Allegheny County to launch pilot program for low-income public transit users

Fares on Pittsburgh Regional Transit, the region’s largest public transit provider, are $2.75 per ride, among the highest rates in the country. Transfers were recently made free, as part of an effort to help increase accessibility.

Pittsburgh Regional Transit CEO Katharine Kelleman said that PRT will be participating in the 12-month pilot program. The pilot is expected to launch a date to accept applications in November.

Discounted and free fares for low-income riders has been a longtime goal of local advocacy groups. The Fair Fares for a Full Recovery Coalition — composed of advocacy groups Just Harvest, Pittsburgh Food Policy Council, Pittsburghers for Public Transit, and UrbanKind — commended the county and Fitzgerald for launching the pilot program.

According to the coalition, PRT fares fall heaviest on low-income households, who are simultaneously the most reliant on public transit and the highest likelihood of paying the full cash fare, which doesn’t grant a free transfer.