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Charlotte Area

CATS Begins Blue Line Extension Testing

Crystal Hogue
Blue Line Extension train

You may see Blue Line Extension trains going up and down North Tryon, but they’re not picking up passengers, Charlotte Area Transit is just testing the tracks.

The Blue Line Extension won’t open until March of next year, but CATS says it’s time to start testing. That means you’ll see and hear empty trains on the tracks. CATS is starting with low-speed testing to make sure there’s a good connection with the electricity along the rail. Blue Line project director, Jill Brim says the light rail is in one of the many testing stages.

Credit Crystal Hogue / WFAE
Jill Brim, Blue Line Project Director

“This is called the breakout testing. We’re testing communications systems currently. After communications systems we test signal systems. Then we start putting the whole alignment together.” Said Brim.

Right now there aren’t any gates or lights to warn cars and pedestrians. CMPD and CATS workers are directing traffic along during test runs. Brim hopes the signals will be up and working in the next few weeks.

CATS projects that the Blue Line Extension is will to serve up to 25,000 riders a day.