Hop on Board with the Mayor


I’M ON BOARD because Mountain Line contributes to the quality of life Missoulians enjoy today and plays a critical part in ensuring that quality of life for the future.

I was 14 years old and a Hellgate High School freshman when Mountain Line started 35 years ago with just four buses. The University of Montana was celebrating its 75th anniversary; Champion International had just merged with the Hoerner-Waldorf Corp; and while the airport was getting ready to expand, passenger train service was poised to end just two years later. Missoula was a city with change underfoot.

As the first community bus system in Montana, Mountain Line would remain a constant in Missoula, expanding to meet Missoula’s needs. Those original four buses evolved into the first-rate public transit system Missoula enjoys today, delivering more than 22 million rides in those 35 years.

Mountain Line gets employees to work, takes students to class, and helps senior citizens and people with disabilities remain independent. The bus system also helps our community lower traffic congestion, parking demand and air pollution levels. It is part of our appeal in the competitive marketplace for jobs and makes our community a great place to live. Truly, Mountain Line benefits us all!

Mountain Line serves more people in more ways than ever before:

  • Increased frequency with Bolt! – Route One’s super-convenient bus running every 15 minutes between downtown, UM and Southgate Mall.
  • More services for riders who bike – Bike racks on all buses — plus the Bike Den, a covered bike parking facility at the newly-renovated Downtown Transfer Center that’s complete with a bike repair stand and tools.
  • More ways to stay connected – Free on-board Wi-Fi service with 4G technology, thanks to Community Medical Center.
  • Increased convenience The Bus Tracker, an online utility that lets riders see exactly when their buses are approaching, Rider Alerts announcing temporary route changes, free ride programs and more, and smartphone apps that provide more convenient trip planning.

Serving as Missoula’s mayor is the best job I’ve ever had. I am responsible for the city’s day-to-day operations involving not only more than 500 city employees, but also the amazing citizens of Missoula, who work together to make this city a wonderful place to live and do business. Mountain Line is a part of that mix, contributing to our quality of life, and that’s why I’m On Board.

John Engen, Mayor