Jule Transit Posts Record Month

Nov. 25, 2014
More than 50,000 rides in October

The Jule’s route restructuring in January 2014, including crosstown Express service, new service areas, and extended service hours, has led to continuing ridership growth for Dubuque’s transit system. October marked a record month for transit ridership in Dubuque at 51,542 rides, a 16.5 percent increase from rides provided in October 2013.

This year’s increases are building on previous years’ success. transit ridership in Dubuque has increased from 373,376 to 478,370 (over 100,000 rides or 28 percent) in the past five years. As with previous years, the number of riders paying fares and purchasing passes has remained a consistent proportion of the ridership. Growth in ridership for those purchasing The Jule’s unlimited ride monthly pass has grown by over 200 percent since the route overhaul last January and the new offering of an unlimited ride pass for elderly and disabled (Medicare) passengers with the fare increase in July. 

To explain the transition from daily ride fares to passes, Transit Director Candace Eudaley noted, “We’ve seen a shift from people paying cash each time they ride to purchasing a month-long pass.  We’re hearing from passengers who started out riding occasionally and are now making the commitment to ride daily or even use transit as their main commuting mode. For passengers who plan to ride the bus every day, the monthly unlimited ride pass is definitely the most cost-effective option.”  

For full-fare passengers, the monthly unlimited ride pass is $45 and for half-fare eligible riders (those over 65 years old or carrying a Medicare card), the cost of the unlimited monthly pass is $22.50.

“We see this inlflux in monthly pass riders as a signal that the route changes made in January are making transit a more feasible option for commuters, students and anyone looking to reduce their environmental impact or save money on gas, maintenance and parking.”  

The Jule continues to provide free service to all Dubuque K-12 students to and from school as well as to library, sports, music, and other activities and the number of student rides is also increasing. Jule staff have been coordinating with District music teachers to bring students from different schools together for orchestra practice using The Jule. 

The January route changes resulted in shortened ride times, more service areas, and extended hours; with many trip times under 30 minutes and new 15-minute service from the west end to downtown on the Express bus.