Everyone at NEORide are excited about the future of regional public transit in our region. We’re confident our vision will improve the quality of life in our community, spur economic development, promote the wise and extremely efficient use of taxpayer dollars and enable an ever-growing segment of our population to enjoy the benefits of public transit.
Breaking down borders and driving the development of regional transportation…
Every week, thousands of Ohio and Kentucky residents use NEORide Members to travel to school, work, medical appointments, shopping centers, sporting events, senior centers, parks, museums and the thousands of other destinations that line each system’s routes. To make using public transit easier, member transits have each deployed sophisticated route-mapping software as well as state-of-the-art GPS powered tools that enable riders to plan and control their trips.
But as travel within each system grew more convenient than ever, little effort was made to synchronize or facilitate service between agencies and counties. At times buses passed as they crisscrossed the region or arrived and departed from the same location(s) within minutes of each other. As a result, riders attempting to transfer from one system to another in order to reach their destination faced long delays and uncertainty that made multi-system travel a daunting proposition.
Fortunately, the leaders of the three founding transit agencies (METRO RTA, PARTA and SARTA) recognized that a lack of coordination was more than a challenge; it was also an opportunity to increase the use of public transit in the region. To seize that opportunity, they formed NEORide in 2014. Laketran, which serves the residents of Lake County, Ohio, joined the group in 2017. Medina County Public Transit (MCPT), Western Reserve Transit Authority (WRTA), Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority (TARTA) which provide fixed route, demand response, and paratranist service, became a members in 2018. SORTA (Cincinnati), Cincinnati Bell Connector, Cleveland RTA, Lancaster-Fairfield Public transit and BCRTA (Butler County), TANK (Northern Kentucky) and Sandusky Transit System all joined in 2019.
Established as a Council of Governments (COG) under Ohio law, NEORide is actively working to break down artificial boundaries, streamline operations and make it easier for riders to use public transit to travel across Northeast Ohio and beyond.
NEORide’s journey began with a feasibility study underwritten by a $50,000 grant from the state’s Local Government Innovation Fund. After gathering input from each systems’ general managers and the general public, NEORide analyzed every aspect of the inter-county transit services offered by METRO, PARTA, and SARTA. The team conducted a study of both existing and potential demand for public transit then developed short, intermediate and long-term goals that provide a clear vision for the future of a regional public transit in Northeast Ohio. NEORide's founding members are pleased to bring on new members that will now play essential roles in making that vision a reality that will promote economic development, create jobs, and enhance the quality of life for area residents.