Thornton Transit Study

The Thornton Transit Study Plan [PDF/36.9MB] incorporates public input received from previous meetings and proposes a 10-year transit plan for Thornton. 

Project Overview

The City of Thornton conducted a community-driven Transit Study to evaluate options and develop a plan to implement transit improvements over the next 10 years as envisioned in the Thornton Transportation and Mobility Master Plan. Half of Thornton’s population and land area is not currently served by transit, and current transit routes do not provide convenient access to key destinations in the City for many residents, including access to food, medical services, education, employment, recreation, or visiting other people. The Thornton Transit Study provides actions that the City may implement over 10 years to increase access to more areas of Thornton without using a private vehicle.

Project Goals

The goals of the Thornton Transit Study included:

  • Bring Thornton closer to implementing the Transportation and Mobility Master Plan’s Vision
  • Provide direction on how to implement transit improvements throughout Thornton over the next 10 years
  • Make transit a more viable mode choice for residents that do not currently have access to transit
  • Better serve those who are mobility challenged but not served by RTD’s Access-A-Ride

Transportation and Mobility Master Plan (TMMP) Transit Vision

Thornton Transit Vision - 2030 [PDF/1.4MB]

Thornton Transit Vision - 2050 [PDF/1.4MB]

Analysis Areas

The study analyzed and addresses the following:

  • How to serve more of Thornton with transit
  • Provide ridership projections for various alternatives to be considered
  • Determine the best type of transit service to meet the Community’s vision
  • Evaluate the impact of trip frequency as part of the alternatives analysis
  • Provide integration with Thornton’s active transportation system
  • Provide a cost magnitude and phasing for implementing the study
  • Integrate environmental justice and geographical equity in the development of the alternatives

Timeline and Key Milestones

The project began in November 2022 and was completed over 18 months ending in April 2024, to allow sufficient time for analysis, public engagement, and stakeholder review. The schedule was divided into four distinct phases, as shown below, including a phase for Visioning, Alternatives Analysis, Preferred Alternative/ Draft Plan, and Final Plan. The public had three opportunities to provide input as part of each significant project phase. In addition, the project was guided by a Stakeholder Group that will include representatives from the City of Thornton, RTD, CDOT, and DRCOG that will also meet during critical milestones of the project.

Chart displaying transit study schedule

Public Transit Study Meetings

Project Outcomes

Key elements of the final plan will included:

  • A transit operating plan
  • Performance measures
  • A financial plan for implementing transit
  • A 10-year implementation/phasing plan
  • Service delivery strategies
  • Supporting infrastructure