MTA to discount some city bus fares

Grade school students, senior citizens and people with disabilities will begin enjoying broader discounts with the Macon Transit Authority beginning Friday.

General manager Rick Jones said the discounts had been greatly limited, and the students got their discounts only on days when school was in session. The new discounts apply to every hour that the authority’s buses run, Jones said.

People 62 and older and those with disabilities will pay 65 cents for a ride instead of the usual $1.25. The students will pay 75 cents.

Jones said the authority also is developing a $50 monthly plan for students at Macon State College, Central Georgia Technical College and Virginia College.

Students interested in those fares should talk to their student affairs department.

Service also is expected to improve with the arrival of new buses. Earlier this year, Macon Transit replaced five buses.

Another three buses arrived Thursday. Five more are expected next week.

The eight newest buses should go into service within the next two weeks, after fare boxes and other equipment is installed.

The new buses are popular, Jones said.

“We’ve got folks wanting to know when we’ll put them on their routes,” Jones said.

The 13 newer buses, called cutaway buses and resembling large church buses, are much cheaper and run more efficiently than the traditional transit buses.

They’ll represent about half of the authority’s fleet of 28 buses.

Another new bus was ordered but was destroyed in a factory accident. Jones said he didn’t know when a replacement bus would arrive.

Macon Transit also is working to add computer-aided dispatch and vehicle locators to the system, which will let people at Terminal Station know when their buses will arrive.

To contact writer Mike Stucka, call 744-4251.