OSKALOOSA, Iowa — A new bus service has begun in Oskaloosa. A group of community leaders met to discuss transportation needs in the city. It is estimated currently 6% of the people and Mahaska County do not have access to vehicle transportation. As a result of those meetings a new two year pilot program was formed.
The service runs on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. It runs on an hourly loop throughout the community. It stops at places like Penn Central Mall, the hospital, and Walmart. Kids under 18 can ride for free, while for adults the fare is just one dollar.
“We’re starting with three days a week because we need to know what the demand will be,” said Amy Langdon, who is Executive Director of United Way of Mahaska County. She added, “if people want to use us to get to jobs even on the weekend then we’ll do that.”
Dylan Mulfinger works as an analyst for the city of Oskaloosa. He worked with the regional transit Authority, the Iowa Department of Transportation, and other local officials to put together the two year pilot program. “We felt that this bus route service could get them access to the convenience stores, hospitals, parks, and other attractions in town,” said Mulfinger.
Officials plan to reassess the service within six months, and adjust the service when they know how many people will use it.