Earlier this fall the Topeka Metropolitan Transit Authority held a public discussion at Quincy Street Station, 820 S.E. Quincy St., to discuss new route options including the possibility of adding additional weekend and evening service. In addition to the new route options, it was announced that TMTA would be looking at removing the 90-minute transfers, and implementing an annual pass not just for Topeka Metro fixed route buses, but also in combination with Topeka Metro Bikes bike share program.
On Monday, Dec. 19, TMTA released a news statement explaining that in March 2017, Topeka Metro would be raising their fixed route bus fares from $2 for adults to $4. In addition to the statement, students ages 5 to 18 would see an increase of $1.50 to $3. Disabled riders would also see an increase by $1 to $2. Furthermore, the statement did include with the 90-minute transfer being phased out as it has been in place since the late 1980s, that it will begin a 24-hour pass. How this will work, for example, if you pick-up a bus and ask for a pass at 3:45 p.m. on Wednesday. This pass will be good through Friday morning at the start of service at 5:45 a.m.
This can be seen as an excellent opportunity for Topeka Metro as ridership has been seen for their passengers multiple times per day such as myself. TMTA did mention the 24-hour pass is not free but did not include how much this would be at the date of the statement release. In addition to the statement, the annual pass discussed earlier this fall would be rolled out. Currently, the board of directors has not finalized the details of what specifics this will detail. This is the first time TMTA is implementing an annual pass, in my journeys to Portland I first discovered Tri-Met, Tri-County Metropolitan Transit Authority, servicing Multnomah, Washington, and Clackamas counties in Oregon had an annual pass that ran $1,100 for adults and $308 for students, disabled and LIFT riders.
What are your specific thoughts on the new 24-hour pass, and annual pass becoming available to Topeka Metro? Weigh in with your opinion in the comments below!