Metro Bus serves the St. Cloud area and plans significant changes over the next couple years.  Metro Bus Chief Operating Officer Dave Green joined me on WJON.  He says ridership numbers are seeing a significant rebound which amounts to a 10% increase in ridership year over year.  Green says they serve approximately 70,000 to 80,000 rides per month.  He explains one route that isn't seeing a big increase in ridership is the Northstar Link.  Green believes more people working from home and less occupancy of commercial buildings are playing a role.

AM 1240 WJON logo
Get our free mobile app

Metro Bus identifies each of their routes by numbers not "named" destinations.  Green says this changed in 2016.  He says they are currently working with a consultant who also recommends numbers over names.  Green believes a number can be easier for riders where destinations could be confusing because there are multiple stops on each route.

Green says Metro Bus is looking at their entire system.  They are reaching out to users with a survey that's available on the Metro Bus website.  Green says they reached out to many businesses and currently have a focus group made up of community members.  He says there will be more information on the survey and potential changes to Metro Bus.  Green expects to gather information from the public over the next year with the implementation of changes starting in 2026.  He says the goal is to make riding Metro Bus easier and more convenient.  Green says:

There is going to be big, big changes that are going to be coming in the future...obviously we need to figure out what that looks like and we need to operate within the constraints and resources we have.  Our goal is to get back to convenience that works for our customers.

Metro Bus
Metro Bus

Green says there confusion sometimes with their Dial a Ride program.  He says it's an eligibility service which is a supplement to their fixed route service.  Green says Dial a Ride is not a Uber type service but it rather allows rides to be setup between 7 days out and 1 day out.  Dial a Ride isn't for same day service and it is a ride share program.

Green says they are excited about the new secondary Metro Bus transit hub coming to Waite Park.  He says this new location will allow them to provide quicker service and provide more options for people to get to where they need to. Green says the new hub will allow for better connections, more efficiency and shorter rides.

If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Metro Bus COO Dave Green, it is available below.



Come With Us and Visit Clearwater, MN in Pictures

More From AM 1240 WJON