FRAMEWORK FOR THE FUTURE
There was significant engagement of the public throughout 2019 as a result of the pillar studies that are part of the Strategic Plan. Three surveys captured over 6,250 responses on ways that RTA can improve its service and customer experience. Approximately 40 public meetings were held across the region that were attended by over 300 people. Public meetings were held at a variety of locations, days of week, and times of day.
Each year RTA conducts a customer satisfaction survey. In 2019, the survey received 465 responses. The survey revealed that approximately 64% of RTA customers were satisfied overall with RTA. Based on customer feedback, the results of the customer satisfaction survey highlighted that a daily goal of RTA needed to be focused on getting the basics done to provide quality service to customers.
Additional public input in 2020 provided more opportunities to learn from RTA customers and the general public.
The study team met with dozens of stakeholders during the initial input phase of the planning process. Input was varied and wide-ranging, but some ideas rose to the top and were mentioned multiple times. A key concern was the image of the agency among the general public and specifically among RTA riders. Stakeholders revealed that a degrading image over time has resulted in a general lack of confidence, a deteriorating customer experience, and declining ridership. Stakeholders observed that issues outside of RTA’s direct control have had a negative impact. Notably, the outward expansion of land development has created a situation in which new jobs and new neighborhoods are increasingly difficult to serve with transit.
Meetings with external stakeholders provided input from representatives of the business community, educational institutions, Cuyahoga County, Clevelanders for Public Transit, Ohio Department of Transportation, community development organizations, City of Cleveland, Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency, Urban Land Institute, development professionals, health representatives, civic institutions, and bicycle advocacy groups.
In a second round of stakeholder engagement, the project team reconvened with leaders inside and outside RTA. This activity highlighted stakeholders’ key topics to be addressed by RTA in the coming decade.
In initial stakeholder meetings, maintenance of existing infrastructure, customer experience, and technological innovation were identified as the top three goals that should be a priority of focus for RTA.
Stakeholders will continue to be engaged to help shape the Strategic Plan and form partnerships to achieve shared goals.
To view the presentation from the meeting, please click here.