Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District

Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District

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Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District

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The Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District is a mass transit system that is part of the Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Area in which property taxes are levied to support a local transit system operating buses and the Illinois Terminal intermodal facility in downtown Champaign. Known locally as "MTD," the term also applies to the Board of Trustees or to the administration and operations supported both by these taxes as well as other revenues, such as bus fares. At the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, which lies within the District, all 38,000 students pay a $46 transportation fee every semester in exchange for unlimited use of the bus services. The District currently levies about 25 cents of property taxes per $100 of assessed valuation. The seven members of the Board of Trustees are appointed by the Champaign County Board. Although Willard Airport lies outside the boundaries of the district, MTD offers District residents bus service to and from the airport on routes funded by the University. Buses are produced by the Canadian company New Flyer, Eldorado, and Gillig. MTD introduced hybrid buses to its fleet in Fall 2009.

Public transit before the MTD

In 1854 the first rail lines in the region were laid 2 miles west of Urbana by the Illinois Central Railroad. The city of Urbana initially wanted nothing to do with the new railroad economy, so a new city, originally named West Urbana, was created to help serve the needs of the railroad. In 1860 West Urbana...
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