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Local Bus Riders Older, Don't Have A Car, Link To Jobs And School

Northwoods Transit Connections

The folks who responded to a recent survey by Northwoods Transit Connections are generally pleased with the bus service, some saying it is their only ride to jobs and school.

Oneida and Vilas counties founded the service.

Transit Manager Roger Youngren says the bus provides a link for many...

"One of the things that wasn't surprising, that supports the need for public transportation services in our area, given the age of our communities, the age of the citizens that we serve. One of the things that jumped out at me was that 76 percent of the respondents replied that they don't have access to a car. Either they don't have one or don't have access to a car..."

Youngren says most of the people being served are 60 years or older or have a disability, and rode often...

"...Most of the riders ride with us two or three times a week, if not daily, many of them daily. Most of them 2-3 times a week..."

He says about 35 percent of the riders use the bus to go to work. Many others use it for medical appointments, shopping, and getting to meals.

Youngren says the only part of the survey that came out negative was that the service is not offered nights or weekends...

"...I'd like to consider offering service nights and weekends, but it's not in the cards just yet. We were under budget last year and made a little bit of a profit. We're under budget the first six months of this year. I don't see it in the cards in 2020 or 2021. After that, maybe it's something we can consider..."

Oneida and Vilas counties formed the service in 2015. About 40,000 rides in the past year have been provided by the service.

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