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Examiner
  • The bus stops here

  • Starting in July, Eastern Jackson County bus riders will have the opportunity to get on board a new route.

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  • Starting in July, Eastern Jackson County bus riders will have the opportunity to get on board a new route.
    Designed to provide more options for riders accessing medical resources, the Centerpoint Route – as it is being called for now – will begin July 6, operating from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. It is the city’s first bus route to intersect with existing fixed routes at points other than the Independence MetroCenter off of Truman and Noland roads.
    With an estimated $96,000 annual cost, the HCA Midwest Health System tax increment financing agreement will provide the funding, not the city’s general fund, City Manager Robert Heacock said. The TIF plan originally asked for funding to provide transportation services to and from the Centerpoint Medical Center facility.  
    “We’re trying to maximize funds available for this new bus service in the Centerpoint TIF agreement,” Heacock said.
    The new route will start at MetroCenter, travel east to Lee’s Summit Road and then travel south on Lee’s Summit Road to the Midwest Genealogy Library, 3440 S. Lee’s Summit Road.
    From the library, the route will travel west on 35th Street to Noland Road, where it will intersect with the Purple Route (No. 284). The Purple Route runs north and south primarily along Noland Road and includes stops at 35th and 39th streets.
    While returning east along 39th Street to Lee’s Summit Road, the new route will go south and will stop at the Social Security Administration office, 4240 S. Lee’s Summit Road.
    Lastly, the route will stop at Centerpoint Medical Center, where it will intersect with the Green Route (No. 183). The Green Route runs north and south mostly along Missouri 291. Bus schedules will be available in June.
    Bus fare will remain equivalent to other routes, and passengers may use all Kansas City Area Transportation Authority passes and discusses on the route.
    A 12-passenger minibus with two positions for wheelchairs will serve as the route’s vehicle. 
    KCATA has told the city of Independence that it will provide the same level of service to the city in fiscal year 2010-11 without increasing its costs, Heacock said. That fiscal year will begin on July 1.
    “I will be recommending maintaining the city funding, which would allow the current level of service to be continued,” Heacock said.
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