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Washtenaw United: 'AARP Ride@50+' Keeps Older Residents On The Move

Alison Petersen
Feonix-Mobility Rising

Washtenaw County residents aged 50 and over may not get out and about as easily as younger folks.  It can be even harder for those with less financial means.  A new pilot program called "AARP Ride@50+" was developed to make public transit more accesible, and its community development manager, Alison Petersen, joined WEMU's David Fair to discuss the program and what it has, so far, achieved. 

WEMU has partnered with the United Way of Washtenaw County to explore the people, organizations, and institutions creating opportunity and equity in our area.  And, as part of this ongoing series, you’ll also hear from the people benefiting and growing from the investments being made in the areas of our community where there are gaps in available services.  It is a community voice.  It is 'Washtenaw United.'




Alison grew up in Ann Arbor, MI and went to college right down the road at the University of Michigan. Since then, she’s lived in Metro Detroit, Germany, and Washington DC before making her way back in 2016 to the city she loves so much - Ann Arbor.

In a career of over 20 years, Alison has worn a lot of hats - everything from publishing to graphic design, advertising, marketing and operations management.

Growing up in Southeast Michigan, so many people have ties to the auto industry and a connection in some way to transportation.  Because of that, Alison has always been interested in how people get from A to B.  How people do that is changing rapidly with technological advances and the advent of MaaS (Mobility-as-a-Service).  Alison is so grateful to be able to marry her passion for new ideas in mobility to doing good and making a difference here in the community she loves so much.

In her spare time, you can find Alison sitting on the sidelines of her kids' activities (virtual sidelines these days), reading, skiing, chillin' with her dog, and daydreaming about her next trip to the beach.


AARP Ride@50+ Program


“The AARP Ride@50+ Program is dedicated to simplifying access to transportation for people of all ages.  Built on the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) framework and powered by Feonix – Mobility Rising, the Ride@50+ Program is a one-stop shop for accessing public and private transportation options, providing a single point of access to review, compare, and book local transportation alternatives.” (from https://feonix.aarp.org/washtenaw/).  UWWC incorporates the importance of equity into its mission, vision, and values-- aspiring by 2030 to live in a community where your zip code no longer determines opportunities in your life.  AARP’s Ride@50+ program connects people to resources within Washtenaw County to help create a thriving environment for everyone.
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— David Fair is the WEMU News Director and host of Morning Edition on WEMU.  You can contact David at 734.487.3363, on twitter @DavidFairWEMU, or email him atdfair@emich.edu

Contact David: dfair@emich.edu
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