The Arizona department of Transportation (ADOT) is an agency that serves the transportation sector within Arizona. There other agencies that operates at the local level. Both the state and the local agencies work in much the same way as the US Department of Transport at the Federal level. One of the local transit agencies in Arizona is Valley Metro that operates in the urban region of Phoenix city. It is a transportation agency that applies different modes of transport including roads, airlines, and rail. In order to achieve its objective of ensuring customer satisfaction by providing an effective and safe transportation system, the agency focuses on the measures that can help in maximum utilization of the scarce resources that are available.
Valley Metro is one of the local transit agencies in the state of Arizona, U.S.A. that improves the quality of life for the public through ensuring quality transportation system. It works with the agency at the state level to develop the complex highway systems throughout the country (Arizona Department of Transportation, 2011). It is concerned with other transport systems in the region and is responsible for the maintenance and renovation of the region’s aviation system.. The agency works closely with other agencies at local and federal level that develop and enforce federal laws that govern transpiration system in the US. It has a board that comprises different agencies such as Avondale, Maricopa County, Tempe, Glendale, and Phoenix among many others (Valley Metro RPTA, 2011, patra.1). These agencies work together to ensure that an excellent transportation system is developed that serves the needs of the public.
The Valley Metro is out to ensure that a transportation system is developed in the region that is excellent, sensitive to environmental impacts, and promotes economic growth in the region. This is achieved through collaboration with the other agencies to provide transit services that are not costly to the public and the agency that maintains them (Valley Metro RPTA, 2011, patra.3).
The agency has set up goals and objectives that are in line with the mission of the organization. Firstly, the agency has purposed to ensure that the available scarce resources are used appropriately to develop a cost-effective transportation system in the region (Valley Metro RPTA, 2011, patra.5). The care taken at the planning process will help the agency in ensuring that essential transportation services are given to customers through initiation and approval of transit projects in the region.
The agency aims at putting together all the transport systems and modes in the region (Valley Metro RPTA, 2011, patra.5). It also aims at fulfilling the needs of its customers and involving both the public and private sectors in the transportation system so as to have a system that cut across different sectors.
The Valley Metro is also concerned with the improvement of quality of life through considering the environmental impacts that the transportation services may have that are harmful to the passengers (Valley Metro RPTA, 2011a, para.1). Consequences like congestion in roads may pose health challenges apart from the delay and higher fuel consumption.
The transit technologies present in the system
The Valley Metro has adopted modern technology that helps in monitoring transportation system through various modes such as bike, light rails, vanpool, and buses among others (Valley Metro RPTA, 2011a, para.7). Buses are common means of transport by the agency. The agency has develop an adopted a plan that helps in integrating all this modes of transportation. The agency documents like title, registration, and driver licenses to the operators of such passenger vehicles. The agency attempts to use modern transport facilities that are efficient and ensures safety of the passengers on-board. It operates in line with the Intermodal Transportation Division at the state level that is concerned with construction and maintenance of major highways in the state of Arizona. The highway system continues to be developed to ease traffic congestion that consumes much time and fuel, leading to high transportation charges. This calls for facilities like subways to be developed in the transportation system. There are also trains that convey passengers in the downtowns within the urban centers and commuter rails that go further into the suburbs of the cities (Scutari, 2009, pp.4-5).
To improve on safety programs, the Valley Metro applies the nationally instituted Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) that monitors various traffic operations. The Intelligent Transportation System ensures that there is minimum or no traffic congestion in the highways. This is achieved through constant monitoring of traffic movements (Quinn, 2011). There are traffic incidences that would call for an immediate action. The ITS can improve the rate of response to such emergency cases, which contributes to significant saving of life and property. The ITS uses modern information and communication technology to enable the agency and its customers to get the right and prompt information. Modern computers and remote sensors are used to study the traffic movements and get the correct information so that the right action can be taken (Quinn, 2011). The system has a management facility that operates statewide. The Traffic operations Center is a facility in the Intelligent Transportation System that keeps track of traffic condition of the highways throughout the state. It also provides information on weather and conditions of roads in different parts of Arizona (Quinn, 2011). This helps in an effective decision-making process.
The riders that use the system on an average day
The ridership in Valley Metro is set to increase especially in new routes that are funded by the local government due to the adoption of modern technology. It is expected that the daily ridership in Gilbert Road in the FY 2010/2011 will be 623 and the figure will increase to 1186 in the FY 2014/2015. Similarly, the ridership of Power Road is expected to be 425 in FY 2010/2011 and 852 in the FY 2014/2015 (Regional Public Transportation Authority, 2009, p.60). Such increment is also witnessed in the ridership of Arizona Avenue Arterial BRT.
The transit capital and operating budget of the agency
The agency has had a decreasing trend in its operating budget. The operating budget was $131 million in 2008, $110 million in 2009, and $94 million in 20010 (Office of the Director, 2009, p.6). This is likely to pose problems, since the road safety programs will not be implemented easily.
Much of financial resources used by the agency are derived from individuals who purchase fuel for private or commercial use. Taxes levied on the fuels purchased as well as the fees charged on passengers using carriers in the system provide funds from the system. The individuals and businesses that own vehicles for commercial use have to obtain certain documents that provide them with the authority to operate in the transportation sector. Documents such as motor vehicle title, registration, and the drive’s licenses are often obtained at a fee that finances the agency. Much of these funds are used to improve the transportation system like the local bus system, the Neighborhood Mini-Bus Service, and light rail among other projects (Valley Metro RPTA, 2011b, para.7). It should be noted that the agency often contracts some private organization to provide the transportation services. To ensure continuous delivery of quality services, the agency allocates much of the funds to pay these private transport organizations and for the acquisition of materials for maintenance of the infrastructure.
In own opinion, is the subsidy worth the value of the services the community receives? Why or why not
The subsidy is indeed proportional to the services that the agency provides to the community. The continuous improvement of the transport system like railroads and highways to meet modern standards has ensured quality transport services to the public. The ITS approach has helped to reduce cases of traffic congestion and the associated losses in terms of accidents, fuel consumption, and delay in transport. Cases of loss of life have been seen to reduce significantly in the recent past (Office of the Director, 2009, p.6). The failures that were observed at the initial stages of using the modern technologies have also been overcome in the recent years.
Arizona Department of Transportation. (2011). About ADOT. Web.
Office of the Director. (2009). Strategic Plan- Fiscal Years 2011-2015. Arizona Department of Transportation. Web.
Quinn, B. (2011). Arizona Department of Transportation Infoblox. Web.
Regional Public Transportation Authority. Short Range transit program FY 2009/2010- 2014/2015. (Attached material)
Scutari, S. High Speed Rails and P3s. NCPPP 2009 Annual Meeting. Web.
Valley Metro RPTA. (2011a). Overview. Web.
Valley Metro RPTA. (2011b). History and Local Funding. Web.