Wednesday, April 25, 2007

KART and Rideshare merger advances

Express Staff Writer

With the merger of Wood River Rideshare with KART and the Peak bus, expected to be accomplished by June, all of the area's transportation services will be under one administration.

The merger will give the public easier access to information, create a more efficient organization and should attract more financial partners, Rideshare Executive Director Jason Miller said.

Miller and KART Director Terry Crawford will become co-directors of the new, as-yet-unnamed organization beginning next week. Miller said a transfer of assets and contracts from Rideshare to KART will follow.

"By June, we're looking at Rideshare as an organization basically going away," Miller said.

KART provides free bus service in Ketchum, the Peak bus provides service between Sun Valley and Bellevue and Rideshare has promoted alternative transportation and operated a van pool program for commuters outside the Wood River Valley.

Miller said his new title will be director of planning and marketing. He said the merger will allow the organization to put more emphasis on attracting new ridership, employer partners and grant money than the current organizations have been able to do individually.

Miller said he expects funding from Blaine County and its cities to continue as before. However, he said that if the goals of the merger are met, less money will be required from them.

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