The great experiment to expand public transit services outside of Weirton and into neighboring communities officially has come to an end.
Earlier this week, it was announced Weirton Transit Corp. would be discontinuing its route into New Cumberland after a drop in riders from the community and not enough funding to support the program.
It is unfortunate this had to happen as there had been some residents making use of the transit service, and New Cumberland City Council seemd to be willing to assist where it could. Unfortunately, it simply wasn't enough to keep it going for now.
The decision also follows a loss of support from the Brooke County Commission and the cities of Follansbee and Wellsburg, all of which cited a lack of ridership in their areas when they decided to pull funding from the expansion pilot program last year.
The WTC has done a great job of working to continue and expand its operations in recent years, and is in the process of putting together cooperative agreements with other local services, but there is always room to grow when it comes to providing transportation to area residents who might not be able to get around on their own.
We do hope there are opportunities in the future to revisit such an expansion farther into our communities. When that time comes, we hope the local counties and municipalities will be in a better place to support the system, and urge them and our residents to do so.