TULSA - A new regional transit plan for Tulsa could mean more convenience for passengers, just as Tulsa Transit rolls out some new buses.
Tamisha Walker depends on Tulsa Transit buses to get around town.
She says compared to other cities, Tulsa has some catching up to do.
"I'm glad we got buses, but they need to do a little better job," Walker said.
INCOG, the Indian Nations Council of Goverments, just adopted FAST Forward, a 30-year plan to bring Tulsa's public transportation up to speed.
At the same time, Tulsa Transit unveiled 15 new buses running on CNG. The buses were paid for by federal grants. Tulsa Transit plans to convert all 100 of its buses from diesel CNG.
"Right now we're paying about $3 a gallon for fuel. And we're hopeful we'll be able to pay something in the neighborhood of $1 a gallon for CNG vehicles. So long range and even in the short term, our savings would be significant," said Bill Cartwright, general manager of Tulsa Transit.
Tulsa Transit will update its schedules soon, staying in line with FAST Forward's recommendations. It will offer passengers more hours, especially on evenings and weekends.
"Even small cities like Reno have three times a bigger budget than Tulsa Transit. Cities like Indianapolis and Kansas City have several transportation options, and I think we'd strive to be like cities such as those," said Viplav Putta, transportation planning manager at INCOG.
More than 2,000 passengers travel route 105 on Peoria Avenue every day. It's one of seven high traffic corridors INCOG officials are studying, hoping to find ways to alleviate congestion and improve travel times. They'll focus on areas at Harvard and Yale, the Broken Arrow expressway, 3rd street and Admiral and three circulator routes downtown.
Ten years down the line, FAST Forward could even bring a light rail service to the city. For now, INCOG estimates it'll cost $3-5 million a year to implement immediate plans.
Officials say the price of bus tickets won't go up. They're still looking at ways to fund the next few years of the Fast Forward plan.
For more information, visit the FAST Forward website below.