History


 
History - METRO Transit

In 1992, COTPA adopted the brand name METRO Transit.

In 1996, COTPA’s operations and maintenance facility was relocated to 2000 S May in order to make way for the Bricktown Ballpark. Then in the late 90s the transit center was moved to make the construction of the Ford Center possible. The transit center’s temporary site was across from the Oklahoma County Jail at Shartel and Couch.

The City’s first Metropolitan Area Projects (MAPS) project made it possible to purchase The Oklahoma Spirit Trolleys in 1999. The trolleys were predominately created to provide transportation links to the expanding cultural and convention facilities in the downtown area.

In 2003 METRO Transit extended operation hours, improved bus frequencies, and began construction on a new Downtown Transit Center at NW 5th & Hudson. Construction of the new facility meant passengers would no longer have to wait for their buses in the elements on a barren lot.

The City of Edmond and the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) saw a need to provide public transportation as the growing community caused traffic congestion to increase. METRO Transit contracted with Edmond to provide “The Eddy” trolley service in March 2003. Soon after, the Broncho Bus was added to provide additional service around UCO. METRO Transit's contract with Edmond and UCO expired in July 2009.

COTPA’s 2005 Fixed Guideway Study identified the need for “Enhanced Bus Service”, bus service more frequent than what we have today. The study also recommended futuristic guideway systems such as a Downtown Streetcar, CRT (Commuter Rail Transit), BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) and HOV (Highway high occupancy vehicle) lanes. All of these transportation solutions would improve connections among greater Oklahoma City's growth centers, help spur economic development, improve mobility and health, expand transportation options and improve air quality.

In 2009 the City renamed the Transit Services Department to the Public Transportation and Parking Department to more clearly identify the department’s responsibilities. This department manages over 50% of downtown parking and owns and manages the Oklahoma River Cruises.


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