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SMART Board Meeting - Feb 27 CANCELLED

The scheduled Strategic Planning Committee meeting and SMART Board of Directors meetings that were scheduled for Thursday, February 27th have been CANCELLED.

SMART FAST Ridership Continues to Increase!

SMART FAST Ridership Continues to Increase!

  • Woodard Avenue increased 96%*
  • Michigan Avenue increased 68%*
  • Gratiot Avenue increased 40%*

     *ridership figures compare December 2017 to December 2019 along each corridor

  • System wide ridership over the last two years has increased 20%

                                              

Detroit, Mich., February 5, 2020: FASTFrequent. Affordable. Safe. Transit. operated by SMART is going into its 3rd year of operation and by all measures it is an overwhelming success.  Since the first day of service on, January 1, 2018, ridership has exploded along the three key regional corridors on Gratiot, Woodward and Michigan Avenues. On average, there were 5,000 additional rides every weekday on the FAST corridors compared to pre-FAST.

SMART anticipated great things with FAST, however, SMART never anticipated the exceedingly positive public response and significant ridership levels to elevate so quickly. Each route saw weekday ridership numbers increase. Michigan Avenue, which travels to the airport, increased 68%. Woodard Avenue, which travels to Pontiac, increased 96%, Gratiot Avenue, which travels to 23 mile, increased by 40%.

Despite declines in public transit ridership nationally, SMART has experienced strong ridership increases throughout the system.  Over the last two years, system wide ridership has increased 20%. Incorporating the new FAST service along three of SMART’s busiest routes has helped to prompt this growth. 

 “We are very pleased with the great success of the FAST routes.  Each corridor plays an important role in connecting the suburbs to the city and helping people get to jobs, medical appointments and entertainment venues,” said John C. Hertel, General Manager at SMART, “We wanted to get this service up and running so that residents in the region could get more access to the places they needed to go and easily connect them to Detroit Metropolitan Airport, Pontiac and 23 Mile road.  Our efforts have paid off with more people than ever riding SMART.”  

SMART is always looking at ways to improve service for the region.  As part of that effort, for the past 18 months, SMART initiated a Comprehensive Operational Analysis to learn more about how to best serve riders in SE Michigan and to continue growing ridership and improve efficiency. The analysis took place through a series of in-person, written, and online suggestions from everyday riders.  In February, SMART will present a plan to its Board of Directors for approval.  The SMART Path Plan will serve as a guide for the agency on future improvements to more effectively serve the region.  Innovation is a key aspect of the plan as well as implementing more FAST routes.

Dart App Update

Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART) and The Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT) encourage all customers to download the Dart mobile app to buy Dart passes to ride DDOT, SMART, and the QLINE streetcar.

Users can create an account with their payment information and then, buy passes directly on their phones. Upon purchase, users have immediate access to an electronic pass to show the driver upon boarding.

With the Dart app, users can select a 4-hour or 24-hour pass, or the 7- or 31-day pass at standard or reduced fare rates.

For more information about the Dart app, visit www.thedartapp.com.

SMART, DDOT Become Proterra’s 100th Customer with Purchase of Proterra® Battery-Electric Buses and Charging Systems

SMART, DDOT Become Proterra’s 100th Customer with Purchase of Proterra® Battery-Electric Buses and Charging Systems   

Proterra brings electric vehicle technology to the Motor City and marks more than 800 vehicles sold in North America

 

BURLINGAME, Calif. – October 1, 2019 – Today, Proterra, a leading innovator in heavy-duty electric transportation, announced that the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART) and Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT) have agreed to purchase electric buses and chargers from Proterra, becoming the 100th customer for the company. DTE Energy will work with DDOT, SMART and Proterra on the charging infrastructure. To date Proterra has sold more than 800 buses across 41 U.S. states and Canadian provinces and delivered more than 390 battery-electric buses. Proterra vehicles on the road have also achieved nearly ten million miles of service across North America. 

 

DDOT will receive two 40-foot Proterra Catalyst® E2 Max buses, two Proterra® 125 kW plug-in chargers and one 500 kW overhead fast-charge system. SMART will receive four 40-foot Proterra Catalyst® E2 buses with DuoPower drivetrain technology, four Proterra® 125 kW plug-in chargers and one 500 kW overhead fast-charge system. DDOT and SMART provide high-quality, safe and cost-effective public transit to the southeast Michigan region. DDOT is the largest public transit agency in Michigan providing service to the city of Detroit and neighboring cities and SMART operates primarily in suburban areas. SMART and DDOT were awarded $2.6 million through the Low- or No-Emission Vehicle (Low-No) Program from the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Transit Administration for the electric buses and charging systems. The Proterra electric buses are the first electric buses for both organizations and the Proterra vehicles will replace aging diesel buses.

 

“SMART has long been interested in adding alternative fuel buses to our fleet, and the all-electric bus project is a big step into the future for transit in southeast Michigan.” said John C. Hertel, General Manager, SMART. “Battery-electric buses not only help us meet our sustainability goals, but provide a better rider experience while delivering cost savings.”

 

“Electric buses are a great addition to our fleet and sustainability initiatives that will continue to improve the transit experience for our communities,” said Angelica Jones, Interim Director of DDOT. “It is a great example between the public, private sector and DTE to bring clean and efficient transportation to metro Detroit.”

 

DTE Energy will work with SMART, DDOT and Proterra to provide the utility infrastructure necessary for charging the buses while on-route and at the respective terminals. Proterra and DTE Energy also recently announced a project to provide battery-electric school buses to Michigan schools for pupil transportation and to conduct a vehicle-to-grid pilot program.

 

“We’re excited to once again be working with Proterra to deliver the benefits of electric vehicle technology to Michigan,” said Sean Gouda, manager of DTE’s Electrification Business Development. “DTE Energy is a leader in clean energy initiatives, and we see transportation as a great opportunity to grow our sustainability efforts throughout the state. We commend DDOT and SMART for expanding clean transportation options in our region.”

 

Proterra has consistently advanced electric vehicle technology to tackle the needs of transit agencies across North America. One of the most impressive features of a Proterra battery-electric bus is the drivetrain and propulsion system that enable fuel economies of up to 25 MPGe, compared to conventional combustion engines that typically only get about 3.6 MPG. In addition to excellent fuel economy, Proterra battery-electric buses have eliminated range anxiety by engineering a bus that can hold up to 660 kWh of battery capacity and reach up to 328 miles of operating range.

 

In addition to battery-electric buses, Proterra provides purpose-built high-power charging systems for heavy duty EV fleets. All charging systems utilize standardized technology so customers could charge a range of electric vehicles on the same Proterra charger. In addition to the charging hardware, Proterra offers a full suite of options to enable turn-key delivery of a complete energy ecosystem for heavy-duty electric fleets including design, build, financing, operations, maintenance and energy optimization with Proterra Energy fleet solutions.

 

“Proterra has reached an incredible milestone of bringing clean, quiet transportation to 100 customers across North America,” said Proterra CEO Ryan Popple. “From the vehicle design and battery technology to heavy-duty charging systems and energy solutions, Proterra has been a pioneer in electrifying the transit industry. More than any other form of transportation, battery-electric buses are the cornerstone in addressing the future of mobility and sustainability for cities, and we believe the most exciting EV developments are happening in the North American electric bus industry.” 

 

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About Proterra:

Proterra is a leader in the design and manufacture of zero-emission, heavy-duty electric vehicles, enabling bus fleet operators to significantly reduce operating costs while delivering clean, quiet transportation to local communities across North America. The company’s configurable Catalyst platform is designed to serve the daily mileage needs of a wide range of transit routes on a single charge. With industry-leading durability and energy efficiency based on rigorous U.S. independent testing, Proterra products are proudly designed, engineered and manufactured in America, with offices in Silicon Valley, South Carolina, and Los Angeles. For more information, visit: http://www.proterra.com and follow us on Twitter @Proterra_Inc.

DDOT and SMART Awarded FTA Grant

Dart Passes Now Available for Purchase

May 1st is coming up quick! Prepare for your trip by purchasing your Dart pass ahead of time. You can now purchase Dart passes at SMART transit centers as well as online.

SMART & DDOT announce unified fare payment system: Dart, a new way to pay for public transit

●   Dart payment options include unlimited 4-hour, 24-hour options, weekly and monthly passes to streamline service

●   Dart payment system begins May 1, Dart mobile app payment to launch later this summer

 Transportation and elected officials from Metro Detroit announced today a unified payment system for the region’s bus systems, taking another step towards aligning SMART and DDOT. This new system, Dart, will launch on May 1Dart will be a new way to pay for transit in Metro Detroit and make taking transit more seamless in the region for riders.  

 Dart passes will be available in 4-hour, 24-hour, 7-day and 31-day increments and customers will be able to use them interchangeably on SMART and DDOT buses, eliminating transfers and streamlining the number or fare options between the two systems. Reduced fare options will be available for seniors, people with disabilities, Medicare Cardholders, and youth.  A Dart mobile app will be available this summer.

 The new Dart payment options will improve the experience for transit riders across Detroit and the metro region", said Mayor Mike Duggan. “Dart will bring our two systems closer together with seamless transfers and more flexible payments making riding transit easier for everyone."

 Dart: a more flexible, simple system

The Dart system will simplify the fare options for riders by eliminating transfers and the complexity of fares that exist today. With Dart, riders on either system will only have to pay once and go.  The new Dart passes are designed for quicker, easier boarding and to eliminate confusion on how to pay for transit. 

 “This a giant step in the coordination activities which both SMART and DDOT are working together on for the benefit of the public,” said John C. Hertel, General Manager of SMART, “The county executives, Warren Evans, Mark Hackel, Brooks Patterson, and Mayor Mike Duggan have done a marvelous job in supporting our efforts to make transit better for everyone in the metropolitan area.” 

 “I applaud SMART and DDOT for this collaborative step as transit is critical to connecting people to opportunity,” said Wayne County Executive Warren C. Evans. “Under the current system, transfers can be confusing and intimidating. Relieving that headache encourages ridership which is important to improving mobility and increasing transit options.”

Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson, stated, "Collaboration between SMART and DDOT to improve service for riders is a step toward providing a transit solution that works for the whole region, especially when it entails making the connection between the regional and city bus systems easier for individuals who rely on both to get to their jobs."  

“Both DDOT and SMART have been working together to provide efficient and reliable transportation to the region” said Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel. “This is another example of why I believe these two agencies will continue to provide us with the solutions we need for regional transit.”

 Under the new system, riders will be able to purchase any of the following Dart passes:

●   A 4-hour regional Dart pass with unlimited transfers between DDOT and SMART for $2, with a reduced fare price of 50 cents for qualified riders.

●   A 24-hour regional Dart pass with unlimited transfers between DDOT and SMART for $5, with a reduced price of $2.

●    A 7-day regional Dart pass for $22, with a reduced price of $10.

●    A 31-day regional Dart pass, good for unlimited rides on both systems, for $70, with a reduced price of $29.  The 31-day pass will also feature a tap to pay option for easier boarding.

Riders have the ability to take unlimited rides on both systems, eliminating transfers and other additional fees from the previous payment systems. Dart is a rolling pass as each pass starts on the  first use for the time period allotted. And, for the first time, all of the new regional passes are available for reduced fare riders – seniors, people with disabilities, Medicare Cardholders, and youth - who show valid ID will have access to these reduced fares.

4-hour and 24-hour Dart passes will be available for purchase on SMART and DDOT vehicles.  All Dart passes will be available for purchase through SMART/DDOT Transit Centers, select retail outlets, online or by mail starting May 1. A mobile Dart app will be launched early this summer, where users can purchase and use Dart passes directly from their phone.

 It is anticipated that Dart will expand to the QLINE and the People Mover in the near future. 

 “Paying with Dart is going to make it much easier for Detroiters to get where they need to go.  This partnership with SMART demonstrates our commitment to working together on key initiatives that have separated our systems in the past”, said Angelica Jones, Interim Director of Detroit Department of Transportation. 

 Regional transit improvements continue in Metro Detroit

Dart comes as a number of improvements have been made to the region’s transit systems in recent years, including the introduction of the SMART FAST high frequency, limited stop bus service, DDOT ConnectTen service, capital improvements to both systems, and the introduction of the QLINE. This resulted in Detroit being one of seven places in the United States where transit ridership increased in 2017 according to an analysis completed by TransitCenter. 

For more information on DDOT, visit http://www.ridedetroittransit.com/ or call DDOT at (313) 933-1300.

For more information on SMART, visit https://www.smartbus.org/ or call SMART at (866) 962-5515.

Dart, A New Way To Pay

January Service Changes

Know before you go . . .
ROUTE CHANGES

567-New Baltimore/Lenox New route and service!
• Replaces Route 560 on 23 Mile
• Connects to the RLEMS Shuttle at Meijer on 26 Mile
562-FAST Gratiot DMC/WSU
• Will permanently operate on Woodward between Canfield and Putnam
610-Kercheval-Harper
• Will permanently operate on Warren ending at Anthony Wayne Drive
620-Charlevoix
• Routing changed from Maryland to Alter between Jefferson and Charlevoix
730-10 Mile
• New Eastbound routing around the Royal Oak Transit Center via Lafayette to 11 Mile
805-Grand River Park & Ride
• New afternoon express trips with non-stop service from downtown to Fenton Lot via M-10 to I-96
849/851-Westside Park & Ride
• Will permanently operate on West Grand Blvd/Woodward-Warren/Forest

New Schedule Look Up

TIME CHANGES, STOP CHANGES, and NEW TRIPS
     

 261 FAST Michigan   567 New Baltimore/Lenox
 445 Oakland Limited       805 Grand River Park & Ride
 461/462 FAST Woodward  849/851 Westside Park & Ride
New schedules and Service Bulletins can be viewed online to view changes and times.
Don’t forget you can call Customer Service to answer any service questions.


MySMART

Register for MySMART!

 

When you sign up for a MySMART account, you will receive a personal correspondence about your route, including:

    Service Changes

    Job Openings at SMART

    Community News Important to you

Additionally, you can receive promotional and marketing emails that update you on exciting events like:

    Holiday Pass Giveaways

    Driver Appreciation Month

    Customer Appreciation Month

    Special Events

Best of all, it’s FREE. You can subscribe or unsubscribe at any time!

How to sign up for these informational emails

When you create and log on to your MySMART account at www.smartbus.org, you will see this option:  

     

From there you can select one or both options to receive emails directly to your inbox!

It is important to select the exact routes you want to hear about. To do so, scroll to the bottom of the page after logging on to MySMART and Manage your Favorite Route:

Other ways to stay updated include Twitter or Facebook!

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