All Madison Metro buses are equipped with lifts to accommodate riders who use wheelchairs, crutches and other mobility devices. However, sometimes this isn’t enough. If you are affected by a disability which makes it difficult to get from your bus stop to your destination or otherwise prevents you from being able to use the bus, you may qualify for paratransit service.

Paratransit services takes riders from one building to another, rather than from one bus stop to another. This is called “curb to curb service”.

You may qualify for this service whether your disability is temporary or permanent, and whether it prevents you from using the mainline buses all the time or only under certain circumstances, such as when the weather is excessively hot or cold.

There are advantages and disadvantages to this service. You will have to schedule your rides in advance, for example, and there is no same-day service. On the other hand,being driven from building to building may help you bypass the challenges presented by the campus terrain and traffic.

If you do qualify for paratransit service, your ASM Bus Pass will cover the passenger fare, just as it does on Metro’s bus routes. There are no additional charges.

In order to qualify for paratransit service, you must apply to Madison Metro and meet certain requirements set by federal regulations. It may take up to 21 days to process an application, so the sooner you begin the process the better.

For more information on how this service works and for access to an application form, go to Madison Metro’s paratransit info page. Completed applications must be mailed or dropped off at Madison Metro. An original signature is required; faxes and emails are not sufficient due to federal regulations.

If you are approved you will also have to show evidence that you are a university student (a WisCard) and have an ASM Bus Pass.

If you need additional information contact Karen Darcy at Madison Metro: 267-8758 or kdarcy (AT) cityofmadison (DOT) com.

If you have questions about picking up an ASM Bus Pass in an emergency situation, please call Margaret at 263-3950.

Additional Resources

The McBurney Disability Resouces Center paratransit and transportation webpage contains more information about paratransit, parking permits and Wisconsin disabled license plates/cards check out the For information on accommodations available for students with temporary impairments and links to information useful to students with longer term impairments, see  the McBurney Center’s page on temporary impairments.

There are also four cab companies in the Madison: Union Cab, Badger Cab, Madison Taxi. and Green Cab. All take reservations and accept credit cards. Union Cab also offers wheelchair accessible service (lift-equipped vehicles). When you are trying to make it to class or other appointments, reservations are strongly encouraged.

If you have any questions or concerns about paratransit services or any other aspect of the bus pass program, please contact the ASM Bus Pass Program advisor at buspass (AT) rso (dot) wisc(dot) edu  or 263-3950.