Tuesday, July 08, 2014
Commuter Bus Operator Can't Sustain Bus Service Between Downtown Indy and Carmel And Fishers Without More Subsidies
It should give pause to the crack public transit planners who insist that an expanded metropolitan mass transit bus service for the Indianapolis metropolitan area is just what the doctor ordered, but I doubt this is how they will interpret this news. Miller Transportation has been providing daily bus service for three years now for commuters living in Carmel and Fishers to downtown Indy for $5 per one-way trip, which works out to about $200 a month for daily commuting. That's not a bad fare for luxury coaches furnished with WiFi and restrooms. And federal tax law permits the commuters to set aside up to $130 a month in pre-tax earnings for the cost of using mass transit. There are three morning pick-up times between 6:30 a.m. and 7:45 a.m., and three return times between 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. The commute time is 45 minutes each way. The Louisville-based transportation company says it can't collect enough fares daily to sustain the two routes. Miller says it only needs to bring in about $550 a day to operate one bus making a twice-daily route. There are currently about 100 riders taking advantage of the Fishers route daily. Millers says there would be a significant drop-off in riders if it raised its fares. Hence, it wants a subsidy to continue the express bus service.