Información en español
A single ride on Battle Creek Transit buses has cost $1.25 for the last 19 years, and staff have proposed a 50-cent fare increase – and several other changes – to help better fund operations and services.
Transit leaders started this process and conversation early in 2020, then postponed it as we have worked through different requirements and provided public transit service during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As pandemic restrictions continue to lessen, we are starting this process again.
On March 4, the Public Transportation Commission approved moving forward with the fare increase in 2022. You can watch the replay of that meeting here: https://youtu.be/z1IiGx7e0h0. The fare increase discussion starts at 26:30.
The City Commission will hold a public hearing on the proposed increases during the regular meeting on Tuesday, April 19. The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 10 N. Division St. To give official public comment, you must attend the meeting in person, or email CityClerk@battlecreekmi.gov before the meeting. Staff will share emailed comments with the commission, but will not read them aloud at the meeting.
Anyone who needs a free ride to this meeting can call Transit at 269-966-3474 – you must call no later than 5 p.m. on Monday, April 18.
Anyone unable to attend the meeting can offer written comments to Public Transit Director Mallory Avis at 339 W. Michigan Ave., Battle Creek, MI 49037, or email@example.com. Avis must receive written comments by Monday, April 18.
The proposed fare increases are:
- Single bus ride – $1.25 to $1.75
- Reduced fare bus ride – 60 to 85 cents
- Multiple-ride bus passes – $6-$32 to $8-45
- Tele-Transit ADA and reduced fare – $2 to $3
Bus transfers would remain free, and bus rides for children under 42 inches tall would remain free. Tele-Transit single rides and multiple-ride passes for regular-rate passengers would remain the same as the current costs; those passes for reduced-rate passengers will see an increase.
The proposed increases would generate an additional $141,757 in revenue, without implementing a transfer fee. The Public Transportation Committee and the city’s Human Relations Board previously challenged staff to develop a solution that keeps transfers free to riders.
The last Battle Creek Transit single ride fare increase was in 2003, from $1 to $1.25 (25 percent). The proposed increase this year is a 40 percent increase.
Staff has worked to improve Transit services to the community while also addressing greater expenses than revenues. Transit has received various grants, participated in community events, and continues work on new branding. Staff are working to get Battle Creek Transit onto Google Transit, upgrade the dispatch system, and just celebrated the one-year anniversary of the Calhoun County-wide, on-demand BCGo.
Transit staff analyzed the impacts of a fare increase and service reductions, and believe the fare increase will have less negative impact for riders. Staff found that approximately 40 percent of households in the community do not have a vehicle.
“Limited transportation alternatives leave many neighbors without other options,” Avis said. “We need to make sure we can continue operating at the current levels, and also want to improve Transit services for our riders. We think this is the best solution to meet those needs.”
If approved by the City Commission, the fare increases would go into effect on July 1, 2022.