Transportation Resources from Outlook Nebraska

8 Apr

This last weekend, April 6 & 7, 2019, we volunteered to staff the transportation table for Outlook Nebraska’s Vision Resources Fair at the Omaha Health and Wellness Expo.

Outlook has compiled a list of transportation resources for people who are visually impaired, however this list is useful for anyone who has mobility limitations. Some of the resources are geographically specific and fill in the gaps where MOBY does not serve. Others are geared toward older individuals who are no longer able to drive themselves.

Outlook Nebraska was kind enough to share their list with us. If you know if additional resources not listed here, feel free to let us know in the comments or e-mail us at info@modeshiftomaha.org

General Transportation

Camelot Transportation: Staff is trained to provide transportation for individuals with mental or physical disabilities along with youth and elderly. Provides transportation services 24/7. Call 888-452-3194 or visit: http://www.camelottransportation.net/forms-1.html Fares: Metro (0-5 miles) $22.00; Triumph (wheelchair)- $30.00 for 0-5 miles, $30.00+$2.50/mile for 6+miles ; Additional Passenger- $10.00/ person; 2nd driver/escort/wait time- $22.00/hr

City of Bellevue Specialized Transportation Service Unit (402)-293-3138; https://www.bellevue.net/departments/human-services/programs#specialized-transportation  Must be resident of Bellevue. Provides transportation to those 60 or older or have a medical disability. Need 48hr notice for reservation, space is limited. Open Monday- Friday, 8am-4pm, trips to Omaha run at 8am, 10am, & 12pm. Cost is $2.00 each way withinBellevue and $4.00 each way for trips into Omaha. The van operates within the following boundaries: As far west as 84th St. As far north to Dodge St. approximately Platteview Road south. Please call to complete a registration prior to starting. Escorts ride free if the name is provided when you make a reservation. Wheelchair lifts available on vans. There is a 60 minute window for pickup and the first pickup is at 7am and last pickup is at 3pm.

Council Bluffs- Special Transport Service 712-328-4634 http://www.councilbluffs-ia.gov/361/Special-Transit-Service-STS.  Provides curb-to-curb demand response service for individuals unable to use MAT’s fixed route service because of disability. Available to all eligible residents within Council Bluffs’ city limits. To register for service must fill out application (requires certification from physician to verify disability). Provides transportation within city limits and certain designated points within Omaha. Monday- Friday 6:00am- 6:00pm and Saturday 7:00am- 6:00pm. Fare: One way ticket- $2.50 Booklets of 10 tickets: $25.00 (available at Treasurer’s Office in City Hall or my mail for $25.50- mail money to Public Works Department, 209 Pearl St., Council Bluffs, Iowa) .  For reservations call: 1-844-241-0946 (open Monday- Saturday 8am-5pm). Can make reservation 14 days in advance but no less than the day before desired pickup time. Be prepared to accept pickup time up to an hour before or after preferred time.

ENOA Rural Transportation: This service is available to the elderly, persons with disabilities, and the public living in rural areas of Cass, Sarpy, Douglas, Dodge, and Washington County. Minimum 48 hours’ notice is required but does not guarantee a ride. Available Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm. Cost varies, but is generally 0-10 miles=$2 each way; 11-20 miles=$5 each way; 21-40 miles=$6 each way. For more information visit: https://enoa.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/RTP-Bro-1.pdf

Fremont’s City Cab Service (402)721-2121  Monday-Thursday; 7am-7pm, Friday-Saturday 7am-1:00am, Sunday: closed. $2.25/mile; $3.50 minimum when you get into the car

Go Go Grandparent  This service allows people who have only a flip phone to order a ride in a private car (similar to Uber or Lyft).  Call 855-464-6872, Signing up is free. Can sign up online at https://gogograndparent.com/ Ride Fare: $2.55 base fare + $0.96 per mile + $0.20 per minute (with a minimum fare of $3.50) and GoGoGrandparent Concierge Fee: $0.19 per minute

IntelliRide (medicaid only) Call 402-401-6999, Authorizes and arranges Non-Emergency transportation for individuals receiving services through Department of Health and Human Services. Requests have to be made within at least 3 business days in advance unless it’s urgent care.


La Vista/Ralston Special Services Van (402)657-3550

The Special Services Unit operates Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. This service is available for all senior residents (ages 60 and older) and all handicapped residents of La Vista and Ralston. The bus will take you to a variety of destinations including senior centers, shopping, appointments, etc. (accommodation depends on prior commitments).

Fares are $1 in Zone 1 (within La Vista and Ralston and designated locations); $3 for Zone 2 (outside La Vista and Ralston city limits); $10 for Zone 3 (outside city limits). Multiple stops are an additional $1 (prices subject to change). Bus punch cards are available for $30 (each punch is worth $1). Check or cash only.  All passengers must fill out an application form prior to riding on bus (or may be filled out on the first bus trip). Reservations must be requested 2 business days prior to the rider’s requested appointment date. Passengers should be ready 10 minutes prior to scheduled pick-up time. The Cities of La Vista and Ralston Special Services Bus is a curb-to-curb service. All passengers who are not able to get to the curb of their residence without help, will be required to have a person ride along to and from their destination. There is no charge for this additional person.

Lyft  Smartphone App that lets you call a ride to your exact location and also get dropped off at a location of your choice. Download the app or sign up at https://www.lyft.com/. Do not have to schedule ride any certain time in advance; simply open app and search for nearby drivers. Depending on how busy the day is, may get a ride in 2-20 minutes. Prices vary depending on distance traveled and surge pricing. Payment works by hooking the app to a credit card which automatically pays the driver after the trip with an optional tip. $5.00 cancellation fee.

Metro- Half Fare Pass  Regular Ometro buses Elderly/ Disabled/ Medicare- half fares Cash Fares:$0.60, 10 Ride Cards:$6.00; 30 Consecutive Days Unlimited Rides: $27.00 Must have a Metro Photo ID Card Eligibility for half fare. Call 341-0800 for more information.  Fill out application http://www.ometro.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Edit-Metro_Half_Fare_App_3-30-16.pdf  Network Farthest West: 180th and Dodge; Farthest North 72nd & Sorenson Pkwy/ 30th and Martine Ave.

Farthest East around Mall of the Bluffs; Farthest South: Around Bellevue University

MOBY: MOBY provides transportation to individuals who live within ¾ mile of a fixed metropolitan bus line and have a disability or temporary health issue that prevents them from using the fixed bus line. MOBY is a door to door service that operates 7 days a week. The cost of riding is $2.50 per trip. For guidelines and application call 402-341-0800 or visit: http://www.ometro.com/index.php/rider-guide/mobyada/

Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/hcs_services_transportation.aspx (402) 471-3121 Provides transportation services to eligible people who are unable to secure transportation from relatives, friends, or other organizations at no cost. Contact a worker that can answer your questions about Transportation Service or how to apply for the service: http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/hcs_contact.aspx Transportation for things like doctor’s appointments, grocery store, legal aid, and adult day services but not for ocial, religious, or recreational events.

Papillion Special Services Van (402)-680-3970 Primarily for the use of elderly and those with disabilities who live inside Papillon’s city limits and Papillion SID”s city limits. Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 7:45am-2:00pm; Tuesday and Thursday: 8:00am-3:00pm; Need 24-hour notice and space is limited. Fare: $1.00 one way within city limits; $2.00 one way outside city limits.

RSVP CAR-GO (Fremont and Blair) 402-721-7780 RSVP’s Car-Go Project offers free transportation for men and women age 55 and older through volunteers age 55 and older who use their own vehicles. Free rides can be given to medical appointments, pharmacies, grocery stores, beauty parlors, barbershops, banks and other personal business locations. Operates from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday in Fremont and Blair. 24 hours notice rides reservation is required.

Share A Fare: (402)-827-9814https://shareafare.org/application    

https://shareafare.org/order  Share A Fare is a cab subsidy program for residents of the Greater Omaha area who are legally blind or whose vision precludes them from driving. Share A Fare allows participants to purchase cab coupon books at a reduced rate. The coupons can be used to pay all or part of an individual’s cab fare and do not have an expiration date. To utilize the service, a certifying agent must complete the online application or PDF application. Certifying agents can be a healthcare provider, rehabilitation counselor, or vision care provider. Can get half off up to $75 a month on uber or lyft.

Seniors Helping Seniors Transportation for seniors requiring transportation throughout Omaha and Sarpy County. 402-331-3073 to schedule an appointment. $23 per hour for transportation.  Can provide transportation after surgery on a case-by-case basis, can’t be high fall risk. Seniors helping Seniors will go into a home to assist people into the vehicle. www.seniorcaregreateromaha.com

Southwest Iowa Transit Agency 1-800-842-8065  Transportation for all residents in Cass, Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie, and Shelby counties. Operate 24/7 (pending vehicle and driver availability). Live dispatch available Monday- Friday (excluding holidays) 6:00am-5:00pm. Wheelchair Accessible.

Uber  Smartphone App that allows you to call transportation to your exact location and be dropped off at a location of your choice. Can download the app or sign up at https://get.uber.com/ Do not have to schedule ride any certain time in advance; simply open app and search for nearby drivers. Depending on how busy the day is, may get a ride in 2-20 minutes. Prices vary depending on distance traveled and surge pricing. Payment works by hooking the app to a credit card which automatically pays the driver after the trip with an optional tip. $5.00 cancellation fee.  With VoiceOver iOS compatibility, the Uber app provides convenient accessible transportation for people who are blind or visually impaired.

Wings of love 402-571-1922 Available Monday-Friday 7am-6pm Rate is $12-15 per way No radius. Used for store or medical purposes. Give 24-48 hour notice

zTrip: zTrip, formally Happy Cab, provides cab services in the Omaha Metro Area. Scheduling a trip with zTrip can be done thru their app, by phone, hailed on the street, or booked via their website. For more information call 763-318-2900 or visit: https://www.ztrip.com/omaha/

Medical Transport

Fremont Area Medical Center Free transportation between FAMC and the patient’s residence, for those who cannot provide it for themselves. Scheduled through the department providing service. Bus service area includes towns located in Dodge County, as well as Arlington, Cedar Bluffs and Valley, and is available within the city of Fremont. Monday through Friday, 7am-4pm. Services outside of Fremont are available on Tuesday and Thursday.

Goodwill Medical Transportation (402)-932-1550 Monday-Friday 6:00am-5:00pm. Reservations need to be made 24-48 hours prior to ride. Accepts Medicaid and private pay. Medical appointments only. Fare: $18 each way or  $42 each way if you need wheelchair accessibility (with no physical assistance)

Midwest Medical Transport Company-Midwest Medair Call 402-800-2946. Offers para-transit wheelchair van services in Lincoln, Omaha, and Fremont

Medics At Home 402-345-6666 Transportation via ambulance to a nursing home, hospital, or other location. 24/7 services. Will decide the type of transport you need at the time you schedule the transport

VA Hospital Beneficiary Transportation Call 402-995-4458. Ambulance service for VA hospital. Monday-Friday 8am-5pm. Must be wheelchair bound and have service connected disability rating of 30%. Must meet income guidelines. https://www.va.gov/healthbenefits/vtp/beneficiary_travel.asp  

If you know of other transportation services available to people who can not drive, please email info@outlookne.org so we can share it with our associates and community clients.

March Coffee Chat: The 24th Street Corridor Study

13 Mar

Our Coffee Chat this month is bringing together a number of community members, some new to us and some of whom we have spoken with in the past. So, rather than post our usual Five Questions highlighting our guest, we’ve put together a post introducing the topic.

This Friday, at our March, 2019 Coffee Chat, we will be discussing a project entitled, “North 24th Street Corridor Housing Market & Multimodal Transportation Study” initiated by the city. This study seeks to identify commercial and residential solutions for the North 24th Street Corridor. From the RFP:

Much of the corridor experienced a long period of decline in housing stock, decreasing numbers of households, increasing poverty, and consequent loss of commercial activity. New residential and commercial development in recent decades has been dependent on subsidized investment. While such development has resulted in physical improvements to housing stock and attracted somewhat more moderate income households, it has not provided sufficient disposable and discretionary income in the geographic area necessary to sustain growing economic and commercial vitality.

Project RFP Document

Study Area is a corridor bounded by 20th Street and US-75, from Cuming Street to Ames Avenue

Our Coffee Chat will bring together members of the community with other project stakeholders to discuss how this study can benefit the community and what the impacts will be with regard to active transportation options that allow people along the corridor to live, work and play. One of the exciting intersections this study has with Mode Shift’s current work is the focus on “Missing Middle” housing. We are looking forward to learning more about the proposals that have been submitted and how the selection process is moving along. Join us at the Scooters on 30th and Ames at 8 a.m., grab a coffee and a pastry and get engaged with the changing landscape for transportation planning and implementation.

Pedestrian Safety Concerns at the Aksarben Transit Center

9 Feb

The new Askarben Transit Center is a recent realignment by Metro to get bus routes and transit centers closer to nodes of activity. Previously, this “transit center” was nothing more than two paired stops outside the Bergan Mercy hospital at 75th and Mercy Road. While the hospital is a major employment center, there really isn’t much else around of interest to a transit user who doesn’t work in the area. To the east, along Mercy Road, we have the growing Aksarben neighborhood — a burgeoning development of residential opportunities, commercial offices, entertainment, shopping and dining. The area has high density, diverse activity and is better served by a transit center that brings together five bus lines.

Currently the new transit center is, again, two paired stops across the street from one another on Mercy Road just west of 68th Street. This location, just west of Aksarben Village is withing easy walking distance of the development, but not positioned so that it would be affected by the many markets, events and concerts throughout the year when the community closes Mercy Road for pedestrians and exhibitors.

Mode Shift member, Cindy Tefft sent along the following observations and images.

North side services Metro Routes 11, 13, 15, 18, and 55. South Side services Route 15.

(L-R) The South side of Mercy, 68th Street, North Side of Mercy

Coming from 67th St., walking west toward the transit center, I saw the following conditions in the few minutes I was there. Cars coming down the hill go extremely fast heading east. Buses ares stopped in the furthest right hand lane of traffic, narrowing the road at times to 2 lanes. This will be very interesting in the summer during events. Would be good to see what it looks like during a.m and p.m. rush hours.

(L-R) Pedestrian crossing mid-block; Truck traffic commingled with buses; Buses, cars and pedestrians

In order to get to the South Transit Center you have to cross 4 lanes of traffic. One transit user says it isn’t too difficult but you have to time it just right. Since HDR opened their new headquarters, traffic has increased. The Keystone trail going under the Mercy Rd Bridge is closed, trail users have to cross Mercy Rd with no crossing signal or crosswalk. There are curb cutouts, 2 on each side of Mercy Rd. One at the corner of 68th south side and one on the north-side mid-block, the other where the trail crosses and is not at a corner. If you are walking east on the south side of Mercy Rd, you must cross the street in order to go over the bridge on a sidewalk to prevent walking in the street with the flow of traffic.

My take away is that this is an extremely dangerous situation for transit users, pedestrians, bicyclists and even motor vehicles.

Pictures: 11:50 a.m. Tues 2/5/2019 – Cindy Teftt

Current Conditions, Suggested Improvements

While Metro made an effort to avoid having pedestrians cross a busy street (all but one route connect at the north-side bus shelter) there are still users who will need to cross Mercy Rd. to make a connection to the east-bound 15, or catch one of the routes that begin heading west on Mercy. This creates a hazardous environment for people walking.

Current Conditions at 68th and Mercy
Click for Larger Image

As we move west on Mercy across Aksarben Drive, Mercy expands from three lanes to four. This creates a particularly dangerous situation for pedestrians, especially without any dedicated, on street walking infrastructure. In a four lane pedestrian crossing, the behavior of a person driving in one lane does not necessarily influence the drivers in the adjacent lanes.

For the safest environment, the roadway around the transit center would be narrowed to three lanes with one vehicle lane in each direction and a center lane that would act as a refuge for pedestrians crossing traffic in stages. The refuge lane (because there are no potential left turns in this stretch of roadway) could also have bollards warning drivers of pedestrian activity. The north/south crossing at the curb cuts should be marked with a cross walk and set-back stop bars. making clear that vehicles should give plenty of room for pedestrians to cross.

In an ideal world, a HAWK signal (High-intensity Activated crossWalK) would be installed to allow pedestrians to activate a right-of-way to cross to their connecting buses, even in high-vehicle-traffic periods.  All of these improvements would be at the discretion of the city’s Planning and Public Works departments.  We hope they will prioritize the comfort and safety of the most vulnerable of transportation system users over the speed and convenience  of people driving cars. 

We know that often infrastructure precedes demand. We trust the city to see the value in providing safe, inviting infrastructure for people walking and using mobility devices will encourage more people to use active transportation as their means of getting around our great city. If you would like to see changes at this intersection, or if you encounter other issues that affect the safety and comfort of people trying to use active transportation, please contact the Mayor’s Hotline (402) 444-5555.