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Transit Cuts to Create Problems for Passengers

Meiying Wu

The Columbia Disabilities Commission is meeting on March 14th and will host a speaker from the Public Transit Advisory Commission to discuss the changes made to the bus routes. The decreased bus routes are due to tax dollars not keeping up with inflation and rising expenses according to Mike Trapp, ward two city council member. Trapp says Go Como, Columbia’s public transit, was spending more money than it brought in. The Columbia City Council voted in September to decrease bus routes with lower ridership Trapp said.

“I think it’s going to be painful, especially for some individual riders,” Trapp said. “I think it’s something we have to do to reduce to a functional core. We have some routes that have had very low ridership and that doesn’t seem like the best use of scarce funds.”

Adam Kruse is the Americans with Disabilities Act Coordinator for Columbia. He said the changes will hit residents with disabilities and lower incomes harder than most. Cutting down on routes decreases mobility of some residents making it harder to get to work or other places said Kruse.

“It’s going to have a big impact. There are a lot of people with disabilities who rely on public transit and accessible transportation to get around. So, what these people do is they rely on the city’s bus system or they rely on local service agencies who have some traveling arrangement. And so, it would have a significant impact on that community more than the general public.”

The service cuts include fewer evening routes and closing routes on Saturdays all together.