​Thornton Transit Study

Project Overview

The City of Thornton is leading 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 will provide clearly defined actions that the City will implement over the next 10 years to increase access to more areas of Thornton without using a private vehicle.

Project Goals

The goals of the Thornton Transit Study include:

  • Bring Thornton closer to implementing the Transportation and Mobility Master Plan’s Vision

  • Provide clear 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 2030Thornton Transit Vision 2050

Analysis Areas

The study will analyze and address 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 will be completed over 18 months ending in April 2024, to allow sufficient time for analysis, public engagement, and stakeholder review. The schedule is divided into four distinct phases, as shown below, including a phase for Visioning, Alternatives Analysis, Preferred Alternative/ Draft Plan, and Final Plan. The public will have three opportunities to provide input as part of each significant project phase. In addition, the project will be 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.

Anticipated Project Outcomes

Key elements of the final plan will include:

  • A transit operating plan

  • Performance measures

  • A financial plan for implementing transit

  • A 10-year implementation/phasing plan

  • Service delivery strategies

  • Supporting infrastructure

Project Updates 

  • COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT - Community engagement thus far has included: 
    • A public online survey;
    • An in-person and virtual community open house (See links in right column for meeting materials);
    • An online mapping exercise;
    • A stakeholder group of local and regional partners;
    • A project website; and
    • Several focus groups
  • TRAVEL MARKET ANALYSIS - Review the Transit Market Analysis , which includes the project’s background, a comprehensive demographic analysis, an evaluation of the existing transit service, an analysis of travel patterns, community input, and a review of peer communities. (See link in right column)
  • ALTERNATIVES ANALYSIS - Based on input from the first round of community engagement and the transit market analysis, the project team developed a set of alternatives, including two microtransit (on-demand transit) options and three fixed-route bus improvement options. The alternatives are for comparative purposes to understand the different benefits and challenges of several transit improvements in Thornton. The preferred alternative may be a variation or mix of the alternatives and may be implemented in phases. (See links in right column)

We Want Your Input!!

How to Participate

  • Complete the online Transit Study Survey on Alternatives (See link in right column)
  • Contact Kent.Moorman@ThorntonCO.gov with questions.
Public Transit Study Meetings
Transit Market Analysis Report
Public Surveys