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POWERSTARTERTheysayknowledgeispowerbutfundingsurehelpedusputourknowledgetoworkx6ThisyearFederalTransitAdministratorPeterRogoffpresentedCATSandtheCityofCharlottewithan18millionTransportationInvestmentGeneratingEconomicRecoveryIIITIGERIIIgrantfromtheUx6Sx6DepartmentofTransportationforcapacityandpowerenhancementsalongtheLYNXBlueLinetosupportthree-cartrainsx6Morethan19millionridershaveusedtheLYNXBlueLinesinceitopenedinNovember2007andweroutinelyaveragemorethan15000passengertripsperweekdayx6DuringspecialeventslikeCarolinaPanthersgamestheCentralIntercollegiateAthleticAssociationCIAAtournamentandFoodLionSpeedStreetdailyridershipcanmorethandoublex6Three-cartrainswouldhelptohandlelargecrowdsforspecialeventsandthisgrantmovesCATStowardoperatingthemalongextendedplatformswhichwillprovideadditionalcapacityandoperationalsavingsx6ConstructionissettobegininFY2014x6WEDONx19TSTOPFORMILESTONESWhenwereachonemilestonewedonx19tjuststoptherex6Maybethatx19swhytheBlueLineExtensionBLEisexperiencingsomuchmomentumx6A9x63mileextensionoftheexistinglightraillinewith11proposedstationstheBLEwillrunfromCenterCityCharlottetoUNCCharlottex6TheBLEreachedmanymilestonesthisyearx6TheFinalEnvironmentalImpactStatementwaspublishedintheFederalRegisterinOctober2011x6TwomonthslaterinDecembertheprojectreceivedaRecordofDecisionfromtheFTAwhichallowedtheBLEtoenterintoFinalDesignx6ButwhystopthereWeachievedanothermilestonethisyearwhenwereceivedaStateFullFundingGrantAgreementFFGAfromNCDOTx6NowtheprojectispreparedtoreceiveaFederalFFGAfromtheFTAinFY2013whichwillprovide50percentfundingx6ConstructionontheBLEisscheduledtobeginin2013withrevenueservicestartingin2017x612