Cambridge City
MA

Policy Order
POR 2020 #10
Order Adopted as Amended
Jan 27, 2020 5:30 PM

That the City Manager is requested to confer with relevant City Departments, and, where relevant, the MBTA and counterparts in other municipalities for routes not wholly in Cambridge, on the feasibility of instituting and funding a fare-free pilot bus program.

Information

Department:City Clerk's Office, AMSponsors:Vice Mayor Alanna Mallon, Councillor Jivan Sobrinho-Wheeler, Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui
Category:Policy Order

Attachments

  1. Printout
  2. ORIGINAL ORDER #5

Body

WHEREAS:

Public transportation offers a crucial service to Cambridge residents, as 28% of residents rely on public transportation to get to work, and a quarter of a million public transportation rides start or end in Cambridge each day; and

 

 

WHEREAS:

The cost of public transportation can be burdensome for low-income residents, especially after the MBTA fare increases during Summer 2019; and

 

 

WHEREAS:

The City already supports transit access for low-income residents by, for example, providing free MBTA passes to eligible Cambridge Rindge and Latin School students, but increasing the scope of transit justice efforts could benefit vulnerable communities; and

 

 

WHEREAS:

Other municipalities across the United States, including Lawrence, MA, Kansas City, MO, and Olympia, WA, have found success with implementing free public transportation pilot programs, experiencing increased ridership, quicker boarding, more efficient and timely route coverage, and positive community feedback, and the Boston City Council is considering a fare-free bus route; and

 

 

WHEREAS:

Cambridge has a vested interest in encouraging public transportation use, as increasing ridership and decreasing car trips aligns with the City’s Climate Action Plan, and overarching commitment to sustainability; and

 

 

WHEREAS:

Furthermore, free public transportation would support the Envision Cambridge mobility goals on equity and accessibility, as well as climate mitigation and resilience; and

 

 

WHEREAS:

Creating a pilot program for one bus route that has a high level of ridership and high connectivity levels within Cambridge, such as the #1, #68 or #69 routes, could grant meaningful insight on the feasibility of expanding free ridership in the future; now therefore be it

 

 

ORDERED:

That the City Manager be and is hereby requested to confer with relevant City Departments, and, where relevant, the MBTA and counterparts in other municipalities for routes not wholly in Cambridge, on the feasibility of instituting and funding a fare-free pilot bus program; and be it further

 

 

ORDERED:

That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to report back to the City Council in a timely manner.

 

Meeting History

Jan 27, 2020 5:30 PM Video City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

BY AFFIRMATIVE VOTE OF NINE MEMBERS

RESULT:ORDER ADOPTED AS AMENDED