Baltimore transit officials to launch trial for new fare system
- by admin
Baltimore — Maryland transportation authorities on Monday said they will launch a trial for a new fare-based fare system, the first step in an ambitious overhaul of how the region’s transportation system operates.
The Maryland Transportation Authority (MTA) will launch the pilot program in early 2018 and provide feedback to Metro and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) on the system’s feasibility, officials said.
The MTA will evaluate the pilot’s pilot program, which will be implemented in 2018, on a rolling basis.
“The MTA is committed to developing and testing a pilot system that will deliver on its promise to the region and provide a better quality of life for Baltimore residents,” said MTA spokesman David Smith.
The pilot program will be tested in the District, which was the first jurisdiction to adopt a fare system in the mid-2020s.
The MTA said the pilot will cover the entire system, including bus stops, station platforms, buses, trains, ferries and buses that connect to the subway.
“A pilot program that we’re excited about is an important first step to make Baltimore a more equitable and reliable transportation system,” said Mayor Catherine Pugh in a statement.
Pugh is leading the effort to overhaul the MTA.
MTA officials have already begun evaluating the new fare structure, which is currently funded through a bond measure passed by the General Assembly in 2018.
The state has provided $1.3 billion in additional funding for the MTA since the end of the fiscal year in 2021.
Transportation Secretary Peter Kraska said the MTA will take a wait-and-see approach with the new system, but he expects it to take about three years to fully implement.
“The pilot is still being evaluated, and we’ll know more about it next year,” Kraska told reporters.
Maryland has a population of about 1.4 million and the MTA has a long history of testing and testing the transit system.
Critics say the MTA’s current fare structure has long been inequitable, and that the system has been slow to implement the change.
More than 20,000 people have signed a petition demanding a fare overhaul, and the mayor has called for an overhaul of the system.
Baltimore — Maryland transportation authorities on Monday said they will launch a trial for a new fare-based fare system, the…