PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — TriMet has some major service changes coming this year, as well as a possible fare increase for next year.

But riders have the opportunity to share their thoughts before final decisions are made.

As TriMet restores its workforce, they plan to increase the range and frequency of its bus service to reach tens of thousands more people. A number of their proposals for increasing service would start as soon as September.

The fare increase, if approved, would be the first in more than a decade. While there would be no fare increase for monthly and annual passes, the fare increase would range between 15 and 60 cents per single ride.

“Those are some pretty big initiatives that we want people to know about and that if people have questions about them, we want to hear from them now,” said Tia York, a spokesperson for TriMet. “In order to remain financially solvent for years to come, we are looking at this increase as one possible solution.”

As the cost of living continues to rise, economists are concerned about the disproportionate impacts a fare increase may have.

“The fact that public transportation fare increases are impacting the lowest income folks also means that this is also hurting those people that have been driven to the further reaches of our city by increases in housing prices,” said economist Jenny Liu, who is a professor at Portland State University.

TriMet is hosting a dozen other open house events in person and virtually between now and Feb. 4. They have multiple meetings scheduled this week:

  • Wednesday, Jan. 18, 8 – 9 a.m. Via Zoom
  • Wednesday, Jan. 18, 5 – 7 p.m. St. Philip Neri, 2408 SE 16th Ave., Portland
  • Thursday, Jan. 19, Noon – 4 p.m. Rosewood Initiative, 14127 SE Stark St., Portland
  • Saturday, Jan. 21, 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Via Zoom

TriMet is taking comments through the end of February — the board will vote in May.