TARC Negotiating New Contract for Disabled Rider Service

by Gabe Bullard on February 27, 2012

The Transit Authority of River City will soon enter talks for a new contract for the agency’s TARC3 service.

TARC3 is for people who can’t ride standard buses. The vehicles visit riders’ homes and the schedules and routes are adjusted to create the most convenient service possible. But even though it’s convenient, the service isn’t the most efficient for TARC to provide.

“We have two-hundred-and-twenty-some-odd buses and then about 15 trolleys that are on the road. To provide these services, we often do contract them out. It’s very expensive to provide TARC3 service,” says spokesman Jon Reiter.

The previous TARC3 contract with MV Transportation expires this year. After reviewing other bids, the TARC board has authorized Director Barry Barker to begin talks with First Transit for a five-year TARC3 contract valued at around $55 million. That contract would begin in October. Reiter says there’s enough time built in that service shouldn’t be interrupted.

“We don’t think so, but there’s certainly going to be a transition process that’s going to have to be undergone,” he says. “I would think any disruption would be minimal. We’re trying to look out for these folks.”

Barker will also negotiate with Yellow Cab, which currently handles about 15 percent of TARC3 service.

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