Smallest City with Public Transportation?

Inspired by this thread. Are there any really small towns with some sort of public transportation?

Many of the islands of Scotland have populations as low as a thousand or so, across a few square miles, and have Post Bus services - where the postman’s van is doubled as a public bus. I very much doubt this is the smallest anyone will find, but it’s a nice start :smiley:

I posted a thread about this several years ago.

Anyway, one poster mentioned Ashland, Wisconsin, pop: 9,000 or so, as having a very rudimentary bus system. One route circled the town a couple of times a day, and another provided service between Ashland and four neighboring towns.

If you don’t want to count Ashland because its system is too rudimentary, then I suggest:

Macomb, Illinois. Population: ~21,000. Has a pretty thorough bus system. HOWEVER, Macomb is a college town, and every late August through mid May the town has an extra 13,000 Western Illinois University students within its borders, bringing Macomb’s actual population to around 34,000.

Jacksonville, Illinois. Population: ~19,000. Has the West-Central Mass Transit District, which, according the Springfield, Illinois State Journal-Register, is a pretty thorough bus system. Jacksonville has two small colleges (Illinois College, where HeySissy is enrolled :cool: and MacMurray College), plus the Illinois School for the Blind and the Illinois School for the Deaf, increasing the town’s non-resident population by about 2,500 - 3,000 people.

NOTE: I’ve actually seen a Macomb bus, and a Macomb bus map, with my own eyes. As for Jacksonville, I only know about their bus system from having read about it in the SJ-R. The West-Central Mass Transit District does not have a website, so I can’t vouch for its existence with either a site OR a sight.

There are countless resort communities, with very low year-round populations, that provide public transit for the tourists. These are probably not within the spirit of the OP, however.

If one limits the search to (a) non-resort community, (b) dedicated transit (i.e. no “Post Bus”-type service where they’ll let you ride along), © public-accessible (i.e. not just for the disabled), AND (d) scheduled service (as opposed to “Dial-A-Ride”), one might be hard-pressed to beat Cloverdale, California.

Cloverdale Transit runs a single service route with seven trips each weekday for the benefit of the 6831 residents (2000 Census figure).

Does the public transportation have to be totally within the borders of that small town?

There are several bus lines that traverse Vernon, California (pop. around 80)

I was assuming in my post above that an unwritten rule was that the transit system had to be centered on the city in question, rather than part of a larger network. Otherwise, one would have to count any wide-bump-in-the-road town with a bus stop served by a neighboring city’s transit system.

Vernon, CA is an interesting city in its own right, being an “industrial city” in the middle of the Los Angeles megalopolis, with a tiny resident population (around 80 as you mention). The buses and light rail that serve Vernon are part of the LA MTA (Metropolitan Transit Authority).

I went to college in Potsdam, NY (whose 2000 population was 9,425) and it had a bus service that drove a ciruclar route through the village.

I grew up in a small town in rural Oklahoma.

Next time you’re in Shattuck, Oklahoma (pop. 1,000) give my mom a call, she’ll give you a ride. Hell, she’ll probably let you stay at her house if the local motel is full.


Enright buddy I know where ya coming from :smiley:
My home town…Montalba, Texas pop. 203…salute.

Not too long ago was a man had a mule and a coverednwagon with car tires on it and several row of school bus seats in it. He’d make the rounds in the AM and pickup the old timers and carry them to the cafe for their coffee. Drop 'em off at the store and whatever else they might need to do that morning. He’d get some feed, groceries, tobacco, whatever at the general store and go buy the post office etc. Usually one or two would stop in at my dad’s old store and they’d play dominoes 'til dinner time. That’s lunch for you whippersnappers. Of course Sunday there was church to attend. Mostly widowers who couldn’t drive anymore and everybody went too fast for 'em anyway. I knew one old man drove his tractor into town every day. He couldn’t get a drivers license anymore so he just did the best he could.

Mike How’s that for a small town with public transportation?

Wow, that’s awesome! It sure does have me beat. But’s it’s the same too. In Shattuck, there are at least 11 churches, and 4 taverns (can’t sell liquor, only beer). One of which my brother owns. Hey, if you’re in Shattuck, drop by Ted’s Recreation and say “Hi” to my brother Derb from Enright. Damn, that’d be funny! He’d freak out! My high school graduating class had 28 people in it (1980). Salute! Oh, and I’m not hijacking this thread… my brother will give you a ride too!

Cobourg, Ontario ha a population of around 17,000 and a 2 route service. I don’t know if they have an extra bus in case one breaks down, but I doubt it. Funny thing is, they both start downtown and go out to the mall and are at both locations at the same times. The bus stop signs have the minutes past the hour when the bus should be there.

Marietta, OH. Pop c. 12000. Has a bus service that makes regular runs during the day.

In the past there was a trolley system the rails of which still are in the brick streets. And the river cities area (Parkersburg, Marietta, Belpre, Williamstown, etc) used to have a well-developed rail system.

But it’s just the bus now.

Breckenridge, Colorado had a population of 2,658 in the 2000 census, and has in-town bus service year round (passing every 20 minutes, if I recall), as well as hourly bus service connecting Breckenridge to the nearby towns of Frisco, Silverthorne, and Dillon, as well as Keystone and Copper Mountain resorts.

Antonius Block’s distinction aside, I mention Breckenridge because it’s heavily used by the locals, not just the vacation crowd. In fact, during ski season, there is a second, supplemental service operated by the resort geared just for transport of skiiers. I lived there for seven years, during which I put less than 8,000 miles on my car, most of which was trips to Denver or back home to Nebraska. Granted, the system is paid for by the tourists (in the form of lodging taxes), but it’s used by everyone.

Whitby, Ontario, when I was a kid growing up there, had a population of around 20 000 and a “town bus” that made a circular route around the town. I never rode it because it didn’t go where I wanted to go (school and back, mostly); I used my bike, walked, or got rides. Of course, there was the interregional GO bus that went to Toronto, plus intercity buses passing through.

Now, Whitby has more than 80 000 people (more than the city of Peterborough!) and a seven-route bus system, plus GO trains and buses, but it has lost its standalone quality and is very much a betroom community of Toronto and Oshawa. The bus system is very much geared to the commuter who goes to Toronto. With the new university in Oshawa, the area is starting to mature, and I anticipate that transit systems will slowly improve and become more usable for local trips.

Next time I get up to Fairplay I may have to check in on ya. Been up Mosquito Pass lately?
AND Enright I’ll be passing through Amarillo probably. Heck I might just decide to skip that damned trek across no-mans land ie: Abilene and take 287 north or perhaps 35 to OK City then NW to Woodward. You know where that is I reckon? Should be pretty close. Maybe I can find some good homemade pie while I’m in the neighborhood. :wink:

Sorry; I only get back to visit, these days, and not nearly often enough. In 1998, I moved to Baton Rouge, and back to Nebraska in 2002. I was hoping to get back over Labor Day, but It’s looking like October or November at best now.

Nonetheless, Brian Head, Utah, pop 118 per census 2000. Don’t know whether the buses just run in the wintertime for the skiers, but they do have summer resort activities also.