This study was an alternatives analysis of the existing complementary ADA paratransit services offered by the city as well as a similar program for residents that do not have access to transportation. Both programs are currently provided exclusively by taxis, with individual operators assigned to those persons that qualify for the services. Although the existing system was quite popular with the riders, the costs for the program had been increasing significantly in recent years and the city thus was interested in understanding potential alternatives that would maintain mobility options for persons with disabilities, yet consider potentially less costly service delivery options.
The study started with a full review of the current system, by working with staff and interviewing various stakeholders. In addition, there was a peer group comparison that considered similar size agencies, alternative program designs within North Carolina and taxi based service delivery in other locations.
Following this review, alternatives were presented to staff, the affected agencies and the riding public. There was consensus to develop phased modifications including the addition to multi-person and group trips into the mix of paratransit services that could both effectively serve the ridership and include more cost efficient components.