Metra Will Hold Feb. 1 Open House To Get Kane County Feedback On Proposed Fare Structure

Metra Will Hold Feb. 1 Open House To Get Kane County Feedback On Proposed Fare Structure

Metra will hold a series of public open houses next month — starting Feb. 1 right here at the Kane County Government Center — to gather customer feedback about several potential changes to its fare structure and ticket options.

That first forum will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 1, at the Kane County Government Center, 719 Batavia Ave., Geneva.

Metra’s latest fare increases will go into effect the same day as the Geneva forum. The price of a one-way ticket will increase by 25 cents in all zones, the price of a 10-ride ticket will increase by $4.25 to $7.75 and price of a monthly pass will increase by $9 to $12.50.

MetraCustomers who cannot attend one of the open houses can review the study recommendations and provide comments online. Metra is also welcoming public comments sent to via email. Additional study information can be found at this Metra website page.

Metra is considering the following changes:

  • Creating a Day Pass to promote ridership.
  • Offering discounts for riding during non-rush hour (off-peak) times.
  • Creating a unique fare zone for downtown stations.
  • Merging the outermost fare zones to simplify the fare structure.
  • Addressing pricing inconsistencies due to indirect track configurations.
  • Standardizing incremental fare zone charges to simplify fares.

“What we are hoping to do is to modify our fare structure and ticket options in ways that work well for Metra’s customers and also help Metra make the best use of available resources and capacity,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski.

The effort started in the summer of 2016, when Metra hired California-based Four Nines Technologies to study Metra’s fare structure, determine opportunities for changes and develop a model to help Metra evaluate the potential changes. The company’s work included conducting a survey of Metra customers last spring and holding a workshop with the Metra Board of Directors last month, where board members selected several proposals to present to customers and the public for their feedback before further Board consideration.

The goal of this initiative is to create a flexible fare structure that allows Metra to segment and price markets differently; give Metra more flexibility to increase fare revenue while providing more control over ridership impacts from fare changes; encourage off-peak travel and better use off-peak capacity; and redefine zones to define premium destinations and address perceived inconsistencies.

People can view Metra’s full list of proposals and other scheduled forum details on the agency’s website.

SOURCE: Metra, city of Geneva websites

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