Alder Charles Myadze
Home Address:1509 Drewry Ln
- Phone: (608) 571-7342
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210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: (608) 266-4071
Fax: (608) 267-8669
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Alder Myadze’s Updates
Information on Madison Metro Paratransit Service
I wanted to know more about paratransit so I reached out to Metro per my constituents request and this is what I found out.
Metro understands that due to routes being removed from certain streets due to its future redesign may cause some riders to not be able to ride fixed-route buses any longer. They also fully realize that just learning this entire new system will take some time and effort for everyone, and this might be even more true for seniors and those with disabilities.
What they wanted me to pass on is that they are doing what they can to make this as easy of a process as possible for everyone, with a special emphasis on those that might need extra assistance.
Staff are already out inspecting sidewalks, crosswalks and other boarding areas for potential new service areas. Repairs will be made and new sidewalks installed in certain areas to make sure it is safe and convenient for everyone to get on the bus. If you have concerns about a particular area, you can contact them right now by calling (608) 266-4466 or emailing MetroRedesign@cityofmadison.com.
They also plan on having plenty of staff available to help you figure out the new system. Metro ambassadors will be available at community events this summer to help plan trips and answer questions about the new service. Metro staff are also glad to come out to groups and businesses to provide training and answer questions throughout the weeks and months ahead of the redesign.
Extra customer service reps will also be hired in the coming year, so that it's always easy to reach someone on the phone. Metro ambassadors will also be available out on the street when the new service starts to answer questions and make sure people get on the right bus.
Metro staff have also told me that the way the new system is designed, some people might find that some trips may no longer be accessible due to longer walks to bus stops.
If you're one of those individuals, paratransit service might be a great option. There are some steps to becoming a registered rider, and some differences when riding, but overall it is a great alternate transportation resource.
Riding paratransit means that you can book a ride directly from your doorstep, and it will drop you off directly at your destination location.
To sign up for paratransit, you need to fill out an application and then set up an in-person assessment with Metro staff. In-person assessments are handled at Metro, but when you call to set it up, a ride will be scheduled to pick you up for your assessment and then take you back home.
To be certified as an official paratransit rider, you need to have a disability, and it must affect you in a way that prevents you from no longer being able to ride the bus. For example, barriers to riding can be stairs, too long of a walk to stops, or cognitive or sensory issues that make it difficult for you to understand how to use the system.
For some, certain destinations might be accessible while others are not. So, using paratransit is not an all or nothing service. It's there as a resource if needed, and Metro encourages you to use both systems if you're able.
To be eligible for paratransit, you also need to live within ¾ of an existing Metro route. However, Metro's new redesign will NOT cause the paratransit service area to shrink.
Weekday paratransit boundaries will either remain the same, or be expanded depending on the final system design. If you receive weekday paratransit service, you will continue to receive weekday paratransit service after the redesign.
The cost to ride paratransit is $3.25 for a one-way trip. Yes, this is more expensive than Metro's regular fare, but you are getting a ride directly from your home that takes you directly to your destination. This is much cheaper than trying to take this ride with another similar service.
If you're reading this and thinking paratransit might be a resource for you, I encourage you to check it out. If anything, you can apply for temporary eligibility so that you have a back-up option as you learn the new system next June.
If you need help with your application, you can contact the Aging and Disability Resource Center of Dane County (ADRC). They have an office here in our neighborhood at the Northside Town Center, 2865 N. Sherman Ave. and be reached by calling (608) 240-7400 or emailing ADRC@countyofdane.com.
Dane County Group Access rides are another resource for getting around to important destinations such as grocery stores, food pantries, job interviews. These rides are meant to help seniors and people with disabilities remain independent and continue to live in their own homes.
To apply for this service, call (608) 242-6489 or email TransportationCallCenter@countyofdane.com.
There are big changes coming this year, but I was pleased to hear that Metro and other area organizations have options available to help make these changes much more manageable. If you have any questions about any of this, please contact Metro staff at (608) 266-4466 or email email@example.com.
More complete information on these services can be found on Metro's website. You can also print a flyer at this link.
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