Oro Valley Town Talk: Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride completes two years of service - Tucson Local Media: Opinion

Oro Valley Town Talk: Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride completes two years of service

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Posted: Wednesday, May 21, 2014 4:00 am | Updated: 10:08 am, Wed May 21, 2014.

By the end of fiscal year 2013, which ended June 30, 2013, the success of the Oro Valley Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride transportation service was no longer a secret, nor was it a surprise. This expanded service, which was the result of an intergovernmental agreement between the Town of Oro Valley and the Regional Transportation Authority of Pima County (RTA), has increased by 118 percent, or 17,569 passenger trips from its implementation in FY 2011 through the close of FY 2013. This type of increase in service at this rapid pace takes staff dedication and could not be achieved without the backing of a supportive town council. 

Once the decision had been made to move forward with this innovative integration of transit services, the primary challenge became how to design a transit service to meet a community with diverse needs. The town has a database of more than 4,000 registered users in need of daily, weekly or monthly travel, constituting various trips. The Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride has been developed to serve the entire community regardless of the trip requirement or the trip destination. Trips are developed to accommodate travel within Oro Valley or mobility needs to access medical appointment and/or other events beyond town boundaries and into the Greater Tucson region.

The system is unique. One important distinction is that everyone is eligible to ride. The service is designed to work with the Sun Tran system for the general public, and provides direct service for our seniors and disabled community members. With a 24-hour advance notification, passengers wishing to board the Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride have access to most of the metropolitan Tucson area for a $3 base fare. If you reside within or near Oro Valley, the Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride may be an option for your travel. 

Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride provides access to the community and promotes mobility by being available Monday through Friday, from 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. for the general public and senior riders. In addition, the service is also available on weekends and holidays, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. for passengers who have received American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA) certification. The Oro Valley Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride main information office is open Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m. We welcome inquires about the service at 229-4990.

Projections show the Town of Oro Valley will hit 45,000 passenger trips by the end of the 2014 fiscal year, ending June 30. Oro Valley Town Council and the Regional Transportation Authority are to be applauded for their vision and partnership in providing Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride within the Oro Valley service area. 

(Editor’s Note: Aimee Ramsey is the assistant director of Development and Infrastructure Services for Oro Valley.)

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