Lexington microtransit funding bid stalls in committee

Originally published by WEKU.

A Lexington City Council committee heard a presentation Tuesday on microtransit – public transportation using vehicles like cars and vans going door to door or hub to hub, rather than the large buses employed by LexTran. About 20 members of The Build, a group pushing for the city to add microtransit for people who don’t live near bus stops and can’t afford a cab or services like Uber, were in attendance. Councilmember Chuck Ellinger put a price tag on a pilot study.

“With money that we have set aside in the capital projects, we have over $35 million in that, we could use $400,000 of that, we could do an 80-20 match and actually get raised $2 million and be able to do this.”

Ellinger said federal grants would make up the 80 percent and cited other cities that claimed success with microtransit. Emily Elliott of LexTran said funding was a worry.

“It’s something that we’ve been thinking about, and we’ve been considering, and we’re trying to stay on the pulse of trends throughout the nation. But there are some limitations, how do you fund it? And how do you fund it in a sustainable way?”

Several council members expressed concerns, though, and Ellinger’s request didn’t receive a vote. Environmental Quality and Public Works Chair Liz Sheehan said microtransit will be studied further.

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Originally published by WEKU.

Republished with permission.