Metro RTA

photo of METRO RTA shuttle

Akron’s mass transit system is reducing service in response to the coronavirus pandemic – which is also impacting ridership in Canton and Cleveland.

Metro RTA will be reducing the number of buses on some routes in Akron starting today. Saturdays will be unchanged, but Sunday service will be eliminated.

Executive Director Dawn Distler says, since the pandemic started, her staff has been keeping buses fueled up, operating, and extra clean. But now, they’re becoming short-staffed due to coronavirus.


Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, March 31:

A photo of Summit Lake Apartments

The Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority (AMHA) is trying out a new program that aims to help people who live in public housing overcome obstacles for employment.

As part of the program, case managers will be available to meet with people living at AMHA's Summit Lake Apartments.

AMHA executive director Brian Gage says finding a job is not always the hard part.

A Metro RTA bus

Akron Metro RTA plans to use $3 million in grant funding from the State of Ohio for bus maintenance and bus stop improvements.

The money will also help Metro RTA fund new programs, including Flex Ride. The initiative aims to connect suburban job centers with workers in need of transportation. The program is expected to launch next year.

Metro RTA Planning Director Valarie Shay, says this money allows the organization the opportunity to do more with current budgets.

Metro RTA Offers Mobile Pay Option with EZfare

Oct 14, 2019

Riders of Akron Metro RTA Buses no longer have to worry about bringing along cash to pay for their ticket. The agency has launched an app that allows riders to pay their fare directly from their smartphones.

Metro RTA Spokesperson Halee Gerenday says the EZfare app will enhance the customer experience.


photo of METRO RTA shuttle

Akron Metro RTA is looking to make traveling to and from work easier by bringing transportation right to your door.

The transportation system was one of three winners of The Paradox Prize, a grant from the Fund for Our Economic Future, which looks to better connect people with employers.

Metro RTA will receive $75,000. It plans to use the funds to provide better transportation to jobs for workers, either from their homes or from the transit center in downtown Akron. 

photo of Larry Householder

Advocates for public transportation say they’re concerned that there’s no one from that sector on Gov. Mike DeWine’s committee that will recommend how to find money for major road construction projects. That group meets this week. Public transit might not be top of mind for the Ohio House leader either.


Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, Jan. 30:

Emilie Zhang / Shutterstock

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, Jan. 29:

Mike DeWine

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, Jan. 23:


Akron’s Metro RTA estimates more than four million people have ridden Metro buses this year. On Monday, Mayor Dan Horrigan was one of them. 

The mayor boarded the crowded #8 bus at the Kenmore and Lakeshore stop, chatting with riders and discussing how the city can work together with RTA to improve the service. In a conversation with Metro RTA director Dawn Distler, Mayor Horrigan wondered how long it takes to get places by bus. 

photo of METRO RTA transit center in Akron
Google Maps

She used to be a METRO RTA driver. Now Dawn Distler is the agency's new Executive Director. She’s returning to northeast Ohio after 15 successful years in transit management in Tennessee, in Nashville and in Knoxville. What brought her back, and what are her plans for METRO RTA’s future?

photo of Akron Marathon

Here are your morning headlines for Friday, September 28:

photo of Dawn Distler

Akron Metro RTA has hired one of its former bus drivers to serve as the agency’s new executive director.

Dawn Distler takes over September 24. She is currently the transit director at Knoxville Area Transit in Tennessee.

Metro RTA’s Director of Communications and Marketing Molly Becker says Distler’s extensive career in transit is important to the agency.

photo of Akron Beacon Journal

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, September 5:

  • Akron voters to decide moving primary election;
  • Tennessee-based company to operate closed Massillon health center;
  • Two icelandic air careers cancel flights from Cleveland;
  • Two-tiered housing exists in Cleveland after financial crisis;
  • Toldeo police get new body cameras;
  • Metro RTA announces new executive director;
  • Cooling stations open amid heat wave;

Akron voters to decide moving primary election

Filing out after Board of Trustees meeting
Tim Rudell / WKSU

The Akron Metro RTA trustees  fired Executive Director Richard Enty Friday afternoon. He’s been on paid administrative leave since November while investigations into his conduct on the job have been underway.

During a special meeting, the trustees voted 8-1, with one abstention, to terminate Richard Enty’s contract.  They were unanimous in declining comment on reasons for the firing.

Davis Besse

Correction:  This article originally included a story referencing the executive director of the Greater Cleveland RTA.  The person in the story is actually executive director of Akron Metro RTA.

Here are your morning headlines for Friday, Jan. 26:

METRO RTA HQ, board meeting room
Tim Rudell / WKSU

The fate of METRO RTA Executive Director Richard Enty remains unknown.

Enty has been on paid administrative leave -- his third suspension in his five years heading the public transit agency -- since November.

The agency’s board held a special meeting today to discuss “a personnel matter.” Immediately after assembling, the Board went into executive session. It adjourned without comment about an hour later.  Legal counsel Karen Adinolfi would only say that no decisions were made. 


The board of Summit County’s public transportation agency has set a special meeting for tomorrow  as its executive director enters the third month of a suspension and the FBI is making inquiries.

Richard Enty has been on paid leave since early November, when Akron Metro RTA board President Saundra Foster resigned. They’d been the focus of a complaint to the Ohio Ethics Commission that Enty gave Foster gifts – including a car starter --  and rides at a time when she was overseeing negotiations on his new three-year contract.

Metro RTA terminal, Akron
Metro RTA

The Executive Director of Akron Metro RTA has been suspended after the transit agency’s board of trustees voted to place Richard Enty on paid administrative leave. It's the third time Enty has been suspended.

The board met in a special session at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday, then went into executive session for about an hour.

photo of Cuyahoga County courthouse

Here are your morning headlines for Friday, November 3rd:

Metro RTA Terminal, Akron
Metro RTA / Facebook

The Akron/Summit County Metro RTA Board is still awaiting word from the Ohio Ethics Commission on complaints it filed against the system’s Executive Director and an officer of the board. 

METRO RTA transfer center

The Summit METRO RTA Board will meet this week to decide what comes next for the man who has run the agency for the past five years. Richard Enty was suspended with pay April 9th and escorted from his office. An email he sent to the management staff and board triggered the suspension.

photo of RTA train

Public transportation ridership is down in Northeast Ohio, but the area’s transit agencies say there a number of factors that could reverse that trend.

Cuyahoga County-based RTA moved about 44 million riders last year, down 7 percent from 2015. Ridership is also down in Stark and Summit counties, and all three systems cite low gas prices and shifting populations among the reasons why. Richard Enty with Akron-based Metro RTA says one of the challenges is meeting riders where they live.