On Monday, start Jumping Around Carson | NevadaAppeal.com

On Monday, start Jumping Around Carson

Nevada Appeal editorial board

Carson City residents will have a real opportunity beginning Monday to make public transit work in the capital city.

A new fixed-route bus service, called JAC (for Jump Around Carson), will launch – and it’s free for a month.

Even after October, the costs will be reasonable: $1 one-way for most people, 50 cents for seniors and the disabled. Children 5 and under ride free with an adult.

JAC’s launch couldn’t come at a more opportune time, with the cost of gas at all-time highs and concerns growing about the viability of future oil supplies. If people didn’t have an incentive before, they certainly do now.

Many people, though, already have plenty of incentive. They simply don’t have a good way to get around Carson City, or to connect with the Pride buses running between cities.

Carson, despite progress on both fronts, still is not particularly bicycle- or pedestrian-friendly. Much can be done in both regards.

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MV Transportation will be operating JAC on a contract for $600,000 a year, and there’s seldom hope that public-transit will break even. The optimistic estimate of 400,000 riders a year will prove that.

Yet, for a little perspective on the value of public transportation, consider the $120 million cost of just the first half of the Carson bypass. That money would pay for a city bus service for 200 years.

People need an alternative – to get around, to save gas money and to reduce traffic congestion.

Starting Monday, get to know JAC.