Riders on public transit may have noticed a big change getting on the bus: a new tap to pay system.
“Riders don’t have to pre-prepare in any way or get fares ahead of time,” Humboldt Transit Authority financial manger Katie Collender said. “They can just take their card, go on the bus, and tap it.”
Each fare comes with two hours of unlimited taps in between buses at the cost of only one fare of $2.
This system also has fare caps set for weekly and monthly riders.
Riders can still use paper passes, cash or the Token Transit app for payment.
Another change in the testing phase is the RideHumboldt flex app.
“The RideHumboldt app is going to be for the public to be able to book microtransit rides. Microtransit basically kind of like an uber or lyft,” Collender said. “But these rides will be on demand, bus stop to bus stop. Not door to door.”
When the RideHumboldt app officially launches, riders can get from point A to point B.
This will also be connected to a website and phone number for those to call and book rides in the same day.
It’s not openly available for the public quite yet, but those who have access to the app can test it out for themselves.
The humboldt transit authority also is preparing for the 20-24 launch of the redwood coast express route from eureka to ukiah.
“It’ll allow additional travelers to use that route. Right now, it’s serviced by Greyhound and Amtrak and it will connect from the Oregon coast with Del Norte transit all the way down to Ukiah and beyond to the Bay Area and their local transit,” Collender said.
But that is not the only big news.
Eleven new extended range hydrogen-fueled buses are scheduled to join the fleet next year thanks to a state-funded grant.
“It’s (the buses) based on a new flyer bus that’s already hydrogen-fueled cell that’s been in production for awhile,” Collender said. “But we are actually part of the r&d (research and development) with this grant to extend the range of these buses.”
The first of the 11 buses will join the fleet next October.
Riders across Humboldt can also use the Transit app to map their routes and check on wait times.
A new downtown bus station is also in the planning stages.