Final days for Arlington's The MAX bus service

A transit service that served hundreds of people in Arlington is shutting down.

Low ridership led to the elimination of Metro Arlington Express, also known as The MAX. City officials say a new transportation option will replace The MAX and serve more people.

But for those who depend on it, The MAX is a bus service worth saving.

"This is basically my only ride back and forth to the TRE which connects me to Dallas and Fort Worth,” said The MAX rider Demarus Ward.

The max started in 2013 and the number of riders have always been few. The daily ridership was in the low to mid 200s. It's been a partnership between Arlington, DART and the Fort Worth Transportation Authority.

Dart is holding a public hearing Friday on the elimination of The MAX, but the service is already dead because Arlington cut its funding. The max basically had only 2 stops: downtown Arlington at UTA and the Centreport Station. The MAX was attractive to many UTA students, but Arlington has moved on.

Dec. 11 it launched a new on-demand ride share service called Via. It's not Uber or Lyft but it's similar and it's already in use in cities like New York.

Unlike The MAX, a via van will come to you and may pick up a few others along the way who are headed to the same destination.

But Ward thinks The MAX could have worked.

“I really don't think they advertised it as much as they could have, it only had two stops basically if you weren't coming here or to Centre Port you were out of luck. I don't think they gave it a fair chance,” Ward said.

Arlington says the initial Via pilot program will cover the general area covered by the max. As the program grows, so will the coverage area.

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