LB - Felice Soldwedel Unit20 728x90

Home | Classifieds | Place an Ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Obituaries | Contact Us | Subscribe | e-newsletter | RSS |
Williams News | Williams, Arizona

home : latest news : latest news June 28, 2016

9/24/2013 10:29:00 AM
Public transit system between Grand Canyon, Flagstaff and Williams up for discussion

Marissa Freireich
Williams-Grand Canyon News Reporter

Creating better public transportation between Williams, Flagstaff and the Grand Canyon was the topic of a Sept. 17 transit workshop.

About 10 people attended the meeting in the Williams City Council chambers to brainstorm ideas for getting from one place to another.

The meeting comes after the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) awarded a grant to the Northern Arizona Intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority (NAIPTA) and the Economic Collaborative of Northern Arizona (ECoNA) last year. The grant seeks to support economic development through improved public transit services for a Williams-Flagstaff-Grand Canyon transit corridor.

"We realize that transportation is playing an important role in the economy, especially in a small community," said Charles Rutkowski, assistant director of CTAA.

The transit planning project had originally included Winslow, but the Grand Canyon was substituted when planners realized Winslow already has a transportation study in place.

Rutkowski started the workshop by asking participants about the unmet mobility needs in the corridor. Attendees said they would like to see public transportation within Williams, as well as between Williams, Flagstaff and Tusayan, for work, medical care, education, shopping, entertainment and access to the airport.

Participants also suggested residents of Ash Fork, Seligman and Valle may benefit from improved public transportation.

The workshop attendees indicated people need to travel every day, although one participant said service could be scaled down in the winter when fewer tourists visit the area.

"It's interesting that most of you had every day, seven days a week," Rutkowski said. "I think that reflects the unique character of the demand here."

Rutkowski added that most transportation programs have reduced service on weekends.

When asked about the times of day people need the transportation, answers varied from all day long to between the hours of about 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. One participant suggested service was most needed in the morning and evening business hours, from about 6 to 10 a.m. and about 2 to 6 p.m.

Next, Rutkoswski asked participants to discuss any barriers that might hinder public transportation within the corridor. Responses included money to establish the transit service as well as the cost to the user. Attendees also named weather as a potential barrier. Another concern was people who live far away from the transportation route gaining access to it.

"Lower population densities are more difficult to serve because the distances are greater," Rutkowski said. "We've seen sustainable, successful transit programs in smaller communities than this."

The workshop concluded with participants coming up with solutions for their transit needs and prioritizing them. The best solution was to start small by expanding existing transit services within the corridor. The next solution, which participants said should be considered in tandem with the first, was to secure funding through grants, partnerships or a tax district. The third solution was to establish a transit system between Williams, Tusayan and Flagstaff about twice a day. Another idea was to establish a light rail line between the three areas.

Rutkowski said he'd pass on the ideas from the workshop to the project consultants.

"We haven't solved any problems here today, but I think we've at least focused on what some of the needs are and maybe where we need to go," he said. "It's important to know what people want, but what they want does not always equal the kinds of service that they will use."

Rutkowski added that the consultants will consider some quantitative data as well and hope to come up with some specific strategies by November.

    Recently Commented     Most Viewed
Editorial: Commenting to move to Facebook
New maintenance coordinator at Williams Airport
Williams School Board Candidates face off in candidate forum
Hunters shoot prairie dogs at Williams Elementary-Middle School
Composer Ted Nichols, known for his Scooby Doo and Flintstones scores, continues his varied musical career from his home in Williams

Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, October 12, 2013
Article comment by: WHO'S HOUSE?

It's the world's park not Obama's park. We must always remember that. It's the people's White House, not Michele's and Barrack's house.

Posted: Friday, October 11, 2013
Article comment by: Larry Koenig

That would be a waste of money since the Canyons closed. Typical government.

Posted: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Article comment by: Samuel Jennings

Are cars banned at Grand Canyon?

Article Comment Submission Form
Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. The email and phone info you provide will not be visible to the public.Rambling or nonsensical comments may not be posted. Comments are limited to 1300 characters or less. In order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit your comment entries to five(5) per day.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Last Name:
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.

Advanced Search

HSE - We want to hear from you
Find more about Weather in Williams, AZ
Click for weather forecast

Find It Features Blogs Milestones Submit Extras Other Publications
Home | Classifieds | Place an Ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Obituaries | Contact Us | Subscribe | e-newsletter | RSS | Site Map
LB - Felice Soldwedel Unit20 728x90

© Copyright 2016 Western News&Info, Inc.® Williams-Grand Canyon News is the information source for Williams, Arizona and surrounding communities. Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Williams GC Newspapers Inc. Williams News Online is a service of Williams GC Newspapers Inc. By using the Site, ®, you agree to abide and be bound by the site's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy, which prohibit commercial use of any information on the site. Click here to submit your questions, comments or suggestions. Williams News Online is a proud publication of Western News&Info Inc.® All Rights Reserved.

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved