DART is creating a new long-term transit plan that will determine how its service can adapt to meet the evolving transportation needs in central Iowa. We recognize that even though we have been piloting new services to improve access and the overall experience using public transit, there are still transportation gaps and challenges keeping people from getting where they want, and need, to be.
Just as a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, the creation of our new long-term transit plan begins with input from those we serve. That’s why we need you to complete this survey and tell us how well DART’s service is meeting your travel needs and what you’d like to see from DART in the future.
Transforming mobility for a growing region
DART has not had an adopted long-range plan since 2011 but has continued to seek community input on its services over the last five years. The input received has led to more bus shelters, earlier weekday service, new or revised bus routes, and more frequent service on DART's busiest routes. With continued technology advancements, new mobility options and changing travel needs in central Iowa, it is time for DART to develop a new long-term transit plan.
The DART Board of Commissioners established these four goals for DART’s new long-term plan:
- optimize DART’s existing service;
- identify how to meet evolving transportation needs of the region;
- evaluate innovative service models that embrace advancements in technology; and
- develop a long-term vision for DART to serve the central Iowa region into the future.
These changes could include enhancements to our busiest routes, as well as new types of service like:
- Mictrotransit, which use DART vehicles to provide real-time, door-to-door service within a transit zone similar to a ride hailing service like Uber or Lyft.
- Partnerships with taxi or ride hailing companies to fill transit gaps in our region to help people connect to shopping, entertainment, work, school, medical appointments, or the greater DART network.
- Additional mobility hubs in the region, bringing multiple methods of transportation together into one space, including bus stops, bike or scooter share stations, park and ride stops for vanpools, and even car shares.
We are seeking your help to understand the mobility needs of our region and ensure we continue to carry out our mission to enrich lives, connect communities and expand opportunities for central Iowans.
What to Expect
The survey will ask your thoughts on several topics about how best to serve our region. There are no right or wrong answers, our staff, DART’s leaders and our Board of Commissioners want to ensure changes we make are fueled by feedback from our communities. The survey should take approximately 10 minutes.
The information collected from the surveys will be reviewed alongside in-depth analysis of ridership, employment and population densities, and travel patterns, to draft recommendations for how DART can evolve to meet the current and future needs of the region. These recommendations will then be shared and additional public feedback will be collected later in 2021.
Below you’ll see we’ve listed our member communities. To learn more about the services in your community and what innovations there could look like, click on a city name below to be redirected to a separate page.
- Des Moines
- Pleasant Hill
- West Des Moines
- Windsor Heights
Ways to give feedback
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, DART is offering several virtual options for riders and residents to let us know what they think.
- Survey:The survey is available in two formats:
- Virtual public meetings and online info sessions: DART is hosting six virtual public meetings, two online info sessions on Facebook Live, and one Spanish Language virtual public meeting during the month of April 2021. View the schedule for your community by looking at the list on the side or bottom of this page, or by visiting your community specific page.
Interpreters are available for any of our meetings by request. Please submit your request to DART Customer Service at least five days before your meeting by calling 515-283-8100 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Via phone call: Riders can share their thoughts on the study by calling DART Customer Service at 515-283-8100 and selecting option 0. They can either leave a comment with Customer Service, complete the survey over the phone, or request a member of DART’s Planning Team call them directly to discuss the changes.
- Via email: Riders can submit their comments to the changes by emailing comments to email@example.com.
All feedback received will be analyzed by DART staff and used to complete service options which will be shared with the public for a second round of feedback this fall.