Metro seeks input as it takes steps to improve services

ST. LOUIS - We’re getting a closer look at how Metro is stepping into the next generation.  Workers were at several stops on Wednesday handing out pamphlets to explain the changes, but Metro is still looking for input from the public.

“We’re taking a fresh look at where people need to travel and then options for providing nobility and technology have changed quite a bit and so we’re going to be introducing some of those new service changes here in St. Louis, “says Jessica Mefford-Miller Metro Assistant Executive Director for Planning and System Development.

She says that includes cutting back wait times to less than 15 minutes along bus and train corridors that have transfer points, adding electric buses, mobile tickets, rider alerts, and updating hubs with more shelters and benches among other changes.

Riders share their thoughts on what to upgrade.

“I like the better lighting idea because when I come home at night sometimes it’s pretty dark at different stops and the benches also would be helpful,” says Patia Topping.

Angela Khan says, “I think there’s a huge discrepancy between the technology, where the bus stops are located in the space between branches because there’s a lot of older people.”

Metro says it will hold 12 public meetings throughout April and it’s looking for input from riders as they modernize metro.

“We’ll finalize the plan as well as the implementation strategy this summer and begin to see some of the investments of Metro Reimagined implemented between 2018 and 2021,” says Mefford-Miller.

She says the improvements won’t require raising taxes, instead, most of it will come from Metro’s existing operating budget and grants.

“I have a lot of suggestions I’m going to show up at the meeting and I hope a lot of other people do to create solutions for a lot of the problems that were identifying to improve the system,” says Khan.

The system hasn’t seen an overhaul this big since 2006. Once they finish the renovations here in St. Louis they’ll start work on the Illinois side.

For more information and a list of public hearings check out the Metro site.