The city of Conroe is hosting a public meeting July 7 at Meals on Wheels of Montgomery County to address transportation needs for seniors and people with disabilities.
Through Section 5310 of the Federal Transit Administration, a certain amount of money is allocated to cities to fund transportation projects for senior and disabled populations. For fiscal year 2015-16, the Conroe-The Woodlands Urbanized Area will receive approximately $156,000 to fund these resources. The UZA includes Conroe, The Woodlands, Willis, Panorama Village, Cut and Shoot, Shenandoah, Oak Ridge North and other parts of Montgomery County.
Residents are encouraged to attend the public meeting and fill out an online transportation survey by the July 10 deadline to voice their opinions on how local funds could be used.
“People who have barriers to transportation can struggle with day-to-day activities like going to work, shopping or making medical appointments,” Conroe Transportation Manager Shawn Johnson said. “Within the Conroe-The Woodlands Urbanized Area the number of seniors and individuals with disabilities who face these challenges today is growing. The community, as a whole, needs to plan and work together to address these growing demands.”
Meals on Wheels Montgomery County provides transportation solutions for seniors who are at least 65 years of age or have shown proof of disability. Through the senior rides program, the organization provides roughly 1,500 trips monthly, and 60 percent fall within urban areas.
“We have a large elderly population faced with aging in place,” said Allison Hulett, Meals on Wheels executive director. “With strategically placed services, such as transportation to the doctor, grocery [store] and other basic needs, they are able to maintain their health and independence to benefit themselves, their families and the community at large.”
Conroe launched the Conroe Connection transit service in January to help those in need of transportation reach key employment and service sectors within the city, and in April added a complementary Americans with Disabilities Act paratransit service through the program.
“Beyond the progressive step by the city of Conroe with Conroe Connection, [Montgomery County] has a very thin network of transportation resources,” Hulett said. “This is the population that feels that lack the most. They want to be self-sufficient but they need a ride.”
At the meeting Meals on Wheels will conduct a brief presentation on a mobility management pilot project, which looks for ways to meet transportation needs for the at-risk community with existing resources, Hulett said.
The meeting will be held at Meals on Wheels Montgomery County, 1202 Callahan Ave., Conroe, July 7 from 10 a.m.-noon. The organization can be contacted at 936-756-5828 or online at www.mowmc.org
Editor, Spring/Klein & Lake Houston/Humble/Kingwood
Hannah joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in May 2016 after graduating with a degree in journalism from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. In March 2019, she transitioned to editor of the Spring/Klein edition and later became the editor of both the Spring/Klein and Lake Houston/Humble/Kingwood editions in June 2021. Hannah covers education, local government, transportation, business, real estate development and nonprofits in these communities. Prior to CI, Hannah served as associate editor of The Houstonian, interned with Community Impact Newspaper and spent time writing for the Sam Houston State University College of Fine Arts and Mass Communication and The Huntsville Item.