Douglas to Carson bus route finalized, ridership increases |

Douglas to Carson bus route finalized, ridership increases

After nearly two months in operation and some minor connection problems, Douglas Area Rural Transit has settled its final fixed route schedule to Carson City.

The revised schedule will begin on Monday. Douglas riders will be able to meet the Carson City Public Rural Ride bus at Westwood Park several times during the day.

The new schedule should clear up confusion that left some passengers in Minden waiting for the Carson bus, said Warren Bottino, acting transportation director for Douglas County.

“This is the final route that we’ve been waiting for. Now we feel we can really lead the charge to get information out to the public,” Bottino said.

While the connection problems were considered minor, passengers who did not make the Carson City transfer did get to their destination. According to Bottino, there was some confusion over changes made by Carson bus officials over the fixed route.

Still, the problems haven’t had a negative effect on ridership, which has been “better than anticipated,” Bottino said.

On average, about 40 people take advantage of each bus service, which kicked off in Douglas County the first week of June.

“We’re getting lots of calls and lots of requests for schedules,” Bottino said.

Even with the new service up and running, the program did undergo another snag when Mike Askew, the county’s previous transportation director, resigned to work for a transportation company in Carson City.

Bottino said Askew’s departure forced transportation employees to work closely and to open up new lines of communication.

“I got to hand it to all the employees. They really have pulled through,” he said.

The PRIDE services out of Carson City will meet DART at Westwood Park at 5:54 a.m., 7:34 a.m., 9:50 a.m., 1:50 a.m., 3:56 a.m., and 6:04 a.m.

The Highway 395 Park and Ride will begin at 5:50 a.m. in Topaz Ranch Estates and will have a return ride concluding in Topaz at 6:41 p.m.

The deviated fixed route will operate in town from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is also a Dial-A-Ride component, but ridership is limited and a minimum of 24 hours advance notice is required.

The Gardnerville and Minden routes have been averaging about 20 riders daily and will continue to operate free of charge through July.

Beginning in August, the fee will be $2 for an all-day pass in Douglas County for adults 12 years of age and over, and $1 suggested donation for seniors and people with disabilities. Children 11 years and under ride free when accompanied by an adult.

Tickets are available on the bus and at the Douglas County Senior Center, 2300 Meadow Lane in Gardnerville.

Call 783-6456 for route information, Dial-A-Ride Service or to have a fixed route schedule mailed.

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