Thomas Merton Center, Inc. (Pittsburghers for Public Transit)
This year, Pittsburghers for Public Transit is proposing systemic change to PAAC’s process of decision-making, by insisting that riders, bus operators and other stakeholders be collaborators from the start. We are using the Port Authority’s RFP for a mobile fare payment app as a test case, by putting forward rider suggestions for the RFP and insisting that riders be part of the selection body to determine the most effective and equitable transit fare app. This dovetails with our larger fare equity campaign, as our existing fare payment systems have limitations that disproportionately penalize low-income riders and families that the mobile fare payment app could help address. In addition, with our greater set of campaign planks laid out in our Riders’ Vision for Public Transit, we are calling on the Port Authority to collaborate with riders on tangible improvements to the system, including extending our dedicated busway network, linking transit policy with affordable housing policy, and implementing free transfers and fare capping.