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CATS Receives $18 Million To Increase Ridership Capacity Along LYNX Blue Line

IMMEDIATE  RELEASE                                                                                                                                      

Contact:  Jean Leier, 704-432-0496

Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff awarded the Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) and the City of Charlotte today with an $18 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery III (TIGER III) grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation for capacity enhancements along the LYNX Blue Line.

“The City of Charlotte’s Blue Line has far surpassed ridership forecasts and this TIGER grant will help to accommodate more riders in the short run, while preparing for the greater growth is expected in the future,” Rogoff said. “The U.S. Department of Transportation is pleased to be your partner in finding transit solutions that meet the needs of residents and visitors.”

More than 19 million riders have used the LYNX Blue since it opened in November 2007.  Light rail ridership in Charlotte continues to exceed expectations as the light rail system carries over 15,000 passengers per weekday.  This grant will allow CATS to increase capacity for current and future ridership growth. 

“This grant provides CATS the ability to move towards operating three-car trains along extended platforms on the LYNX Blue Line,” said Carolyn Flowers, CATS CEO.  “The money received today will also be used to enhance the power along the line for running more light rail cars, which will assist CATS in future operational savings by being able to run longer trains.  We would not have been able to make these service enhancements at this time without the help of the FTA.”

Charlotte has seen a 35 percent population increase since 2005, making it the seventeenth largest city in the country.  By offering improved capacity on transit service, commuters will have greater mobility and access to alternate transportation as the city continues to grow.  To learn more about CATS and its services, log on to www.ridetransit.org or call CATS Customer Service at 704-336-7433.