Thursday, July 13, 2023

Updates and opportunities


WisDOT is updating its active transportation plan. Comments are due by JULY 14. Find the plan and comment form at

The LATA leaders meeting has been postponed from July 13 to July 20 from 5:30 to 6:30 so people can attend the important July 13 city council meeting at 6 p.m. If you would like to attend the July 20 meeting (online), please email or call 608-315-2693 for the Zoom link.

The MTU will be at the July 22 Disability Pride Fest from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Copeland Park with one of their new buses with the new Quantum system that lets wheelchair riders lock themselves into place. LATA could not find enough volunteers for a booth, but if you go, consider taking and handing out LATA cards. Email or call to get some.

We are working on an August in-person event, possibly with the MTU. We hope to have a date and location finalized soon and a flyer available by or before August 1.

Please take a little extra time after your next trip to complete the Audible Stop Audit form. The ADA requires major stops on public transit to be announced by voice or recording, but we have found that often there are no announcements and sometimes they are too soft to hear or too late to be of any use. We would like to have some data for the MTU in requesting better adherence to this rule, if needed. The form asks for date, time, bus number, route number, and what stops you actually heard (and whether you could actually hear them). Find the form here:

AMTRAK: Please call Rep. Van Orden (202-225-5506) Tell him that you want him to vote against cuts to federal funding of passenger rail in the Fiscal Year 2024 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) Bill. Please forward this action request to other transit/rail supporters.

More information is available on this effort by clicking this link -
Several grassroots initiatives are highlighting the need for seating at transit stops. Where there are no shelters, often there are no seats. If transit wants more choice riders, we must have better accommodations at stops, including seating. Currently, for many, waiting for the bus means sitting on a curb, sidewalk, or even on the boulevard grass. This article is about a group in Denton, Texas that made its own benches from pallets and drops them at stops where seating has been requested. You may remember that Wisconsin Transit Riders Alliance hosted the group, No Bus Cuts Denton, at an online program earlier this year. Here's one about a man who started making simple benches after seeing a woman sitting in the dirt waiting for a bus. And, in this Bloomberg article, a variety of grassroots-built benches are highlighted. Maybe LATA could work on creating some simple bus seating for worthy stops in 2024? What do you think? Just for fun, where would YOU like to see a bus bench? Fill out the form, and we'll report which stops get the most mentions later this year. Share the link:

We are still working on scheduling a fall ride to Viroqua on the SMRT bus. More details will ve available around September 1.