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A Madison County Transit bus at the MCT Alton Station.
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GRANITE CITY — Madison County Transit (MCT) is simplifying the way its passengers pay fares, starting with the creation of several new fare products to be rolled out in the next few months.
At its regular meeting last week, the MCT Board of Trustees approved the implementation of three new passes, the creation of a new Senior Free Ride ID, the redefining of its fixed-route fare zones and the rerouting of an MCT Express trip to Emerson Park. The first round of fare adjustments will take effect Sunday, Aug. 16, with MCT’s first fare increase since 2009 on cash fares and monthly passes. To provide additional options for passengers, simplify the fare structure and speed the boarding process, MCT also will implement the following new fare products in subsequent months:
- MCT 2-Hour Zone Pass ($2): Valid for unlimited multi-directional trips within a single fare zone on MCT fixed-routes. Valid for two hours from purchase on date of issue. Not valid on MCT Express trips or on Metro. Effective Nov. 1.
- MCT 2-Hour Regional Pass ($3): Valid for unlimited multi-directional trips on all MCT fixed- route buses, all MetroBus routes and all MetroLink trains. Valid for two hours from purchase on date of issue. Effective Nov. 1.
- MCT Express Round Trip Pass ($5): Valid only on MCT Express routes (including Rams and Muny Express) for round-trip service within one calendar day (date of issue) for multi-directional travel. Not valid on Metro. Effective Jan. 10.
- MCT Senior Free Ride ID (free): Valid for unlimited free trips on all MCT fixed-routes for Madison County residents age 75 and older. Must receive MCT-issued photo ID. Effective Nov. 1.
As a result of the new MCT 2-Hour Zone Pass and MCT 2-Hour Regional Pass, there is no longer a need to issue the complicated series of transfers and upgrades, so MCT will stop doing so on Nov. 1. To give passengers time to become acquainted with these new passes, MCT will issue them for free with the cash fare from Nov. 1 until Jan. 10.
The MCT Board also approved the creation of five redefined fixed-route fare zones. The zones determine the cost of a cash fare. If passengers stay within their zone, they pay the “Shuttle” fare, if they cross into a second zone, their cash fare increases.
- Zone A: Alton, Godfrey, Wood River, Roxana, South Roxana, Hartford, Bethalto
- Zone B: Edwardsville, Glen Carbon, SIUE
- Zone C: Granite City, Madison, Venice, Pontoon Beach
- Zone D: Collinsville, Maryville, Troy
- Zone E: Highland, St. Jacob
The fare boundary for Zone C will be extended to New Poag Road (currently Interstate 270), which will convert the No. 6 Roxana – South Roxana Shuttle to a Cross County route, the No. 6 Roxana – Pontoon Beach. As a result, effective Jan. 10, the new fare to ride from Roxana or Wood River to the Gateway Commerce Center will be $2 each direction. New fare boundaries also will be established on the No. 1 Riverbend, No. 4 Madison – Edwardsville and No. 5 Tri-City Regional.
Also effective Jan. 10, the MCT Board approved the rerouting of one remaining morning Express trip to St. Louis and one evening Express trip back on the No. 18 Collinsville Regional. Instead of traveling to and from St. Louis, the trip will rerouted to the Emerson Park MetroLink Station.