A lot of talk has gone on lately about the number of local governments opting out of the expanded transit plan. While there have been more opt-outs than we’d like, Partners for Transit is more concerned with the number of people in Washtenaw County who will have access to excellent public transit. And here, the stats are pretty good. 71% of the population of Washtenaw County will receive service under the new transit plan, either by participation in the new authority (%) or through purchase of service agreements.
The map below shows the County with each jurisdiction weighted by population, producing a more representative look at how many of its people are getting transit.
It’s also important to remember that many of the communities that have opted out are still in conversation with AATA, and could well choose to participate in the future. Meanwhile, the more than 60,000 people of Saline and Ypsilanti Township will be able to get dramatically expanded public transportation services, where no stable funding for it ever existed before, and Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti residents will have the chance to multiply their existing service with a much more cohesive system. That’s a big step forward, and one we should continue working towards an improved transit system for the people of Washtenaw County.