MVTA Grows with Addition of BlueXpress (Prior Lake and Shakopee) Service

MVTA Board members, from left, are:

  • Michael Luce (Shakopee)
  • Clint Hooppaw (MVTA Chair, Apple Valley)
  • Bill Coughlin (Burnsville)
  • Liz Workman (Dakota County)
  • Jane Victorey (Savage)
  • Beverley Miller (MVTA Executive Director)
  • Mike McGuire (Prior Lake)
  • Bill Droste (Rosemount Mayor)
  • Bob Crawford (Elko New Market)
  • Gary Hansen (Eagan)
  • Jon Ulrich (Scott County)

"This is a momentous occasion," said MVTA Chair Clint Hooppaw (who also serves as an Apple Valley Councilmember). "We are meeting one of our strategic objectives, which is The Board identifies and pursues opportunities for expansion through a position of leadership and advocacy. We strongly believe that we can be more effective together than as individual organizations."

Several guiding principles led the merger process, including: 1) Maintain (at a minimum) BlueXpress existing level of service; 2) Maintain and upgrade existing capital assets; 3) Review overall service plan (express, local, and unmet needs) and consider service adjustments; and 4) Establish priorities, based on updated service plan.

"We believe this merger is good for our riders and for the City of Prior Lake," said Mike McGuire, Prior Lake Councilmember and new member of the MVTA Board. "By combining with MVTA and creating a larger system, the potential for future transit services is far greater than what the BlueXpress could provide. We are excited to see where this takes us."

Shakopee Councilor Michael Luce stated, "Shakopee is pleased to become a member of the Minnesota Valley Transit Authority.

From left, Michael Luce (Shakopee), Michael Leek (Shakopee Alternate), Casey McCabe (Prior Lake Alternate), Mike McGuire (Prior Lake).
of a larger, stronger system, the merger will allow us to be able to offer our riders more options to meet their transit needs. It will also allow for greater flexibility and overall efficiency."

BlueXpress riders should continue to expect the same quality of service throughout the transition as the MVTA is also rider and customer service-focused. The look of the buses might change, but ultimately there should be more opportunities for the residents of Prior Lake and Shakopee to take advantage of transit. A study of the needs in northern Scott County is slated to be conducted in 2015-2016.

Currently, the MVTA is integrating BlueXpress service into its system; buses are being modified to include the MVTA’s technology (including free Wi-Fi) and to reflect the MVTA Brand; agreements between Prior Lake or Shakopee and the Metropolitan Council are set to be re-assigned to the MVTA; and a multitude of other details are being completed.

The MVTA is the public transportation provider for the businesses and residents of Apple Valley, Burnsville, Eagan, Prior Lake, Rosemount, Savage and Shakopee. Dakota and Scott Counties are also parties to the MVTA; the MVTA also provides service to the Lakeville Cedar Park & Ride.

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