Detroit People Mover begins offering free rides for 2024

Detroit People Mover begins offering free rides for 2024
Posted at 10:41 AM, Jan 02, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-02 10:41:44-05

The Detroit People Mover will offer free rides throughout 2024 with a sponsored Zero Fare Pilot program.

Last month, the Detroit Transportation Corporation's Board of Directors approved the pilot program, which officially kicks off on Jan. 2.

The hope is to boost ridership by at least 50% using paid sponsorships to offset the revenue typically collected from riders at the station.

“Based on passenger feedback and our analysis, the current fare system is one of the leading barriers for convenient use. The equipment is all original to the People Mover with no electronic options – accepting only coins, tokens or magnetic-striped passes purchased in advance,” DTC GM Robert Cramer said in a statement. “Maintaining and finding parts for fare gate repairs is a growing challenge as well."

According to the DTC, replacing the outdated fare collection system would cost about $5 million, and they say an investment would not be necessary if the Zero Fare Pilot is implemented long-term.

With a number of major events coming to Downtown Detroit next year, officials say the free rides will provide Detroiters, workers and visitors more access to events.

Later this year, there will be discussion about whether or not to extend, alter or end the program for 2025.