Memphis Area Transit Authority

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For other uses, see MATA.
Memphis Area Transit Authority
MATA logo.png
MATA bus 855.jpg
Founded 1975
Headquarters Memphis, Tennessee
Service area Shelby County, Tennessee and West Memphis, Arkansas
Service type Public transit:
bus, streetcar
Routes 35 bus, 3 trolley
Destinations Memphis, Germantown, Bartlett, Tennessee and West Memphis, Arkansas
Hubs 4
Fleet 244 buses, 20 trolley cars
Daily ridership 11 million person trips in 2006
Fuel type Diesel (for buses)
Operator First Transit
Chief executive Ray Holt
Website MATA
A former Porto, Portugal trolley in Memphis, operated by MATA

The Memphis Area Transit Authority (MATA) is the largest transit agency in Tennessee. MATA operates 35 bus routes, paratransit service for persons with disabilities (MATAplus), trolley service on three routes, and special-event shuttles for Memphis Grizzlies basketball games and University of Memphis Tigers basketball games at the FedEx Forum.[1]

System background[edit]

The system was formed in 1975 to service the greater Memphis and Shelby County Tennessee area and nearby West Memphis, Arkansas. MATA is run by a general manager and a nine-member board of commissioners, appointed by the Mayor of Memphis and approved by the Memphis City Council.[2] The transit agency operates 150 buses, mostly Gillig Advantage low-floors (both diesel and diesel/electric hybrids), and NovaBus LFS low floors buses on 35 routes. In the past, its roster included GM TDH-5300 and TDH-4500 "New Looks" and Flxible 40-102 New Look series (carryovers from its predecessor prior to MATA's formation), AM General 40 ft., MAN articulateds and the RTS series from GM, TMC and NovaBus. The RTS series were MATA's preferred fleet of choice, having been used in its lineup from February 1980 until its retirement in April 2010, when the six remaining 1994 NovaBus versions were replaced with the Gillig Advantage Hybrids. MATA hopes to shift to a hybrid fleet in the future.


Rail service[edit]

Main article: MATA Trolley

MATA also operates a trolley service. Initially opened in 1993, the Main Street Trolley Line uses classic streetcars on a system that has grown to three routes: one along the riverfront, another serving Main Street in the heart of downtown Memphis, and an extension on Madison Avenue. The Madison Avenue line opened in 2004,[3] as the initial stage of a light rail system that would connect downtown Memphis with the Memphis International Airport and eventually to regional transit service beyond the MATA service boundaries.


External links[edit]