Ashland to consider bus fare changes

The Ashland City Council will consider bus system changes that would boost current $1 fares to $2, but would provide free passes for high school students and low-income adults and senior citizens, and $1 rides to people working in Ashland.

The city government also could team with a private shuttle service that would focus on hotels.

The council will meet at 7 tonight in the Ashland Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main St.

The new fare arrangement could begin in January 2012 if approved by the council.

For years, the city of Ashland has tinkered with a subsidy it provides to Rogue Valley Transportation District to improve bus service and lower fares in town.

Bus use skyrocketed from 2003 to 2006 when the city subsidized free bus rides in Ashland, but that became prohibitively expensive.

Since then, the city has tried various changes to fares and bus frequency, but never achieved the success of those years when riding the bus was free for everyone.

In other business tonight, the council will:

  • Hear an update on ongoing work for the Water Conservation and Reuse Study and Comprehensive Water Master Plan.
  • Consider whether to adopt criteria for waiving city planning fees when a house is destroyed or substantially damaged by a disaster.
  • Decide whether to use two city-owned properties on Clay Street and Chitwood Lane for affordable housing or sell them when real estate market conditions improve.

Alternately, the Ashland Parks and Recreation Department has also expressed interest in using the Chitwood Lane property for a park.

For a complete list of agenda items and for details on each item, visit

Staff reporter Vickie Aldous can be reached at 541-479-8199 or

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