BEND, OR -- Bend's public transit system doesn't have a steady source of funding, but that could all soon change. Central Oregon Intergovernmental Council Executive Director Andrew Spreadborough will announce Friday how the organization plans to bolster financial stability for Cascades East Transit.
"What the challenge is, we're by far the largest transit system in Oregon without a dedicated funding source, without a tax base or some method of support," Spreadborough tells KBND News. "So, our resources for support are pretty limited."
An expansion of Bend's fixed-route bus system could give the new OSU-Cascades west side campus more transportation options. Spreadborough says, "I think we've long recognized that west side development is going to occur, including the OSU-Cascades campus. And, I do think transit could be a part of the solution, along with bikeable communities, walkable communities and other developments that are planned. We've worked very hard with OSU-Cascades and the city of Bend."
Spreadborough plans to continue that collaborative effort. A series of new partnerships between COIC and a number of large local employers could provide more stable funding for the CET bus system. Those partners include, the city of Bend, OSU-Cascades, COCC, St. Charles Health System and the Bend Chamber of Commerce.