MEMPHIS, Tenn. — All of the Shelby County Commissioners agree Shelby Farms is an asset to the area.
The problem is accessibility – it’s hard to get to. There isn’t a public bus route that will take you there, because somebody has to pay for it.
Shelby Farms is an escape from the city, but locals are having a hard time getting there.
The park’s executive director, Laura Adams, says they are working on it.
“Our job in working with public transportation to the park is to advocate for it. We can’t implement it, we can only advocate for it.”
Some commissioners disagree. The park can implement this service, by shelling out the cash for it.
Commissioner Steve Mulroy said, “MATA has already indicated that all Shelby Farms needs to do is give them $60,000 out of its $2.5 million operating budget, and they would do that service.”
The county commission gives Shelby Farms $600,000 a year to help run the park, and still does even after a private group took over the park six years ago.
They promised to increase public transportation to Shelby Farms, and so far they have not been met.
Mulroy said, “We keep kicking down the road what should be a priority. Enduring there is real access to the inner city from Shelby farms.”
Shelby Farms officials say they do have a plan, and they are working on getting a grant to pay for public transportation starting in the next year.
Should MATA get this grant, it should last for three years, and then they could possibly renew it for another three years.