August 16, 2005--Posted at 10:15 PM CST
JONESBORO--In eight months, public transportation will be a reality in Jonesboro. Since the program's approval in July, the look of the J.E.T.S. buses has been a mystery until today.
They are big, and wide and they are coming. What do they look like? This afternoon, the face of the buses, that will soon be crawling the streets of Jonesboro, was revealed. The J.E.T.S. buses will not only look sleek and modern, but will be pleasure to the pocket book.
With the arrival of public transportation to Jonesboro just months away, Mayor Doug Formon showed Tuesday afternoon just what the behemoth, asphalt crawlers will look like. Beginning April 3rd of 2006, the J.E.T.S. program will be initiated providing public transportation to Jonesboro's citizens.
Copeland said, "We tried to come up with a catchy name, and we also tried to come up with something that would be a descriptor. We call it the Jonesboro Economical Transportation System, and we are trying to be economical in terms of the budgets that we produce as well as the fares that we are charging. At the same time we wanted to convey to folks the amenities of the luxury of a jet passenger."
With the price of fuel continuing to ascend, Copeland says his transportation system has planned for the increased cost.
Copeland said, "We did build some cushion into the budget for the projection of the gas cost. We have looked for very fuel efficient vehicles."
But could higher gas prices for consumers be good for public transit??
"I think that if the gas prices continue to increase like they have over the last couple of weeks, I think that we will have a lot of passengers riding the buses," Copeland said.
This evening, the Jonesboro City Council approved two key components for the JETS program. The council unanimously approved the resolution accepting a bid of nearly $100,000 for the transit shelters that will be installed at every bus stop. They also agreed to pay $130,000 for automated transit fare boxes, which will also be installed at every stop.
The expenditures came out of a federal grant the city received for the transit system months ago.