- Bryan Ripple 88th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base personnel interested in a way to avoid driving to and from work in heavy traffic or bad weather or those who are frustrated with the difficulty of finding a parking space on base may soon be able to take advantage of an improved transportation program provided by the Greater Dayton Regional Transit Authority, or RTA.
The RTA Connect On-Demand program will begin service to and from the base Feb. 18, said Jessica Olson, communications manager with the Greater Dayton RTA.
The RTA Connect On-Demand program offers riders transportation service directly to the building they work at and is not limited to just one drop-off and pick -up time per day. So riders will no longer have to be concerned about missing the bus when traveling to and from work.
Currently, riders can connect with the RTA routes X1A and X1B at the Wright Stop Plaza Transit Center in downtown Dayton. Those routes run along designated bus stops along the route lines, which end on the base in Areas A and B. These stops are limited to the route line and only run service once in the morning and once in the afternoon after work. If a rider misses the bus, he or she has to find another way home.
When RTA Connect On-Demand service begins on base Feb. 18, riders will still use the regular RTA buses to get to one of the RTA Connect transfer point locations, either at Wright State University on the Route 1 or at Old Harshman Road at Springfield Street on the Route 11. From there, a taxi provider or one of RTA’s other providers (an RTA driver with a smaller vehicle) will pick riders up at that location and then take them on base to the building they want to go to. Riders must call the RTA at 937-425-8300 and select the RTA Connect On-Demand option to book directly with one of the approved providers.
Riders must work with security forces to ensure clearance onto the base for the driver. Some taxi providers have already been cleared for access onto the base, said Olson.
“Riders have the responsibility to work with security forces for clearance, but they can schedule it out with RTA. So if they work five days a week from this time to this time, they can schedule a month’s worth of trips around when they want to be picked up and dropped off,” said Olson.
Riders will be able to book transportation any time they want with no additional cost to the rider. When a bus pass is purchased, the pass is used to get to the connection point at Wright State University or on RTA Route 11 at Springfield Street and Old Harshman, she said.
Riders will be able to schedule their transportation onto and away from the base as they desire.
“It will just be in a smaller vehicle, a smaller RTA bus or with one of RTA’s service providers,” Olson said.
“Because we’re not running a big bus, riders can actually book this trip to go to any location the rider wants within the base directly at the desired drop-off location. The big busses were a lot more limited where they could get to on base. This additional trip doesn’t cost the rider anything extra,” Olson said.
“Existing on-base signage will be taken down at the former bus stops since there won’t be need for them any longer,” said Olson.
“RTA Connect On-Demand will be sort of a concierge service – a much nicer service to just book a trip, walk out the front door from any building on base, and transportation will be waiting for the rider to take them to the transfer point they need to get to,” she said.
For more information about the RTA Connect On-Demand opportunity, call Customer Service at 937-425-8300 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit RTA’s website at http://www.i-riderta.org/rta-connect/on-demand.