Press Release

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce Job-Generating Federal Investment for Capital District Transportation Authority –$5.5 Million Will Fund Critical Bus System Improvements

May 30, 2012

Today, U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced that the Department of Transportation is releasing $5,500,000 in grant funding through the Federal Transit Administration’s Bus Livability Initiative Project for the Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA). The CDTA will use these funds along the Route 5 corridor for capital improvements to intersections and bus stations, including connecting Bus Rapid Transit stations with high-speed fiber optic connectivity for an improved rider experience. The funding will also allow upgrades towards a faster fare payment system. This project was selected on a competitive basis from the Bus Livability Initiative and was announced in November 2011. Schumer and Gillibrand applaud the DOT for investing in the Capital Region and this important transportation project.  

“Across the region, riders are looking to get the most out of their bus route, whether they are commuting to work, taking the kids to school, or getting to appointments, and this federal investment will help them do just that,” said Schumer. “Infrastructure projects like improving intersections will put people to work and enhancing the quality of service with investments in bus stations and other projects throughout the system is crucial to Capital District bus riders.”

“This is an important investment for the Capital Region,” Senator Gillibrand said. “With bus ridership reaching new highs, updating infrastructure and technology for public transit will help cut down on wait times, connect more of our workers and businesses, and help get our economy on the move.”

“More than 3 million boardings have occurred on BusPlus buses since we began operation in April 2011,” said CDTA Chairwoman Denise A. Figueroa. “This represents a ridership increase of more than 15% since introduction day. We are grateful to Senator Schumer, Senator Gillibrand and other elected officials who worked together to bring the first Bus Rapid Transit system to upstate New York. Ridership numbers are proof positive that it works and we look forward to moving forward with 2 new BRT corridors, connecting Albany and Troy, and connecting Albany with the state office campus, UAlbany and Crossgates.”

Capital District Transportation Authority will use these funds to support additional capital improvements at intersections and stations to improve the rider experience along the route 5 corridor. Work will include infrastructure and service requirements to link each BRT station with high speed fiber optic connectivity, and the implementation of monitoring/reporting software to efficiently configure the Transit Signal Priority (TSP) system.

This project will enhance security for riders and also improve waiting times and provide riders with additional convenience through the design and implementation on new fare media.

The Bus Livability program makes funds available to public transit providers to finance capital projects to replace, rehabilitate, and purchase buses and related equipment and to construct bus- related facilities, including programs of bus and bus-related projects for assistance to sub-recipients that are public agencies, private companies engaged in public transportation, or private non-profit organizations.