Updated paratransit vehicles offer enhanced safety, comfort
VIA Metropolitan Transit announces it is replacing its VIAtransit (paratransit) fleet of vans and increasing capacity for the growing service available to riders with disabilities and older adults. Three of the new paratransit vans went into full service on Friday, May 14.
VIA is replacing its aged 117 VIAtrans vans with new 2020 Ford fleet of 124 VIAtrans vans. Starting May 24, VIA anticipates replacing four to eight new vans in service per week. The expected date of final delivery is July 2021.
The replacement fleet has many enhanced features including an additional handrail for safe and easy boarding; more hip-to-knee space; and upgraded suspension for a smoother ride.
“Our paratransit service provides essential trips for the many customers who rely on VIAtrans to make connections to their jobs, doctor’s appointments, shopping, errands, and other commitments,” VIA President/CEO Jeffrey C. Arndt said. “We are continuously working to enhance our passengers’ experience and expand mobility options.”
With social distancing, the new paratransit vans can transport up to four seated passengers and one person in a wheelchair, or three seated passengers and two people in wheelchairs. The new vans provide more room for larger wheelchairs, and a more open and spacious floor plan layout.
On average there are more than 1 million annual boardings on VIAtrans. It is a shared-ride, curb-to-curb service that offers independence through mobility and expands access to opportunity via transit. Visit our VIAtrans page for more information.