What's the State of Metro? Going Forward
At its 2014 State of Metro annual meeting today, Metro introduced its new CEO, announced a regional pass with TANK, released results from a study that shows how Metro stacks up against transit systems in peer cities, and highlighted its 2014 successes.
Metro introduces new CEO, launches regional pass, and is still #1 in operational efficiency among peers
CINCINNATI – At its 2014 State of Metro annual meeting today, Metro introduced its new CEO, announced a regional pass with TANK, released results from a study that shows how Metro stacks up against transit systems in peer cities, and highlighted its 2014 successes.
- NEW CEO: Metro introduced Dwight Ferrell as Metro’s Chief Executive Officer & General Manager, effective Jan. 5, 2015. Ferrell has 30+ years of transit experience, including in some of the largest, multi-modal, public transportation systems in the nation, such as Atlanta, Austin, Dallas and New Orleans.
- NEW REGIONAL PASS: Metro’s Interim CEO Darryl Haley and Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky General Manager Andy Aiello announced new regional stored-value cards that can be used on Metro and TANK buses beginning Dec. 15. The cards will be available in $10, $20, and $30 values at the Metro-TANK sales office, online and at ticket vending machines at Government Square and Uptown Transit District.
- BALANCED BUDGET IN 2015: Metro’s $93.6 million 2015 operating budget is balanced… with no fare increases or service reductions.
- NATIONAL PERSPECTIVE: For the second year in a row, the UC Economics Center study has shown that Metro is still #1 in operational efficiency among 12 peer transit systems, but is still close to the bottom in terms of local and state funding. A University of Minnesota study examined the accessibility to jobs by transit in 46 largest U.S. metropolitan areas. Cincinnati ranked in the middle for employment and workforce, but last in transit service connecting people to jobs.
“All of these reports confirm what we already believed to be true: that our transit system is efficient but needs to do more to meet the needs of our community,” said SORTA Board Chair Jason Dunn.
Metro recapped its 2014 accomplishments:
- Completed $7 million investment in the Uptown Transit District with enhanced boarding zones, real-time information, ticket vending machines, wayfinding, and more amenities.
- Introduced same-sex and domestic partner benefits to assure that all employees and their families have access to equal benefits.
- Increased outreach to disadvantaged business enterprise and minority-owned and women-owned businesses through training and an Economic Inclusion Vendor Fair. Metro is hiring a new Economic Inclusion Manager to support these efforts.
- Added a new John W. Blanton Internship Program to introduce talented young adults to the transit profession.
- Received the highest awards for both safety and security from the American Public Transportation Association, an unprecedented accomplishment nationally.
- Improved the customer experience with new 24-hour ticket vending machines at Government Square and the Uptown Transit District.
- Launched new, convenient day passes, good for unlimited rides.
- Expanded service in Sharonville and Evendale, and added a new park & ride in Colerain Township.
Metro also presented the following awards:
- go*Forward Transit Partner Awards:
- Royal Coachperson Award: Former SORTA board members Suzanne Burke, Todd Cooper and Brandi Stewart
- Chairman’s Award: SORTA Board Liaison Donna Adkins, Metro bus drivers Clay Chin and Jontay Love
- New transit partners: Deloitte, Federal Home Loan Bank, the Healing Center at Vineyards Church, Miami-Jacobs Career College and Antonelli College
- Leadership Award: Metro Interim CEO Darryl Haley
- Hamilton County Commissioner Todd Portune: Regional Transportation Summit
- City of Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley: public service announcement
- University of Cincinnati: students pass program through 2017
- Cincinnati Public Schools: free rides for students
- The Christ Hospital and Best Upon Request: increased pass sales
- Give Back Cincinnati and Cincy YP: tri*Metro promotion for YPs
Metro is a tax-supported public service of the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority, providing about 17 million rides per year in Greater Cincinnati.
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