GVT has record month in October

PHOTO BY DANIELLE STOMBERG—Grand Valley Transit Route 9 is one of the more crowded routes.  The route is driven by Arlene Turner and goes to Clifton and back.

More Mesa County residents chose to ride the bus last month than any month in Grand Valley Transit’s history.

The valley’s public-transportation provider experienced a 30 percent increase in ridership compared to October 2007, adding about 74,877 passengers and making an all-time record month, according to Todd Hollenbeck, manager of the Mesa County Regional Transportation Planning Office, which oversees GVT.

It was also an increase of nearly 10,000 riders from the 65,739 GVT recorded in September, Hollenbeck said.

The previous record month for GVT was March 2006. In that month, the transportation provider had 73,765 riders.

With gas prices plummeting from midsummer highs of around $4 a gallon into the $2-per-gallon range, the increasing number of bus riders may be a temporary trend. But Hollenbeck is optimistic, saying high gas prices may have prompted many people to try taking the bus, and now it is up to GVT to provide quality service that will keep those customers returning.

To better understand what services riders want and why they are riding the bus, GVT did a survey of customers last week, and Hollenbeck anticipates learning the results next month.

“It works for them; it gets them where they need to go,” Hollenbeck said of GVT. “I think it is a number of factors that are coming together to contribute to that (record) number.”


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