DART Seeks Community Input on Public Transit

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DES MOINES, Iowa – The Metro is growing and transportation needs are evolving. That’s why Des Moines Area Regional Transit Authority, better known as DART, is asking for feedback on public transit.

DART started gathering feedback at the beginning of April. While it’s not had an adopted long-range plan since 2011, Chief External Affairs Officer Erin Hockman said DART has continued to seek input on its services to make improvements now and plan for the future.

“We’ve continued to make adjustments to the service that we provide today, but this effort is really to develop a new long term plan that will help us determine what should DART services well into the future look like as we grow as a region, attract more people, and with the technology advancements and all the new mobility options that are available,” Hockman said.

Input received in the past has led to adding more bus shelters, earlier weekday services, and revised bus routes.

DART knows with the large area it serves, a fixed route doesn’t make sense for every travel need. That’s why it is exploring different ideas like micro-transit which offers flexible routing and schedules. DART is also looking at first mile-last mile solutions.

“How do we help someone get from their doorstep all the way to the doorstep of their destination?” Hockman said. “Public transit may meet a large majority of that trip, but there may be a first mile or two on the front end and on the back end that they need to complete prior to getting to the bus stop and then from the bus stop to their final destination.”

People have until Friday, May 7 to fill out the survey, which can be found at ridedart.com/plan.

DART plans to review the feedback to draft recommendations, which will be shared for additional public feedback later this year.

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