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Dodge City Daily Globe - Dodge City, KS
  • Dodge City now offers service to surrounding areas

  •      After much planning and anticipation, the city of Dodge City is ready to launch their new county routes today.


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  •      After much planning and anticipation, the city of Dodge City is ready to launch their new county routes today.
         'We are very excited about the new routes," said Kathy Denhardt, mobility manager for the city of Dodge City and Ford County. "We think that this will be a very positive thing for us."
         Two new routes have been added to the door-to-door service that is already provided within a two mile radius of the city. On Tuesdays, service between Wright, Spearville and Dodge City will be provided for $2 one way from Wright and $3 one way from Spearville. On Thursdays, service will be provided between Bloom, Kingsdown, Bucklin, Ford and Dodge City for $5 one way.
         "On Thursdays we will also travel through Minneola, and if anyone would like to schedule a stop there, we would be happy to accommodate them," said Denhardt, "but there are no scheduled stops in Minneola at this time."
         Denhardt is currently in talks with several city officials in Minneola to add a scheduled stop there, but nothing has been decided yet.
         When they arrive in Dodge City, riders will be dropped off at their destination.  By planning in advance riders may take advantage of the public transportation available within the city limits to travel to different locations for just $1 a ride.
         "We want people to be able to get to as many destinations as they want while they are here, not to be stranded in one place," said Denhardt. "So, if you came in to Dodge for a doctors appointment, but then wanted to go shopping at Wal Mart and out to lunch, you can make arrangements to have the bus take you to all those locations."
         The busses will run in a loop and will make two trips per day, so that riders who leave in the morning can take the bus back in the afternoon. People may choose to ride in to Dodge in the afternoons, but they will have to have other accommodations to get back home.
         On Tuesday mornings, the bus will leave Dodge at 9:15 a.m., make the loop to Wright and Spearville and return at 10:20 a.m.   On Tuesday afternoons the bus will leave at 1:15 p.m. and return at 2:20 p.m.   Thursdays the bus will make the loop through Bloom, Kingsdown, Bucklin and Ford, leaving at 8:15 and returning at 10:15 and again in the afternoon at 1:15 p.m. and returning at 3:15.
         "Although we have set stops in each county, we can also pick people up at a different location, if it is 3/4 of a mile or less from the scheduled stop," said Denhardt.
         Riders should book their rides at least 24 hours in advance, but sooner is better notes Denhardt, so they can ensure there are enough seats available for everyone, and there is room for wheelchairs or motorized scooters if needed. More than one bus may be used if necessary.
    Page 2 of 2 -      Children five and under may ride the bus for free with an adult present, and children 11 and older may ride without an adult, however they must be able to show the driver proof of their age. Denhardt also asks that riders carry exact change as bus drivers will not be able to make change for them. They plan to offer punch cards that will be good for multiple rides.
         If you have any questions about the new bus routes, or would just like someone to ride along with you the first time so you feel more comfortable, Denhardt said she would be more than willing to help out.
         Currently the busses that run in Dodge City are averaging about 8,000 rides a year, with the addition of these new routes they are estimating an additional 1,500 rides from each route yearly.
         "We think that this new route system will really increase the number of people who take advantage of our pubic transportation," said Denhardt. "I think we will see a significant increase and it will be very beneficial for everyone."
         To schedule a ride call (620) 225-8119 or, after July 30 call (877) 323-3626.
    Reach Julia Kazar at (620) 408-993 or e-mail her at julia.kazar@dodgeglobe.com
     
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