Fare-free bus services for university students in Lawrence, Kansas, have resulted in 138 percent increase in ridership and freed up the roads, as described in the following report.
Many other cities have experienced similar dramatic advantages after introducing free public transport services. New Zealand cities can learn from these experiments to reduce traffic congestion and move towards a sustainable environment. Editor
Every day, bus drivers provide an instrumental service to students and the community as they travel routes to and from campus.
Unlike other public transit systems, KU on Wheels finds itself
carrying more passengers. This is due a great deal to the University
going fare-free for the last three years. Students now pay a flat fee as
a part of their student fees.
This led to KU on Wheels, in association with the City of Lawrence,
winning the 2010 Federal Transit Association Ridership Award. The award
was based on ridership increasing 138 percent in the first year of
implementation, according to the Kansas Public Transit Association.
As a result of the increased ridership, the busing system helps traffic flow and makes campus greener.
By Marshall Schmidt
The University Daily 18 Sept 2011