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November 16, 2011

New Wichita Transit website seeks public comments

Wichita Transit has launched a website to collect input from the community about how to improve bus service in the city.

Wichita Transit has launched a website to collect input from the community about how to improve bus service in the city.

Information collected from WichitaTransitTalks.com will be presented to city officials early next spring for further discussion and “possible next steps,” Wichita Transit Director Mike Vinson said today.

“We know people are busy and don’t have time to attend meetings,” Vinson said.

The website provides them a chance to offer input when it’s convenient for them, he said. Transit officials hope to use information gleaned from the website, surveys and meetings to create a new plan for transit services.

Residents can leave comments on the website through Jan. 26.

“A preferred scenario will rise to the top,” Vinson said.

Ridership has fallen 4 percent this year after holding onto most of the 15 percent jump that coincided with gas prices climbing above $4 a gallon in 2008, he said.

City officials are hoping to adjust bus service so that it is not prone to significant drops in ridership, he said.

Historically, he said, ridership has climbed as gas prices have increased.

The new website encourages participation by rewarding points for input. Those points can then be redeemed for prizes such as free bus passes, Vinson said.

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