WICHITA FALLS, TX (RNN Texoma) - The Wichita Falls Transportation department are pushing forward on providing an after hours bus system following a town hall meeting Tuesday.
It is something that disabled veteran Christopher Carter has wanted to city to do for years now.
Carter depends on the city's bus system which he says do not run late enough. He said it has even caused him to lose out on jobs and miss out on enjoying night time activities like going to the movies and sporting events
In the town hall, Carter asked city officials, “You talk about the quality of life, we’ve got a brand-new hockey team coming. Great for the economy, but how and I supposed to get there?”
Director of Transportation John Burrus said it is a problem they are working to solve right now.
“There are people that we've gotten to work that have not been able to use the bus to get home,” he said.
In order to solve the issue, the city is in the process of partnering with local businesses to help subsidize the costs of an after hours bus route which will run from 7 pm to midnight.
It would be a similar system to what they have in place with Midwestern State University. Right now, MSU supplies the local match dollars to the Transportation Department and in return the they provide them with transportation.
One key element to the system is that it would be a pre-paid subscription.
The goal is to make it available for individuals or a group of employees that would each individually register and get a bus pass from the Transportation Department.
The department ideally wants to partner with local businesses to offset costs so that those businesses’ employees could ride the buses for free.The Transportation Department would pick the employees up from work and drive each of them directly home.
As to why this isn't already in place, Burrus says it is because money has gone to other big transportation projects such as the downtown travel center. But now that it is paid off, he said they are able to focus more on tailoring their services to the individual needs of residents like Christopher Carter
“Rest assured I think it's something we're close to getting the solution and resolving,” Burris stated.
John Burrus is encouraging businesses to reach out to the Transportation Department if they feel an after hours bus system would help their employees.
They are hoping to get the system up and running in the next few months and say that as soon as businesses agree to a partnership they will alert the public.