POCATELLO, Idaho - Pocatello Regional Transit is rolling-out its new image in an effort to increase ridership while helping to unite the community.
PRT director Dave Hunt noticed the department's ability to effectively communicate what it could offer to the community was lacking.
"We want people to ride the bus for all of their different activities and to access the community whether it be: shopping, medical appointments, or sightseeing," Hunt said.
That's when he called upon Idaho State University's College of Business marketing professor John Ney, who turned this project over to his class.
The class was split into 11 teams, each being challenged to create their own, brand-new marketing plan for PRT.
The winning team was able to develop a plan that would make traveling via public transit easier for riders and would help nix the stigma associated with utilizing public transportation.
Hunt said the old stigma was that public transportation was only for "people with disabilities and senior citizens. Frail, special services."
"A lot of folks don't really connect with that and they think, 'well, that's for someone else,'" Hunt added.
Local PRT rider Ray Hughesman said he has a car at home, but chooses to ride the bus to save gas money and wear-and-tear on his vehicle.
"I have a car sitting at home, but it's easier to get around on the bus," Hughesman said. "The thing is, I had driven a truck for years and I am tired of driving. I like sitting on a bus and chauffeur right around town," he laughed.
"If you have a smart phone and you could walk up to a bus sign and it has a number on the sign, you can dial the number and plug-in that location's ID. It will then tell you what routes will serve there, what time they will be there, and even how many minutes in real-time until the next bus arrives," Hunt said.
Hunt added PRT even hopes to open-up new bus routes around town this week as well.
He added the new technology and marketing services will be implemented within these next two-to-three weeks.
For more information, visit the PRT website here: http://www.pocatellotransit.com/