The DTA Celebrates Another Milestone in Long History of Transporting People Around Duluth

The DTA has been Duluth's public transit system since 1883

DULUTH, Minn. – With almost two thousand stops, 75 fixed–route buses and some of the highest ridership in the country, the Duluth Transit Authority has served as an example for transportation systems all over the nation.

“In 1883 they had mule–drawn street cars because they needed transportation that was affordable to get people around the community and up the hill,” DTA general manager Phil Pumphrey said.

The earliest version of the DTA had a private owner.

“Transit systems across the united states were failing and falling in disrepair because they were owned by private companies and operated for profit,” Pumphrey said.

It wasn’t until 1969 that the state legislature allowed a board to form over the transit system. That’s when the DTA was reborn.

“We’re known for running in bad weather when people can’t drive or worried about driving. They have an opportunity or the ability to have that option to use the public transit system.”

The DTA grew from trolley and diesel to having a handful of electric buses.

“It provides a number of benefits for people who can’t drive,” Pumphrey said.

And has had other big expansions like the addition of the STRIDE service for people with dissabilites and the construction of the new transportation center in 2016.

“The community has responded well throughout the history of the dta. People need it, they use it and they support it,” Pumphrey said.

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