New Transit Network Would Increase Frequency, Maintain Coverage

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The draft of a restructured Memphis bus system with shorter wait times for riders was presented to the Memphis City Council Tuesday.


The plan to revamp the Memphis Area Transit Authority’s (MATA) system is a part of the larger 20-year Memphis 3.0 Comprehensive Plan. Scudder Wagg, a consultant with Jarrett Walker + Associates, the Portland-based group working with the city to develop the new network, said an additional $30 million would be needed to put the network in place.


The proposed network features more weekend service, as well as more frequency on 70 percent of the current routes, increasing the number of people living close to frequent routes by 70,000.


Currently, MATA’s priority is to provide widespread coverage rather than frequent services.


Maintaining most of MATA’s existing coverage, the new network would increase the number of people with access to service by 5 percent and would bring transit service to about 100,000 jobs in the city.


The $30 million would be used in part to purchase additional buses, as well as to make improvements to stations and other infrastructure.


A full report by JWA will be released later this week on the Memphis 3.0 site. Public feedback will be accepted on the drafted network over the next few months. Implementation of the network would take between three and four years, Wagg said.


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