Grand Rapids promises equitable mobility with 35 more bus stops

Courtesy The Rapid

The city of Grand Rapids is adding 35 bus stop shelters on The Rapid line with expected completion in October 2022.

The $250,000 transaction approved by the city commission involves the transfer of funds from the city’s Mobile GR department to the Interurban Transit Partnership, which operates The Rapid.

The long-standing partnership between Mobile GR and The Rapid was established in part to provide safe, reliable and affordable transit services to the area. The Rapid owns its own fleet of buses serving greater Grand Rapids, while the city-owned Downtown Area Shuttle (DASH) also is contracted with The Rapid, which provides maintenance and shelter for the city’s shuttle service.

Assistant Mobile GR Director Justin Kimura said The Rapid will purchase the bus shelters through its existing contract with Tolar Manufacturing.

“Our goal is to provide clean, modern and accessible transit stop infrastructure to the riders of The Rapid and the Dash,” Kimura said. “This consistent infrastructure allows for greater transit user familiarity and standardizes parts, inventories and maintenance services. It also will encourage greater ridership of public transit across the city but specifically in our historically underserved communities.”

The new stops will be installed within Grand Rapids city limits and will address part of the city’s strategic plan focused on equitable and inclusive mobility services. Nineteen shelters will be installed in the city’s neighborhoods of focus, also aligning with the city’s strategic plan. Thirteen shelters will be installed in Ward 1, seven in Ward 2 and 15 in Ward 3.

The neighborhoods of focus installations specifically address Mobility Objective 1 and Mobility Objective 4 of the city’s strategic plan. Objective 1 looks to create an accessible, multimodal transportation system and decrease single-occupant vehicle travel, while Objective 4 addresses development, operations and maintenance of city transportation and infrastructure through investments with regional partners.

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