The Madison County Transit Board of Trustees has approved a proposal for a vanpool program that will improve access to jobs for Madison County residents.
The initiative allows individuals who live and work in Madison County, or live in Madison County but work in St. Clair County, the ability to form a RideFinders Vanpool and commute to work each day at a discounted rate, the cost of an MCT Bus Pass. Madison County residents commuting to employers within the county can now pay a discounted monthly fee of $50 (the same cost as the MCT Local Pass), and those who live in Madison County and commute to employers in St. Clair County can each vanpool for the flat rate of $70 per month (the cost of an MCT System Pass). That monthly cost not only covers the use of the van, it also includes fuel costs, oil changes, and other preventive maintenance. As an added benefit, each rider also receives four free Guaranteed Ride Home vouchers per year (free taxi ride homes in case of an emergency that causes them to leave early or stay late).
“There are areas of Madison County that are either not served by transit or where bus schedules don’t meet work schedules,” MCT Managing Director SJ Morrison said. “Operating a vanpool allows for us to create a direct, customized and agile transportation option that is affordable for the passengers.”
The initiative will be operated through the St. Louis regional commuter rideshare program, RideFinders (www.RideFinders.org), which MCT has operated since 1994.
- Participants in vanpools originating in Madison County with worksite destinations in Madison County will pay $50 per month per rider.
- Participants in vanpools originating in Madison County with worksite destinations in St. Clair County will pay $70 per month per rider.
- The primary driver will receive a free ride or primary and backup drivers can split the free ride with each driver receiving a 50 percent discounted fare.
- All RideFinders vanpools are open to the public.
- Vanpools must have a minimum of five participants with at least two of these participants serving as approved drivers (a primary driver and a backup driver).
- Employers must provide an onsite contact to help administer and promote the program.
- The Guaranteed Ride Home program provides up to four free taxi rides home per year.
For more information or details about this initiative, email RideFinders Vanpool Outreach Coordinator Tina Johnessee at email@example.com or call (618) 593-4634.