Gunnison Valley RTA Public Transportation
Section 1: Agency, Service, and Fleet Overview – Ground Transportation Service Description
GVRTA provides free, deviated fixed route, open-door general public transit service between Gunnison and Mt. Crested Butte by contracting with a private provider (currently Alpine Express). The service provided is one route, 34 miles in each direction, which circles the City of Gunnison before continuing north on Hwy 135 to the towns of Crested Butte and Mt. Crested Butte with a stop at the Crested Butte South subdivision. The route connects to the free Mountain Express transit service in both the towns of Crested Butte and Mt. Crested Butte. All buses are ADA accessible. Much of the ridership is generated by employees who live in Gunnison and work at the north end of the valley.
Service is provided seven days a week, 365 days per year. Service levels vary seasonally, operating 34 one-way trips daily in the winter, 22 one-way trips daily in the summer, and 16 one-way trips daily in the spring and fall seasons. Service hours are from 6:30 AM – 12:00 AM. The deviated fixed route system is 100% wheelchair and mobility aid accessible and all vehicles are lift-equipped. Buses will deviate from the route up to 3/4 mile in the City of Gunnison for passengers requesting the service as long as they are
on a paved road with a place for the bus to access.
The number of one-way service trips GVRTA provides has varied significantly since the start of the service (2007) due to fluctuating economic conditions and sales tax revenue. To illustrate, 2008 one-way service trips provided were 5,650 but only 3,154 one-way service trips were provided in 2011. This reflects a significant decrease in sales tax revenue starting in 2010.
Since 2011 though, GVRTA has been able to grow service levels due to the economic recovery and increased sales tax rate. In 2015, GVRTA provided 5,657 one-way service trips and GVRTA will provide over 8,900 one-way service trips in 2017, which is a 282% increase from the lowest point of service provided in 2011.
As service levels increase, annual ridership is also anticipated to increase. 2013 ridership was 70,072 one way trips; 2014 ridership was 89,836 one-way trips; 2015 ridership was 114,414 one-way trips; and 2016 ridership was 144,494 one-way trips. 2017 projected ridership is 175,000 trips.