ClasTran

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ClasTran is a bus transit service that serves senior citizens, people with disabilities, and rural riders by prior reservation in Jefferson, Shleby and Walker counties.

The service is administrated by the Birmingham Regional Paratransit Consortium, a non-profit organization founded in 1995 to consolidate transportation services previously provided independently by UCP of Greater Birmingham, The Arc of Jefferson County and Positive Maturity.

The service moved its headquarters from the 2121 Building on Abraham Woods Jr Boulevard North to The Tower on Beacon Parkway West in 2018. ClasTran is subsidized by local governments and by federal matching funds applied for through the Metropolitan Planning Organization. The interim executive director is Bacarra Sanderson Mauldin, who succeeded long-time director Fenn Church in late 2018.

Clients using the service reserve a trip at least one day in advance and pay a subsidized fare. Trips for other users outside the BJCTA service area can be scheduled at higher (unsubsidized) rates.

Facing budget shortfalls, ClasTran has cut staff and reduced the number of daily routes available by reservation, trying to preserve those used by dialysis patients and those attending regular job skills programs. Routes to Hueytown, Morris, Mount Olive, Graysville/Adamsville, Warrior and Tarrant were cut in 2009. Fourteen more routes, in Dolomite, South Avondale, Hooper City, Brighton, Hueytown and Bessemer, were cut in 2010.

Though more than 60% of ClasTran trips connect to Birmingham (234,922 trips in 2008), the city has only provided funding for the service in its 2009 budget, after Jefferson County reduced its contribution, threatening the loss of federal grant money. Mayor William Bell rejected a second call for emergency funding in 2010, saying that the city cannot assume every responsibility dropped by the County.

Executive directors

References

  • MacDonald, Ginny (June 3, 2009) "ClasTran plans to cut 21 routes by June 15." The Birmingham News
  • MacDonald, Ginny (June 11, 2009) "128 clients lose ClasTran service in Birmingham." The Birmingham News
  • Wright, Barnett (November 13, 2010) "ClasTran proposes cuts to 14 routes in Birmingham, Jefferson County." The Birmingham News
  • Bryant, Joseph D. (December 10, 2010) "Bell rejects funds for ClasTran; cuts ahead." The Birmingham News
  • Rebman, Stephanie (October 17, 2018) "National public transportation leader tapped to lead Birmingham's ClasTran." Birmingham Business Journal
  • Johnson, Roy S. (September 29, 2019) "ClasTran executive resigns." The Birmingham News