Amplify: RAPID Northwest Achieves Quarter Million Rider Milestone

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Milestone number hit in seven-month period ahead of initial projections

RAPID NW reached its quarter million rider milestone (July 10, 2024) since service began on December 4, 2023.

Officials with EMBARK commemorated the quarter million rider milestone of RAPID – the region’s first bus rapid transit service at RAPID’s park-and-ride located at the northeast corner of  NW Expressway and Meridian Ave.

“We expected RAPID NW to change the way residents along the line use public transit, and our hopes have been realized,” Mayor David Holt said. “To surpass one quarter million riders in just seven months is an incredible accomplishment and validates the investment. It certainly encourages us as we look to add lines to the Northeast and South through MAPS4.”

Operated by EMBARK, the RAPID line has 32 platform stops, stretches 9.5 miles each way and integrates into the more extensive EMBARK transit network. The route connects downtown OKC to Classen Boulevard and Northwest Expressway to Meridian.

The NW line uses a fleet of nine 40-foot Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) vehicles and operates 365 days a year with service at each platform stop every 12-15 minutes during peak service. RAPID vehicles are equipped with luxury seating and amenities that provide an elevated rider experience – all while using advanced technology and service models.

RAPID NW travels through one of the region’s most job-dense and high-traffic corridors. With nearly 40,000 residents and 91,000 jobs along the RAPID Northwest line, over 20% of the region’s employment base is estimated to be within a half-mile of RAPID’s transit service.

“We are thrilled to announce that we have reached an incredible milestone of a quarter of a million riders in just seven short months. This achievement is a testament to our community’s trust and reliance on our services,” EMBARK Director of Parking and Transportation / City of Oklahoma City Assistant City Manager Jason Ferbrache said. “We will continue to innovate and enhance our services to meet the growing needs of our city. Thank you to our dedicated team and our wonderful customers for making this possible.”

For Oklahoma City residents wanting to get out and explore the service, passes can be purchased using the token transit app, any ticket vending machine available on each platform stop or directly from the EMBARK transit center.  

“The RAPID NW service was envisioned to provide efficient, reliable and accessible transit solutions. As we look to the future, we remain steadfast to enhance connectivity and contribute to the sustainable growth of transportation for Central Oklahoma,” said Barney Semtner, COTPA Board of Trustees Chairperson. “This milestone is not only a reflection of our impressive ridership numbers but also to our commitment to excellence in public transportation.”

Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) was first identified as a viable public transit option in the 2005 Fixed Guideway Plan, followed by a concept plan in 2016 with a preliminary design for the first line completed in 2020. Oklahoma City-based Rudy Construction was awarded the construction contract and work began on the RAPID NW in June 2022.

The construction of the RAPID $28.9 million NW Line was funded in part by the City of Oklahoma City, Central Oklahoma Transportation & Parking Authority and the U.S. Department of Transportation. Two additional lines are in design as part of the voter-approved MAPS 4 Transit Project.

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Hi there! I am Sherri Hultner and I am the founder of all things EdmondActive! The website and social networks of over 40,000 local residents are where you can find me interacting daily with our followers

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