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  1. #1

    Default Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public transit

    https://www.435mag.com/kansas-city-b...ublic-transit/

    Today, Kansas City became the first major American city to have fare-free public transit.

    City council voted unanimously to make city bus routes fare-free, reports KSHB, directing the city manager to develop and enact a plan. The city’s light rail was already free.

    Free bus service, which is expected to cost about $8 million, has been pitched as a major help to low-income residents who rely on transit to commute to work.

    New mayor Quinton Lucas helped spearhead the plan with the support of city opinion leaders including the Kansas City Star‘s editorial board.

    Other supporters included City Councilman Eric Bunch.

    “When we’re talking about improving people’s lives who are our most vulnerable citizens, I don’t think there’s any question that we need to find that money,” Bunch told KSHB. “That’s not a ton of money and it’s money that we as a city, if we want to prioritize public transportation, it’s something that we can find.”

    Public transit has become a focus on intense political activity in cities across the country as young climate change protestors demand investment in mass transit to help battle climate change.

    While progressive Kansas City enacts universal fare-free transit, other cities, such as Portland, Oregon, are redoubling efforts to crack down on scofflaws and hiring more transit cops to deter free riders.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public tra

    So awesome! Every city should consider making all public transit free to users.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public tra

    In Lackmeyer's chat today, Mayor Holt said fares in OKC cover about 10% of the total, so it's fairly small, but he said it's still a gap they'd have to figure out how to cover, hope they do find a way, this would be great.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public tra

    Obviously it's not a major city, but again I want to point out how nice the free public transit in Edmond has been. I've taken advantage of it for years.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public tra

    I read an interesting take on this elsewhere. Someone mentioned if it was fare-free more people might ride because there is no barrier to entry. They just get on. No worrying about a fare card, app or cash. I guess I never thought of it that way.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public tra

    Well heck if the fares only pay for 10% of the cost not sure why we don't just make it free. Seems like we might be able to save some by not worrying about a payment system and all the other costs associated with that. Just a thought anyways.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public tra

    Quote Originally Posted by Zuplar View Post
    Well heck if the fares only pay for 10% of the cost not sure why we don't just make it free. Seems like we might be able to save some by not worrying about a payment system and all the other costs associated with that. Just a thought anyways.
    In the case of transit I totally agree, especially in a city our size with a genuine perception problem in regards to public transit. It seems like a good expense for the city to invest in to boost ridership and start making it feel like something people will be willing to spend tax dollars on. Like, we can't just have none, and if we're going to have some, why not invest money in to getting people to actually use it and therefor care about funding it in a sustainable way.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Kansas City becomes first major American city with universal fare-free public tra

    Quote Originally Posted by FighttheGoodFight View Post
    I read an interesting take on this elsewhere. Someone mentioned if it was fare-free more people might ride because there is no barrier to entry. They just get on. No worrying about a fare card, app or cash. I guess I never thought of it that way.
    I appreciate this comment. So often people don't think about a new perspective and it's refreshing to see someone on social media admit to a post making them think.

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