A grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) will support public transportation between Williams, Flagstaff and the Grand Canyon in the near future.
In a recent meeting, members of the public and transportation consultants brainstormed ideas for the best way to utilize the grant.
Attendees indicated that public transportation within Williams, as well as between Williams, Flagstaff and Tusayan, for work, education, medical care, shopping, entertainment and access to the airport is important.
According to Gioia Goodrum, Williams-Grand Canyon Chamber of Commerce CEO, the community currently has a lot of high school students who are taking classes at the community college and would benefit by public transportation.
Obstacles and barriers such as cost and weather, which could hinder public transportation, were also discussed at the meeting.
After looking at both pros and cons of this project, the transportation consultants will look into several options and prioritize them:
- Setting up a regional carpooling program.
- Creating a mobility manager position to organize vanpools.
- Starting up a Williams to Flagstaff commuter route with three roundtrips each weekday.
- Identifying park-and-ride lot locations in Williams, Parks, Bellemont and Valle.
- Exploring options to start a seasonal commuter service between Williams, Tusayan and Grand Canyon Village.Community members are ready to develop the transit system using “baby steps,” and will gradually build up to more commuter options to test the community’s need. The best solution was to start small by expanding existing transit services within the corridor.The group is scheduled to meet again on Dec. 10 at 10 a.m. in the Williams Chamber of Commerce office.