Ride the bus, take a survey: Help officials assess the state of public transit
MILWAUKEE — The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) is updating a cost-benefit study designed to identify the financial impacts of public transit in Wisconsin. But officials say they need the input of bus riders to make it a success.
The survey is being shared with all 81 of Wisconsin’s public transit systems from October 5th through the 16th. Transit users are encouraged to take part in the survey through their local transit provider.
The last study of a similar nature was done in 2006. The update is intended to reflect current economic and transit conditions in the state. Primary elements of the study include econometric analysis of transit operating data and a passenger survey. WisDOT will use the survey to assess the reasons people use transit and understand what transportation options they have when transit is unavailable.
Governor Scott Walker has proclaimed October 5th to 11th Wisconsin Transit Week.
The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT), the Transportation Development Association of Wisconsin (TDA) and others are teaming up to promote and celebrate the transit systems that contribute to the state’s economy and quality of life.
“Transit plays an important role in our department’s mission of providing leadership in the development of a safe and efficient transportation system,” noted WisDOT Secretary Mark Gottlieb. “It provides mobility to those who can’t drive, or choose not to drive. It’s critical for economic development as nearly half of all transit rides are for Wisconsinites getting to jobs. Currently, 54% of all residents have access to transit, which is in line with national averages.”
In addition to enabling people to get where they need to go, transit saves riders money and helps protect the environment. According to AAA, the total cost to drive a car is about 58 cents per mile. Households that use public transportation and live with one less car can save almost $9,000 every year.
“People of all ages and all demographics rely on our transit systems,” added TDA of Wisconsin Executive Director Craig Thompson. “We see many younger people use transit when they don’t have – or want to own – a car. We see older individuals able to maintain an active lifestyle, due to the accessibility of public transit in their community. And, we see many workers who use transit to get to and from work each day. In many cases, the proximity of transit to an employer’s workplace is a draw for qualified workers and way to retain this workforce. We cannot underestimate the implications public transit has on our economy.”
CLICK HERE for more information on Wisconsin Transit Week.