Starting May 22, Laketran will increase its hours of operation on its Local Routes 1-9 and door-to-door Dial-a-Ride service.
Under the new extended service hours, Laketran will operate Monday – Friday from 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. with new hourly service. Laketran’s Route 4 that connects Madison and Painesville and Route 9 that travels between Tyler Boulevard in Mentor to downtown Painesville will now operate on Saturdays, as well.
By increasing service hours, Laketran’s goal is to support local businesses, as well as social and cultural events through the county, by providing more access for people who rely on public transportation.
“The new hours will give employees reliable transportation to get to work at 6:00 a.m., but also provide seniors and people with disabilities opportunities to enjoy evening events, like concerts in the park or just dining out later than 7:00 at night,” shared Laketran CEO Ben Capelle.
Laketran’s Local Routes and Dial-a-Ride provide over 260,000 transit trips annually to get people to work, which is 65% of its total Local Route ridership and 48% of its Dial-a-Ride ridership.
The majority of Laketran riders are going to work and the agency believes these new hours will help more people have reliable transportation to access unfilled jobs.
Capelle shared that Laketran surveyed manufacturers along Tyler Boulevard and learned 61% of the businesses operated earlier than Laketran could get employers there.
“We need our routes to start at 5 a.m., so employees can begin work at 6 a.m.”, explained Capelle. “Our manufacturing industry provides a significant amount of jobs in Lake County and these businesses are struggling to find people to fill their jobs. This is one way Laketran can help businesses and impact our local economy.”
“I already talked with one rider, who will be able to earn $2 more an hour working later than 7:00 p.m. at a manufacturer in Mentor,” shared Capelle. “That is a significant wage increase for anyone.”
Customers that rely on Laketran’s signature door-to-door Dial-a-Ride service, primarily used by seniors and people with disabilities, will also benefit from the extended hours.
“Previously, our last reservation window for Dial-a-Ride trip was 7:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. and it will now be 8:30 p.m. -9:00 p.m.,” said Capelle. “We know senior isolation is rampant and we hope to see more seniors enjoying community events with these new hours.”