County residents get another chance to provide input to transit master plan

Ann Arbor, MI – Washtenaw County residents will have another opportunity to have their say on what types of public transit they would like to see in the future. TheRide (Ann Arbor Transportation Authority) will hold 20 community forums to review three possible transportation scenarios (combinations of public transportation solutions) that may be included in the new countywide transit master plan.

The community forums will be held from January 31 to February 23. A complete list of meeting locations and times can be found at the transit master plan website

“The transit master plan will impact everything from economic development and the environment to the quality of life for seniors for the next 30 years,” said TheRide CEO Michael Ford. “The only way to ensure the plan will have the greatest impact is to gather as much feedback as possible.”

The scenarios proposed for the master plan have been developed based on two key reports created to aid in the creation of the transit master plan: The Transit Master Plan Visioning Report, which outlines the shared goals that are common to all Washtenaw County communities and the Transit Audit and Needs Assessment, which identifies the needs that the Transit Master Plan must address for Washtenaw County’s shared goals to be met.

Each of the three transportation scenarios presented at the community forums will include a combination of transit solutions – such as extended service hours or increased express routes –designed to meet Washtenaw County’s current and projected transportation needs.

Possible Transportation Scenarios

Lifeline Plus Scenario

• Improves lifeline services where they exist today

• Provides essential door-to-door connections for seniors and people with disabilities across the County

• Ensures that our most vulnerable populations can remain independent with access to fresh food, employment and educations opportunities, health care and recreational facilities

Accessible County Scenario

• Builds on the Lifeline Plus Scenario to provide a basic level of transit service for all County residents

• Establishes transit as an integral part of the County transportation system, making the County a more attractive place for employers to locate and employees to live

Smarter Growth Scenario

• Adds to the Accessible County Scenario, with investment in high capacity systems and regional rail to guide land use development on high capacity transit corridors

• Stimulates job creation and economic growth

• Focuses development in areas that best accommodate growth

• Preserves green space

• Stems growing traffic congestion

Input received through the community forums will be used to guide development of a preferred scenario that will be used as the basis for the final Washtenaw County Transit Master Plan. The final outcome may be based on one of the scenarios, or a combination of transit options.

“This will be one of the last chances for the public to review what’s being proposed for the transit master plan, ask questions and provide feedback before a final plan is presented early this summer,” said Saline Mayor Gretchen Driskell, who serves on the transit master plan leadership committee. “We encourage Washtenaw County residents to take their future into their hands, get involved and offer their ideas and suggestions at one of the upcoming community forums."

Community forums to be held next week are:

• Manchester Village Offices, Monday, January 31, 6-8 p.m.

• Ann Arbor District Library, Downtown, Tuesday, February 1, 6-8 p.m.

• Domino’s Farms, Wednesday, February 2, 5-7 p.m.

• Ypsilanti Library, Whittaker Road, Thursday, February 3

• Washington Street Education Center, Chelsea, Friday, February 4, 8-10 a.m.

A complete list of community forums is available at