Rochester Public Transit asking for community feedback

(ABC 6 News) – Rochester Public Transit (RPT) held an open house on its Transit Development Plan at the Chateau Theatre Thursday night.

This opportunity only happens once every five years to get feedback from the public.

RPT received feedback from the public last fall to hear what was going well with Rochester’s Public Transit services and what could be improved. Now, these ideas are being presented to the community for additional feedback.

Bradley Bobbitt, Transit Operations Specialist with RPT, said the most common feedback given includes more frequent services, especially mid-day and evenings as well as people wanting to go from one side of town to the other without having to get on another bus.

"Everything right now is just an idea and we’re just looking to get feedback before we bring it to the city council for further approval," Bobbitt said.

Rochester resident Barry Skolnick said that Rochester’s transit system needs improvements. He wishes more of Rochester’s attractions were along the bus routes.

"For example, Quarry Hill Nature Center, you can’t get to the nature center directly… The History Center of Olmsted County there’s no bus that even goes within any easy walking distance of there," Skolnick said.

Skolnick said it’s not about catering just to people who are going to work, but also to people in their leisure time and tourists.

"We’re not just about density and where the population is located, it’s where the population wants to go to," he said.

This feedback is setting a plan for Rochester for the next five years.

The biggest project coming up for RPT is the Link Rapid Transit Line which is slated to start service in 2026 and will offer more frequent rides.

The feedback survey is open until the end of May. Previous virtual open houses can be found here.