DART Long Term Service Plans and Optimization

Planning for the Future

DART’s commission adopted a vision in 2019 to “facilitate affordable, seamless mobility options to support economic prosperity for all in Greater Des Moines.” With that aspirational vision in mind, a Transit Optimization Study was deployed, community input received, and proposals and plans created to help achieve.

Transit Optimization Study Results
Take a deep dive into this 86-page booklet filled with compelling insights, growing needs, and details related to service enhancements.

Regional Focus

Guiding the study’s work were three goals —

  1. Optimize existing service to ensure that public mobility services are efficient and effective
  2. Incorporate innovative service and business models to DART’s regional mobility offerings
  3. Develop a long-term vision for DART service and identify recommendations for how best to achieve state goals and evolving needs of member communities.


Express Routes - Systemwide
Feedback on trip times and an analysis of ridership on Express Routes led to changes to schedules for Express Routes which were made in June 2022.

DART on Demand - WDM
West Des Moines riders and residents provided input on a new pilot program featuring on-demand service in Spring 2022. This will be similar to on-demand services created in Ankeny. 

Your feedback in action

Thank you to all who rallied, despite the pandemic, to provide feedback into both phases of our region’s Transit Optimization Study. Through creativity and perseverance, we found a way to connect! Please take a moment to review the results, as well as future plans to support the needs of our growing communities.

Recommendations for Transit Optimization
Explore the guiding principles and performance targets that influenced the recommendations and scroll through the enhancements. Each includes its goal, a brief description, rider impact and cost impact.

Technology & Mobility Providers
See why we are so excited by the opportunity to use emerging technologies and work with new mobility providers. Key acronym: MOD (Mobility on Demand).

Market Analysis
Review key variables such as population density, the mismatch between jobs and housing, and the mapping of emerging opportunity areas. Of note: Getting to and from jobs is the #1 reason given for riding DART.

Transit Resources
Meet the entire family of friendly, flexible transportation services.

Service Enhancements
Review the full scope of proposals in bite-sized detail accompanied by helpful visual maps. They range from projects that are happening now with existing resources, to longer-term enhancements.

Guiding and Design Principles
You will see that these read more like commitment statements and are supported by an integration of components within our 12 member communities whose collective impact lifts the transit network performance for the entire region.

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