Colorado Springs is rolling out smaller buses later this month as a part of a pilot project to determine whether the city can continue to provide public transportation but at a lower cost.
The city said it will replace standard 36- or 39-seat buses with smaller 20-seat buses on four routes.
The four test routes are:
Route #15 – Pikes Peak Community College and E. Las Vegas Street
Route #16 - Brookside Street and Uintah Gardens
Route #22 – Security and Widefield
Route #24 – Galley Road and Peterson Air Force Base
“This test will determine if we can use smaller buses on our medium-volume routes,” Craig Blewitt, Transit Services Division manager, said in a press release.
“Although most of the operational expenses come from contracted driver costs, there can be a savings on fuel costs,” he said.
It’s unclear where the city is getting the smaller buses.
Vicki McCann, a spokeswoman for the city’s transit division, did not immediately return a call for comment.
The pilot project is expected to conclude in mid-February, the city said. Riders are encouraged to comment on their experience with the smaller buses by calling 385-RIDE or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The project was announced today by the Transit Services Division and Mayor Steve Bach’s Transit Solutions Team.
“The team is charged with rethinking our transit system to achieve optimum customer service efficiently,” the city said. “The team members will look at ideas such as creating a transit zone within the City and the feasibility of using smaller buses, van pools, cab vouchers and other options.”
The Transit Solutions Team goal is to achieve both “optimal customer service and outstanding efficiency within the transit system,” team leader Robert Shonkwiler is quoted as saying.
“Transit may be able to provide the same high level of service using smaller, more cost effective vehicles,” he said.