The Iowa Department of Transportation has received a $1.51 million Veterans Transportation and Community Living Initiative grant from the Federal Transit Administration.
The purpose of the federal initiative is to strengthen transportation choices to serve those who have served their country. Enhancing veterans’ and military families’ awareness of, and access to, transportation choices in their communities is integral to successfully reintegrating these men and women and their families.
The Iowa DOT’s application was a collaborative effort involving multiple project partners. The project will improve access to information about veteran transportation options, aging resources, disability services, and human and social services for all Iowans.
The grant will be used to survey veterans’ transportation options available in Iowa, resulting in the creation of a database that covers all 99 counties. The objective is to combining the veterans’ transportation database with three existing information and referral databases from the Iowa 211 system and the aging and persons with disabilities communities to create a single, statewide comprehensive database.
The database will serve as a one-call/one-click resource. In addition, it will allow veterans, persons with disabilities, persons older than 60, and others to access information about transportation and other human service resources. A smartphone application will allow information to be accessed quickly and conveniently.
Another aspect of the project involves purchase of ridesharing software, which will be used to establish a statewide rideshare system. The system will match up persons interested in sharing a ride to a common location. Ridesharing allows veterans and others to economically and conveniently travel to their jobs, medical appointments or other destinations.
The project will be invaluable in enhancing the mobility of all Iowans, including veterans, older Iowans and persons with disabilities.
For more information on public transit, visit the Iowa DOT’s website at www.iowadot.gov/transit.