If you can’t complete all or some of your trips using public transportation, you may be eligible for Valley Metro’s ADA Paratransit/Dial-a-Ride services. Valley Metro has been providing paratransit services since 1994 as a response to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), according to Becky Johnson, the Accessible Transit Services Program Coordinator.
The first step in determining if you’re eligible is to contact the Mobility Center at (602) 716-2100, Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to request an ADA Paratransit application or you can fill out the application online here: https://www.valleymetro.org/form/valley-metro-ada-paratransit-application. After completing the application, call the phone number above to schedule an appointment for an in-person assessment with a transit evaluator that should take about 45 minutes. Valley Metro also provides free round-trip transportation within Maricopa County to the evaluation. Please let us know if you would like transportation when scheduling your appointment. There are no fees when applying for these services.
The assessment will be conducted at the Mobility Center located at 4600 E. Washington St. Suite 101, in Phoenix. The Mobility Center is a state-of-the-art facility used to assess ADA Paratransit/Dial-a-Ride eligibility. I met with the staff there whose focus is to help anyone with alternative transportation needs. Upon entering the facility, I was astonished to see a full size replica of the Valley’s public transit system, which includes a bus stop with a Valley Metro bus. The walls have streetscape murals and there is a street crossing with curbs, pedestrian activated traffic signal and a mock light rail station. The purpose of this simulation is to understand whether customers with disabilities can safely access the transit system. Additionally, it helps Valley Metro determine how to best accommodate each customer. They also offer a travel training program for people who want to learn how to use the system.
Within 21 days of the assessment, the client will receive an ADA Paratransit eligibility determination letter. Once it’s been determined that a client is eligible, there are additional alternative transportation programs they might be able to take advantage of depending on where they live.
Due to COVID-19, there are many preventative safety measures being used at the Mobility Center to keep clients and staff safe. They do a pre-appointment screening to check if the customer has experienced any flu-like symptoms within the last 14 days. Face coverings are required within the facility and it’s disinfected regularly. Inside the Mobility Center, there are high ceilings, good ventilation and the ability to maintain social distancing. If weather permits, the evaluation can also be done outside.
For more information on ADA Paratransit and eligibility, please visit our website: https://www.valleymetro.org/ada-paratransit-eligibility