Huntsville Public Transit may expand in the future

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Currently the Huntsville Public Transit system serves close to 4,000 people a day. “We did an upgrade in our routes and our times a couple of years ago. We’ve really seen an increase in our ridership,” Huntsville Parking and Transportation Director Tommy Brown said.

The Rocket City continues to grow and so does the demand for public transportation. “There’s three things that the folks that ride our transit system and the social service agencies and folks like that have requested we do,” Brown said.

Brown said customers want the transit system to run on Saturdays. He said they also get requests to extend the time frame of bus services and the area of coverage.

“We operate our service, our normal service Monday through Friday, roughly 5:30 to 6:30. Right now we cover a lot of the areas of the city, there`s some places we don`t get to. We don`t get to the airport, places in east Huntsville that we don`t provide service,” Brown explained.

He said they want to fulfill the requests, but they need the money. “Right now we are utilizing all of the funding that we are allocated from the federal government and that’s matched by the city,” Brown said.

He’s hopeful in the near future they will be able to provide more. “If we add service then we would get additional federal funding after it’s been in place for a year, so essentially the city would have to fund 100 percent of the service for the short term,” Brown said.

Huntsville’s population is growing and Brown said a lot of people moving here may be use to using public transportation, but the need isn’t quite at the level as larger cities.