Public comment period opens for Wave Transit route changes

Wave Transit (Photo: WWAY)

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The ninety-day public comment period for Wave Transit’s impending Network Redesign is officially open.

Public comments can be submitted online or in-person at Forden Station (505 Cando St) and Padgett Station (520 N. 3rd St). Two public hearings will be held during the public comment period.

In January 2020, New Hanover County and the City of Wilmington announced they will work toward a new interlocal agreement for Wave Transit. In February 2020, a revised Board of Directors, comprised of staff from the County and the City, as well as the Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (WMPO), was appointed as the governing body to oversee revisions brought forth under the new chapter.

In an effort to identify solutions to the funding challenges faced by Wave Transit, New Hanover County and the City of Wilmington engaged an outside transportation consultant to conduct a diagnostic assessment for potential cost-saving opportunities and ultimately, to design a transportation network that provides long-term financial stability.

In May 2021, the City, County, and the Authority’s Board of Directors voted to postpone the system network redesign. The postponement afforded the incoming Executive Director, along with staff, an opportunity to conduct a comprehensive data analysis and in-depth review of the current network, as well as options presented in the adopted revised network. A draft set of staff recommendations was presented to Wave Transit’s Board of Directors for review and consideration in November 2021. The draft reflects the Authority’s primary objective to create a long-term sustainable budget. Staff focused on utilizing existing resources to create efficiencies to the current network, in conjunction with improvements featured in the consultant’s model.

On January 27, 2022 the Board of Directors will vote on the draft system network for public transportation services to be presented to customers and the greater community for public feedback. A general feedback survey is available online and can also be submitted at any transfer facility. Several options for public feedback opportunities will be offered during the formal, ninety-day public comment period.

Following the Board vote on January 27, 2022, further information on the revisions for fixed-route bus service, the Port City Trolley, ADA Paratransit service, and Microtransit service will be published to the project page on the Authority’s website. Changes will also be prominently displayed on buses and communicated through our social media platforms, Facebook and Twitter: @WavetransitILM. Additional information can also be obtained by phone through Wave Transit offices at: (910) 343-0106.

The public comment period will conclude at 5:00 pm on Wednesday, April 13, 2022.

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