College and City leaders will meet at 11 a.m. Monday, Aug. 12 at the clock tower on the Washington Street Campus to roll out an all-new transportation collaboration made possible by a $25,000 gift from Amarillo National Bank.
The alliance provides free rides beginning Aug. 15 for anyone with an AC identification card, inclusive of all City bus routes and Spec-Trans services, six days a week for an entire year – and potentially beyond.
“We’ve known for a long time that access to reliable transportation is something many of our students struggle with,” Cara Crowley, AC’s vice president of strategic initiatives, said. “This is a very proactive and collaborative effort to remove barriers to student success.
“Because of this gratifying gift, our entire student body and our workforce can enjoy free transportation, not just to and from some of our most-populous campuses, but to all destinations served by City Transit.”
Throughout the year ahead, everybody within the AC family may freely ride City buses for school or work, shopping or recreation from 6:20 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Saturday.
Crowley said continuation of the transportation initiative beyond 2020 is contingent on its popularity and success in this, its inaugural year.
City buses long have served AC’s West, Downtown and Washington Street campuses and will continue to do so; however, service to Washington Street, the College’s busiest campus, will be ramped up significantly.
Amarillo Transit Director Marita Wellage-Reiley said Bus Route 41 already stops at the Washington Street Campus hourly, but the bus traveling on Route 42 will be re-routed to additionally serve the campus every 30 minutes on weekdays.
“We’re hoping this initiative will increase our ridership tremendously,” Wellage-Reiley said. “The City believes in a highly educated population and we are willing to do anything we can to help promote that.”