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  • Ruchita Kulkarni

Groome Transportation replaces TARTA as a vendor for buses: What’s with the odd propane buses?

Updated: Jun 5, 2023

If you’ve been wondering what the latest bus changes are all about, you’re not alone. Many students have been puzzled by the recent updates to the bus system. Students had grown to be comfortable with the ‘blue loop’ through TARTA. However, these buses have been replaced with dull-white school buses, running the same route as before. Brian Kulpa, the Executive Director for Auxiliary Services, reported that TARTA’s reign over shuttle services came to an end after a ‘contract impasse.’ He cited many reasons for the change, including poor customer service, lack of technology, large price increases, and charging for rides outside the Blue Loop.

The new vendor is Groome Transportation, which serves many universities throughout the country. These vehicles are ADA-compliant, with enhanced levels of security, featuring video-camera surveillance and Rocket-card-only entrance. The buses occasionally have the radio on, with music to accompany you while you travel.

While the previous app used for live bus tracking was the ‘Passio GO!’ app, a new app titled ‘TransLoc’ is currently being used. These all-too-dull jail buses are soon to be replaced by Fall. Ford Motor Company has a recall on the new ‘22 passenger buses’, and supply chain delays will hopefully clear up in time so that the buses can arrive and be branded for UT.

While this new change has been confusing to deal with, international students were one of the most impacted groups by this change. Many of them don’t own cars, and have a huge dependency on buses. The new updates have finally settled in and students are slowly getting the hang of the new app as the days pass by. The newly branded buses will be much awaited for.


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