Paratransit rider in wheelchair on vehicle lift helped by operator.

Accessible Transit Services for All

Valley Metro is committed to providing passengers with safe, convenient and comfortable service that is accessible to and usable by all. This includes accessible bus and rail services as well as door-to-door and curb-to-curb ADA Paratransit service for riders who, because of a disability, are unable to use the bus and rail service for some or all of their trips. This ADA Paratransit Ride Guide describes the Valley Metro programs and services that are available to riders with disabilities. Valley Metro and several of our member cities also provide other transportation services which are intended to expand travel options for both seniors and people with disabilities. See the “Other Service Options” section of this Ride Guide for more information about these supplemental transportation programs. This ADA Paratransit Ride Guide describes the Valley Metro programs and services that are available to riders with disabilities. 

Accessible Fixed-Route Bus and Light Rail Services

In keeping with our commitment to accessibility and with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), all Valley Metro buses and light rail vehicles comply with the requirements of the ADA and are designed to be accessible to and usable by people with disabilities. Accessibility features on board our buses and trains include:

  • Lifts or ramps on all fixed-route buses and kneelers which allow the front step of the bus to be lowered
  • Level boarding at all light rail stations
  • Multiple onboard locations to safely secure mobility devices such as wheelchairs and scooters
  • Priority seating which is located near all boarding doors and reserved for seniors and people with disabilities
  • Onboard audio stop announcements on all buses and trains

All Valley Metro Rail stations have been constructed in accordance with the requirements of the ADA and are designed to be accessible to and usable by people with disabilities. Accessibility features include:

  • A level path of travel between all station entrances and platforms
  • High-color contrast, textured strips along the edge of each train platform to indicate the platform edges for people who are blind or visually impaired
  • Fare vending machines, which include Braille, raised print, audible speech and other features, designed to enable people who are blind or visually impaired to independently purchase and validate tickets and passes. At least one machine per station is lowered to enable independent operation by people using wheelchairs and other mobility devices.
  • Audible pedestrian signals (APS) at most signalized intersections serving light rail stations to facilitate safer use of the system by all passengers, including people who are blind or visually impaired

A growing number of Valley Metro bus stops have been improved to offer a higher level of comfort and accessibility for all passengers, including people with disabilities and seniors. Bus stop amenities include:

  • Shelters, seating and concrete pads linking the bus stop to adjacent accessible sidewalks and making it easier and safer for bus operators to deploy the bus’s lift or ramp
  • Five-digit bus stop identification numbers linked to our NextRide system. NextRide provides information (via a computer or cell phone) about the scheduled arrival times at your stop

Valley Metro’s online trip planner and other online tools are designed to be accessible to and usable by people with disabilities, including people who use screen magnification and/ or screen reading software, as well as Braille devices. Valley Metro also provides live customer service support through the Valley Metro Customer Service Center during most system operating hours and voice activated fixed-route trip planning assistance 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Customer Service can be reached at (602) 253-5000.

Valley Metro front-line personnel, including bus and train operators, fare inspectors and Customer Service personnel receive job-related training regarding the ADA and their responsibilities for serving all passengers, including people with disabilities and seniors.

Reduced Fares and Platinum Passes

Valley Metro offers a 50% fare discount for all qualified seniors and people with disabilities. These reduced fares are available on all local Valley Metro buses and trains during all service hours.

Note: individuals must meet all program rules to receive this benefit and must show proof of program eligibility at the time of boarding.

Some Valley Metro member communities also offer the ADA Platinum Pass program for their residents who are eligible for ADA paratransit. The ADA Platinum Pass can be used to pay for unlimited service on all buses and light rail. To find out if your community participates in this free program, call Valley Metro at (602) 253-5000.

Travel Training for Seniors and People with Disabilities

One-on-one instruction on how to ride buses and light rail is provided at no cost to seniors and people with disabilities. A qualified travel trainer works one-on-one with you to instruct you on how to ride buses and light rail. This includes learning to plan a trip, navigating the route to the bus stop or rail station, using fare machines, using the bus lifts and ramps, recognizing where to get off and navigating the route to your destination.

As part of this instruction, the travel trainer will accompany you until you are confident, safe and successful in using the service independently. Travel training provides travel freedom, flexibility and independence. To learn more about this free training opportunity, call (602) 716-2100.

What Is ADA Paratransit Service?

ADA Paratransit is shared-ride, door-to-door or curb-to-curb transportation (provided in vans and/or taxicabs) that is provided to people with disabilities who are unable, or have limited ability because of their disability, to use fixed-route buses or trains. All public transit agencies that provide fixed-route bus and rail service are required by the ADA to provide this service. In the Phoenix metropolitan area, this service was previously known as Dial-a-Ride. Two types of ADA Paratransit service are provided:

Local ADA Paratransit Service

This service is provided by Valley Metro, as well as three community Dial-a-Ride programs, including Phoenix Dial-a-Ride, Glendale Dial-a-Ride and Peoria Dial-a-Ride. Service is provided for trips that begin and end in seven areas as follows:

  • East Valley: Provided by Valley Metro Paratransit
  • Glendale: Provided by Glendale Dial-a-Ride
  • Northwest Valley: Provided by Valley Metro Paratransit
  • Paradise Valley: Provided by Phoenix Dial-a-Ride
  • Peoria: Provided by Peoria Dial-a-Ride
  • Phoenix: Provided by Phoenix Dial-a-Ride
  • Southwest Valley: Provided by Phoenix Dial-a-Ride

The “Where is ADA Paratransit Service Provided?” section of this guide provides more detailed information on the areas within each community where service is provided. For travel within each of these areas, call the appropriate local service provider. Note, several of the Paratransit/Dial-a-Ride providers offer other types of service as well (called non-ADA paratransit service). Information on other types of services provided by each Paratransit/Dial-a-Ride program is provided in the “Other Service Options” section at the end of this guide as well as at valleymetro.org/paratransit.

Please note, Phoenix Dial-a-Ride operates service within and between Phoenix, Paradise Valley and the Southwest Valley as a single local service.

Regional ADA Paratransit Service

Valley Metro provides regional ADA Paratransit service for travel between the local service areas. Examples of regional trips include: a trip between the coordinated Phoenix/Paradise Valley/Southwest Valley area to other areas; a trip between the East Valley and Glendale or Peoria; a trip between the East Valley and the Northwest Valley; a trip between Glendale or Peoria and the Northwest Valley.

Quick Reference Guide

Customer Rights

Customers using public transit are given equal access to programs and services without regard to race, color, national origin or disability. (49 CFR, Part 37 and FTA Circular 4702.1B)

Request a Copy of This Guide

To request a copy of this guide in an alternate format, call (602) 253-5000 or
TTY (602) 251-2039.

How to File a Complaint

Customers wishing to file a complaint, including discrimination due to disability, race, color or national origin, may file a complaint by contacting Customer Service. In accordance with federal standards (28 CFR Part 35 and FTA Circular 4702.1A), all regional transit providers are trained in the correct processing, investigation and documentation of passenger complaints involving discrimination based on disability, race, color or national origin.

All complaints received by Customer Service are documented and assigned to the appropriate transit staff for investigation in accordance with federal standards (28 CFR, Part 35 and FTA Circular 472.1A). After the complaint is processed, a response is sent to the customer filing the complaint and appropriate corrective action is taken.

We would like to hear your questions, comments or concerns regarding the Valley Metro system.

Phone
Customer Service:
(602) 253-5000
TTY: (602) 251-2039

Mailing Address
Attn: Valley Metro, Customer Service
4600 E. Washington St., Suite 101
Phoenix, AZ 85034

Email
csr@valleymetro.org

Online
ADA Complaint Form

Telephone Numbers for Accessible Transit and Dial-a-Ride/Paratransit Service

Service Phone Number
East Valley (Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Tempe) (602) 716-2200
TTY available via relay service
Glendale (623) 930-3515
TTY available via relay service
Northwest Valley (El Mirage, Surprise, Youngtown, Unincorporated County areas, including Sun City and Sun City West) (602) 716-2200
TTY available via relay service
Peoria (623) 773-7435
TTY available via relay service
Phoenix, Paradise Valley, Southwest Valley (Avondale, Goodyear, Litchfield Park, Tolleson) (602) 253-4000
(800) 775-7295 Toll-free
(602) 258-9980 TTY (use only if calling from a TTY machine)
Regional ADA Paratransit (602) 716-2200
TTY available via relay service
Valley Metro Customer Service (602) 253-5000
TTY (602) 251-2039
Valley Metro Mobility Center (602) 716-2100 (ADA Paratransit certification, travel training, RideChoice and reduced fare)

ADA Paratransit Glossary of Terms

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): Civil Rights act passed by the U.S. Congress in 1990, which mandates equal opportunities for people with disabilities in the areas of employment, transportation, communications and public accommodations.

ADA Paratransit Service: A type of public transit service required to be provided according to ADA federal regulations. The service complements available local accessible bus and light rail (fixed-route) transit service in that it must be provided as an alternative form of transit when and where local-fixed route service is running. ADA paratransit service is provided within 3/4 of a mile of bus or light rail service and is intended to be used as a “safety net” by people with disabilities who are unable to use fixed-route service or limited in their use of fixed-route due to the nature of their disability.

ADA Paratransit Eligible Person: A person who has applied and been determined eligible for ADA paratransit service. In order to qualify, it must be determined that the person has a disability which limits travel on local fixed-route service according to strict criteria described in ADA regulations.

ADA Paratransit Eligibility Certification Process: A process adopted by the Phoenix Metro area pursuant to ADA requirements for determining eligibility for ADA paratransit. ADA regulations require each region to establish a process specifically to determine eligibility for ADA paratransit.

The eligibility determination process must consider the individual’s disability and functional ability to perform all tasks required to independently access, board, ride and deboard from the local fixed-route system. The combined interaction of disability with architectural and environmental conditions is also taken into account.

Disability: As defined by the ADA, a physical or mental impairment that significantly limits one or more major life activities such as walking, speaking, seeing, hearing, breathing or caring for one’s self.

Lifts and Ramps: Devices on vehicles that enable a person or mobility aid to board and deboard the bus without having to negotiate steps.

Mobility Aid: A piece of equipment, including, but not limited to, wheelchairs and scooters which assists a person with a disability. A mobility aid belongs to any class of three or more wheel devices, usable indoors, and designed for and used by individuals with mobility impairments, whether operated manually or powered.

Non-ADA Service: Shared-ride origin to destination Dial-a-Ride service not required to be provided by ADA federal regulations but is provided by the transit agency/provider using locally developed service standards.

Paratransit: Services that can be used as an alternative to fixed-route bus or light rail service for passengers who because of a disability are unable to use fixed-route service.

Personal Care Attendant (PCA): An individual who assists a person with a disability in carrying out his or her life activities.

Ready Window: The 30-minute time period when ADA paratransit customers must be ready for pick-up and the period within which drivers can arrive and be considered on time.

Securement System: A configuration of straps and hooks on a vehicle that are attached to a mobility aid to keep it stable during travel.

Service Animal: An animal that has been trained to perform specific tasks for an individual with a disability.

Trip: One-way travel of a person or vehicle between origin and destination.

Vehicle Wait Time: The maximum time that drivers are required to wait for customers after arriving at the pick-up location. The vehicle wait time does not start until the beginning of the ready window and is generally five minutes.