Wednesday, September 25, 2013

New bus turnout at East Fork completed

Mountain Rides now has improved mid-valley bus stop


A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on Sept. 19 for a new Mountain Rides Transportation Authority bus turnout and shelter just north of the East Fork Road intersection with state Highway 75. From left are Mountain Rides Operations Manager Jim Finch, David Lloyd of Lloyd Construction, Idaho Transportation Department District Engineer Devin Rigby, Community Transportation Association of Idaho District 4 Mobility Manager Sarah Michael, Mountain Rides Business Manager Wendy Crosby, Mountain Rides employee Bill Green, Mountain Rides Executive Director Jason Miller and Mountain Rides board member Steve Wolper. Courtesy photo

    Mountain Rides Transportation Authority announced last week that a new bus turnout, complete with a rider shelter, has been finished on the northeast corner of the intersection of state Highway 75 and East Fork Road.
    Completion was announced on Sept. 19 following a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the location. Mountain Rides has had a bus stop at the location for its Valley Route for several years, but the new turnout and shelter provides improved passenger safety and comfort.
    The turnout was built by Lloyd Construction, of Ketchum, under a $44,000 contract awarded to the company in June. The shelter was assembled from a kit by Mountain Rides employees.
    The bulk of the funding, $38,000, was from a Federal Transportation Authority grant. The remainder was local matching funds.
    “These funds allowed MRTA to significantly improve the only mid-valley stop in our system and adds to our infrastructure, which, research proves, leads to increased ridership,” Mountain Rides Business Manager Wendy Crosby stated in a news release.
    “This shelter and the improved pullout are an important step in helping link the bus system with other modes of transportation,” said Steve Wolper, a member of the Mountain Rides board of directors. “We are hoping that it will encourage more people to use the bus for events in Sun Valley or Ketchum by parking at East Fork and taking the bus into town.”
    Mountain Rides now has 24 bus shelters in its transportation system from Hailey north to the Ketchum and Sun Valley area.
    “Our ridership continues to grow, so adding amenities such as shelters is essential to our continued success,” said Mountain Rides Executive Director Jason Miller.
    Mountain Rides is seeking additional federal funding for the East Fork area to build a pathway from the parking area to the bus stop and improve the bus stop for southbound traffic on the west side of the highway.
Terry Smith: tsmith@mtexpress.com




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