CATS

 Blue Line Extension train
Crystal Hogue / WFAE

Though it's not set to officially open until March, trains will begin running along the Lynx Blue Line Extension Monday between uptown and UNC Charlotte.  There will not be any passengers on board though.  CATS says it’s running a simulation of the extended line. 

An architect's drawing of the proposed Charlotte Gateway Station on West Trade Street.
Charlotte Area Transit System

Charlotte Area Transit System and NCDOT have lined up funding and nearly completed design work on the on the planned Charlotte Gateway Station uptown.  Planning for the  project began more than a decade ago. The idea is to put passenger rail, the Gold Line streetcar and local and intercity buses in one place.

CATS Begins Blue Line Extension Testing

Jun 8, 2017
Crystal Hogue / WFAE

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.

A bicycle commuter on Commonwealth Avenue in Charlotte.
David Boraks / WFAE

Do you drive to and from work in the Charlotte area? Several local groups are promoting a bit of a competition this month called the Clean Commute Challenge. Charlotte Area Transit System, Sustain Charlotte and Charlotte Air Awareness are asking drivers to look for alternatives during the month of June.   

CATS Adds 11 New 'Luxury' Buses

Jun 1, 2017
The new CATS commuter buses are more comfortable
CATS

The Charlotte Area Transit System is adding to its fleet of what it calls "luxury" buses. The 11 new buses are like Greyhound buses. They have cushioned seats that recline, LED lights, and overhead storage. These buses will serve the longer routes, typically express routes, that average 30 miles.

David Boraks / WFAE

Construction on the Lynx Blue Line Extension is hitting some final milestones.  The last round of paving will begin this week on North Tryon Street next to the light rail line. And don’t be surprised if you start to see trains testing soon.

Sarah Delia

Residents and businesses along Charlotte’s light rail blue line extension received some bad news this week. The 9-mile line from uptown to UNC Charlotte won’t be opening in August as planned. It’s been delayed until next March. Businesses and residents in Charlotte’s NoDa neighborhood took the news especially hard as they saw August as the light at the end of a massive construction tunnel.

CATS CEO John Lewis announced the bus system overhaul at the Transit Center uptown Tuesday.
David Boraks / WFAE

CATS announced Monday a seven-month delay for the opening of the light rail Blue Line Extension from uptown to UNC-Charlotte. The line is now scheduled to open next March.  The completion will wrap up more than a decade of work on the light rail line. So what's next for Charlotte Area Transit System? Three more transit lines to be built all at once, says CATS CEO John Lewis. At least that’s his goal. WFAE's David Boraks has more.

CATS CEO John Lewis announced the bus system overhaul at the Transit Center uptown Tuesday.
David Boraks / WFAE

Charlotte Area Transit System has begun planning for an overhaul of the region's bus system. CATS CEO John Lewis says the goal of the Envision My Ride effort is to reach more people, increase the frequency of buses, and cut travel times.

CATS has cut some bus routes and added others so fewer riders have to pass through the Transit Center uptown.
Charlotte Area Transit System

The price you’ll pay to ride Charlotte Area Transit is going up in some cases, but CATS is not calling it a fare increase. The price of an individual ride is not going up, but the price of weekly passes is increasing from $22 to $30.80. CATS is also doing away with discounts on several 10-ride passes and reducing some volume discounts for people who buy transit passes through their employers.

David Boraks / WFAE

Charlotte Area Transit System will shut down the Lynx Blue Line light rail for two weekends over the next month for construction and repairs.  Blue Line trains won’t be running on Saturdays and Sundays, April 30-May 1, and May 7-8.

It’s the first complete shutdown since the Blue Line opened in 2007, CATS CEO John Lewis said Monday.

CATS has cut some bus routes and added others so fewer riders have to pass through the Transit Center uptown.
Charlotte Area Transit System

Charlotte Observer

The cost of fares and some passes for city buses and trains could go up in July as Charlotte Area Transit Systems looks for ways to boost revenue to meet operating costs.

CATS has proposed two options for fee increases for fares and passes. The public can comment on those proposals at a public hearing March 23. If approved by the Metropolitan Transit Commission, fares would change July 1.

Workers lift a girder into place for the Lynx Blue Line Extension over Harris Boulevard in February 2016.
David Boraks / WFAE

Construction of the Charlotte Area Transit System’s Lynx Blue Line northeast extension is hitting another milestone this weekend, with work on a light rail bridge over Harris Boulevard. The project is on track for a mid-2017 opening and already is bringing change to the area.

Hundreds of people taunted each other on the grounds of the South Carolina Statehouse Saturday during separate rallies staged by two groups from outside the state.

New Transit Needs New Revenue, Says Charlotte Mayor

Jan 13, 2015
Ben Bradford / WFAE

The City of Charlotte will need to come up with more money for transit projects, Mayor Dan Clodfelter announced during his State of the City speech Tuesday morning. The city has proposed future extension of the street car and possible rail and bus lines to the north and southeast. But Clodfelter says the state won’t support those projects as it has in the past.


Charlotte Premium Outlets

Charlotte's newest shopping mall complex, Charlotte Premium Outlets, will open its doors on Thursday morning. The mall has more than 100 stores and will host a four-day grand opening that's expected to draw large crowds -- and a lot of traffic -- near Steele Creek Road and I-485 in southwest Charlotte.  

Wiki Commons

Correction: This story includes a correction. The original reported the wrong number of freight trains on Norfolk-Southern's line between Charlotte and Mooresville. 

The planned Red Line commuter rail between Charlotte and Mooresville is getting dealt a major setback. Charlotte had arrangements to share existing tracks with the Norfolk Southern Railway Company, but that’s no longer the case.

CATS

There's a lot of construction going on at Charlotte Douglas International Airport. There are also fewer parking spaces. So finding parking is not easy.   

But to make it a little easier, airport and transit officials will begin offering two new express bus routes to the airport starting Monday. 


CATS Proposes Fare Increase

Mar 19, 2014
CATS has cut some bus routes and added others so fewer riders have to pass through the Transit Center uptown.
Charlotte Area Transit System

Public transit riders may soon see the cost of a ticket go up between $.10 to $0.40 for a single fare and from $0.85 to $16.00 for a multiple use pass. Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) manager of public and community relations, Jean Leier, says the increase would help keep the current operating hours and levels of service.

"The one thing that our financial policy does is it looks at small increases every two years versus waiting many years and having to do a substantial increase that would really have a negative impact on our customers," Leier says. "You know, a twenty cent would be much different than if you waited many years and all of a sudden had to do – let's say – a dollar to two dollars."

CATS

Major construction of bridges and tracks for the blue line light rail extension will begin in the next few months. And with that, be ready to spend more time in traffic. Charlotte Area Transit System officials announced Friday that it's making a map available to give commuters a heads up on road and lane closures and turning restrictions during construction.

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