Clark Reader has a great post over at Arvada Press on the 50 year history of RTD in Denver, and how things are changing with Uber, Lyft and the A-Line. Full link below.
A lot can happen in 50 years, and that is definitely the case in the world of transit. In the Denver area, the Regional Transpiration District — which launched in 1969 — has seen its share of new technologies, groundbreaking ideas, unrealized dreams and work still to be done.
But a half-century of offering mass transit options to the metro area is no small feat — one RTD is celebrating all through this year.
We connected with Dave Genova, general manager and CEO of RTD, to discuss RTD’s past, its current achievements and its future challenges.
This interview has been edited for brevity and clarity.
Tell me about the 50th year of RTD — how is RTD marking the occasion?
We started in February by rolling out a life-size 50th-anniversary logo event at Denver Union Station. We also have updated all RTD templates to reflect the 50-year logo. Additionally, RTD celebrated on its actual anniversary on July 1 by holding rider appreciation events in each of the transit agency’s 15 districts to thank the public for riding with us over the past five decades. RTD officially celebrated its 50th anniversary on Friday, July 12, with a party on Wynkoop Plaza in front of Union Station. The event featured RTD information, food trucks, music, a program with speakers and other family-friendly activities. And there will be more to come as the year continues.
What are you most excited about when it comes to the future of transportation in the metro area?
I’m excited about all the new technology that is making it easier for people to use our services. We have our partnership with Uber that allows passengers to purchase tickets in the Uber app; we also have a partnership with Lyft where folks can see our services in their app; we have our transit watch app that allows people to report any suspicious or unsafe activities seamlessly and easily. We are also excited about our 61AV route at 61st and Pena Station along the University of Colorado A Line, exploring autonomous vehicles; as well as our FlexRide microtransit service — an on-demand service where people can connect their first and last mile from select transit stations.