WRTA to consider fare-free bus system

Full and original article posted on Telegram.com

WORCESTER – The Worcester Regional Transit Authority Advisory Board voted unanimously Thursday to conduct a fare analysis that includes consideration of a fare-free system.

“I think it’s in the best interest of the board and the city to at least proactively and quickly do this fare analysis,” said Jacob Sanders, the city of Worcester representative to the advisory board. “I think the community is looking for a solution as soon as possible.”

In a report in May, “The Implications of a Fare-Free WRTA,” The Research Bureau called the WRTA “a perfect candidate” for a fare-free bus system. The report calculated that the $2 million to $3 million annual cost to provide free service could be made up through cost savings, increased governmental aid and partnerships, and it said that offering the service for free would reverse the system’s declining ridership.

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