Wednesday, September 24, 2014

CDTA Board Approves Locally-Preferred Alternative for River Corridor BRT

Approval Allows Project to Officially Apply For Federal “Small Starts” Funding

ALBANY, N.Y. (September 24, 2014The Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) Board of Directors approved the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) for the River Corridor Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line to be submitted to the Federal Transportation Administration (FTA) for entrance into the “Small Starts” funding program.

The designation of the River Corridor’s Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) is a step in the federal Alternatives Analysis (AA) process. The LPA travels via NY Route 32, Broadway, and US Route 4 between the Port of Albany and North Troy, with branches to the City of Cohoes and the Village of Waterford. BusPlus Stations with real time information signs and enhanced amenities are planned at 26 high-volume stop locations.

The Alternatives Analysis was presented to customers and stakeholders at a series of meetings over the summer as part of a comprehensive outreach program. The outreach focused on engineering constraints, costs, ridership, operational concerns, environmental impacts, and public acceptance of the project. The authorization designates the LPA for submission to the Capital District Transportation Committee (CDTC), the Capital Region’s federally-designated Metropolitan Planning Organization. The project must be included in the CDTC Long Range Regional Transportation Plan to be eligible for federal funding.

CDTA is progressing the implementation of its 40-mile Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) network along three high volume corridors in the Capital Region. The BusPlus Red Line connecting Albany and Schenectady has increased ridership on Route 5 more than 20% since its 2011 rollout, leading CDTA to develop plans for additional BRT lines along the Washington/Western (Purple Line) and River (Blue Line) Corridors.

In other news:

·         CDTA ridership continued its climb during August with 1.4 million boardings, up 6% from the same time last year. Fiscal year to date ridership totals 6.9 million, up 5% from the same period last year, putting CDTA on pace to exceed 17 million boardings for the first time. The increases are fueled by redesigned services, a growing partner base and universal access relationships.

·         The Board approved the purchase of Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel and Ultra Low Sulfur Kerosene from Mirabito Energy Products out of Binghamton. CDTA will execute an agreement with Mirabito to lock in pricing at $3.03 per gallon for fuel needed from May 2015 – April 2016.

·         The Board of Directors approved the purchase of 12 additional buses for fixed route operations from Gillig Corporation of Hayward, California. These buses will replace an equal number of vehicles currently used to run the fixed route service that have reached the end of their useful life. 

The CDTA Board of Directors meets on the last Wednesday of every month at the Rensselaer Rail Station. Board meetings are open to the public and streamed live

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