The city of Statesboro’s feasibility study for a public transit system is progressing, with a second online survey underway and an informational open house planned for 5-7 p.m. Thursday, March 7, in the Honey Bowen Building, 1 Max Lockwood Drive at Fair Road Park.
Available through a link at the top of the “Notices” column on the city’s homepage, www.statesboroga.gov, the new survey lets participants choose which routes they would likely use among multiple color-coded routes in a Concept A and Concept B for an overall bus system.
“The initial transit survey that was conducted indicates that an interest exists for transit service in Statesboro, so we are continuing to be proactive in our study of transit needs by conducting a second open house and survey for additional public input regarding possible routes and fares,” interim Assistant City Manager Jason Boyles said in a press release.
Thursday’s open house is a drop-in event, so people can arrive at any time during the two hours. City staff members and Connetics Transportation Group, or CTG, study consultants will be there to answer questions and present possible route concepts and other visual aids, Boyles announced.
Willing to pay?
Meanwhile, the city is encouraging the public to complete the new survey, more detailed than the first.
Besides the route choices, the 21-question survey asks respondents how often they would use the service and at what times of day. It asks what one-way fare, if any, you would be willing to pay for regular or “flex route” service and whether you would accept a tax increase to support the service.
After the multiple-choice questions about route preferences, the survey includes an open-ended question where people can suggest changes to the routes. Another open question invites additional comments.
The survey is scheduled to remain open through March 24.
City Council in September authorized paying CTG $68,793 for the study work. CTG, headquartered in Atlanta but with several offices across the United States, was the only bidder, but originally asked for $89,158 before city officials negotiated the removal of a few offered services to get the price down.
The city Statesboro has $450,000 earmarked for public transit from the five-year, countywide Transportation Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax approved by voters in May 2018. The earmark is a relatively small part of the city’s $20.64 million to $25.8 million share of the T-SPLOST, which also funds street, sidewalk, trail and bike lane projects and purchases of road maintenance equipment.