Modernizing DRT Specialized Transit

Posted on Wednesday September 14, 2022

One of Durham Region Transit’s (DRT) main objectives is to ensure equitable public transit for all residents in Durham regardless of where they live, work, go to school, or otherwise travel in the Region. We are also committed to modernizing services to improve access and enhance the frequency and capacity of all services that meet the travel needs of residents. As part of these commitments, I wanted to provide you with an update on how we are modernizing Specialized Transit.

New third-party vendor
DRT recently consolidated what was previously five separate contracts with local taxi providers into a single contract. Voyago started delivering services in June 2022. Today, all Specialized Transit trips are delivered in a DRT branded vehicle, with a driver in a DRT uniform. Whether the driver of your vehicle is an employee of DRT or Voyago, the same care is taken to ensure you get where you need to go.

On Demand service
DRT is in the process of merging Specialized and On Demand into a single service called On Demand. As a registered Specialized Transit customer, you will gain access to innovative scheduling and information systems, including booking trips by phone, or through an app on your mobile device, with real-time bookings, and real-time vehicle locations and notifications from the app.

More capacity and reduced wait times
In the coming weeks, Specialized and On Demand customers will travel in the same vehicle. For example, a vehicle may pick up a customer registered with Specialized Transit, then pick up an On Demand customer travelling in the same direction. This frees up vehicles to assist more specialized customers and reduces wait times.

With these updates, it is important to note:

  • There are no changes to the Specialized Transit eligibility process and customers registered with Specialized Transit will continue to receive door-to-door services consistent with their eligibility.
  • Service levels remain the same and will improve as the service develops.
  • Any savings through modernization will be reinvested to expand DRT services.
  • As we travel this journey together, enhancing the customer experience in using public transit, we continue to build a mutually respectful relationship between customers and staff.

Should you have any questions, please reach out to DRT Customer Service staff who can provide you with timely, relevant information as we work to enhance our Demand Response service for Specialized Transit customers.

DRT is committed to increased community engagement throughout the fall and will be sharing opportunities for you to connect with staff and provide feedback. To get an alert on community engagement opportunities sent to your email, subscribe to “News & Updates” on our website at https://subscription.durhamregiontransit.com/Subscribe