The Stanislaus Regional Transit Authority (StanRTA) announced last week that all trips in August and September 2021 will be free for passengers as part of a welcome campaign for local public transport. This includes all fixed routes; MAX to BART Commuter Express; MAX to ACE Commuter Express; BART commuter bus services from StaRT; and ADA paratransit, medivan and dial-a-ride services.
“With the merger of Modesto Area Express (MAX) and Stanislaus Regional Transit (StaRT) to form the new StanRTA, we are delighted to be inviting passengers back to public transport with free rides after many COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted,” said Adam Barth, StanRTA Director of Operations and Planning. “We want the community to know that transit is safe and there for them, whether they are new or experienced transit users.”
The goal of freeride funding is to reduce the use of single-person vehicles in order to reduce traffic jams, environmental pollution and countless hours on highways. The number of passengers in local public transport has decreased since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. StanRTA hopes to use the free rides to reassure the community that public transportation is safe.
“MAX and StaRT buses are disinfected every night with disinfectant in hospital quality and masks are required by the federal traffic authorities until September 13, regardless of the vaccination status,” said Barth.
Residents are encouraged to make the most of this free ride promotion by planning their rides in advance. Travel planning tools are available on transport company websites as well as via smartphone apps such as Google Maps and an app called Transit. These tools make it easy to determine the nearest bus stop, the correct route, and access real-time bus arrival information.
All public transport buses in the county are accessible to people with disabilities, as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
More information about StanRTA can be found at www.stanrta.org. You can also find routes and timetables for the transit services at www.modestoareaexpress.com and www.srt.org. The public is also welcome to attend the StanRTA board meetings, which take place every fourth Thursday of the month at 1 p.m.
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