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Archive for Thursday, April 20, 1995

VAN SYSTEM FALLS SHORT, FORUM FINDS

April 20, 1995

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The need for expanded public transportation in Lawrence got a thorough hearing Wednesday during a community forum.

The consensus among participants was that the city's demand-response program, which provides van service on request, falls short of meeting all the needs in the community, said Ed Dutton, chair of the Douglas County Advocacy Council on Aging. He moderated Wednesday's forum.

``We're planning on requesting funding for a route system,'' Dutton said.

Other transportation services, such as Douglas County Senior Services' Bus 62 and the systems operated by the Lawrence Public Schools and the KU Bus Service, address the needs of some special populations, Dutton said.

Panelists and audience members were concerned, he said, that other segments of the population, such as low-income residents, were being bypassed for services.

Dutton said about 70 people attended the forum.

Panelists were Ann Branden, executive director of Independence Inc. and chair of the Douglas County Community Transportation Coordinating Council; Cliff Blair, director of Douglas County Area Transportation; Fred Sherman, transportation planner for the city of Lawrence; Alan Black, Kansas University professor of urban planning; and Pat Weaver, associate research scientist in the KU Transportation Center.

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