CDTA 2019 year in re­view

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - LOCAL NEWS - Staff re­port

The Cap­i­tal Dis­trict Trans­porta­tion Author­ity con­tin­ued to con­nect peo­ple to eco­nomic op­por­tu­nity through­out 2019.

CDTA closed out the year with a great sense of ac­com­plish­ment and pride in the work it does to make the Cap­i­tal Re­gion move. The fol­low­ing is a look at some of CDTA’s top projects and ac­com­plish­ments in 2019.

• UNI­VER­SAL AC­CESS – CDTA’s sig­na­ture pro­gram con­tin­ued to power tran­sit­ser­vices through­out the Cap­i­tal Re­gion. By whole­sal­ing rid­er­ship and part­ner­ship de­vel­op­ment, our Uni­ver­sal Ac­cess part­ner­ships re­sulted in over 4.4 mil­lion rides this year. More than 25% of the pro­gram part­ners have added CDPHP Cy­cle! to their trans­porta­tion choices head­ing into 2020.

• DOWN­TOWN CON­NEC­TIONS – CDTA’s net­work of Trol­leys con­tin­ued to en­hance con­nec­tions through­out 2019. Sch­enec­tady’s Elec­tric City Trol­ley sup­ported Mo­hawk Har­bor events, the Saratoga Sum­mer Trol­ley pro­vided nearly 20,000 trips and Al­bany’s Cap­i­tal City Trol­ley con­tin­ued to con­nect the grow­ing down­town core. These ser­vices, which are sup­ported by a net­work of part­ners, fo­cus on en­hanc­ing the re­gion’s as­sets, de­signed to drive tourism and im­prove mo­bil­ity in down­town cen­ters.

• RIDESHARE MEETS TRAN­SIT – The Board of Di­rec­tors con­tin­ued to steer CDTA into the 21st cen­tury econ­omy with ap­proval of a mi­cro tran­sit pilot, which is called FLEX. Mi­cro tran­sit of­fers a flex­i­ble rout­ing and trip sched­ul­ing plat­form for cus­tomers. Look for a CDTA shared-use ve­hi­cle, pro­vid­ing a hy­brid ser­vice be­tween fixed route and rideshar­ing, start­ing in early 2020.

• CDPHP CY­CLE! PED­ALS TO THE TOP – CDPHP Cy­cle! fin­ished its third sea­son with record-break­ing rid­er­ship. More than 41,000 trips were taken in Al­bany, Co­hoes, Sch­enec­tady, Troy, and Saratoga Springs. Con­tribut­ing to sig­nif­i­cant rid­er­ship gains in sea­son three was the in­tro­duc­tion of CDPHP Cy­cle! Ac­cess agree­ments with col­leges and busi­nesses across the Cap­i­tal Re­gion. With RPI and UAlbany adding CDPHP Cy­cle! Ac­cess to their cam­pus com­mu­ni­ties in 2019, rid­er­ship in Al­bany and Troy soared to more than 33,000.

• IT’S ELEC­TRIC – In 2020, CDTA we will be the first tran­sit sys­tem in up­state New York to in­tro­duce elec­tric buses. Elec­tric bus tech­nol­ogy is at the fore­front of con­sid­er­a­tion for many tran­sit agen­cies across the coun­try. The pilot will run for sev­eral months to pro­vide op­er­at­ing and fi­nan­cial in­for­ma­tion about this new and 100% green propul­sion sys­tem. This will ex­pand our mo­bil­ity menu; giv­ing cus­tomers and our com­mu­nity more op­tions to nav­i­gate the Cap­i­tal Re­gion. CDTA will un­veil its highly an­tic­i­pated Elec­tric buses to the com­mu­nity on Jan. 3 at its Al­bany fa­cil­ity. We will be op­er­at­ing New Flyer’s Xcel­sior CHARGE 40-foot buses. Those buses will elim­i­nate be­tween 85 and 175 tons of green­house gas emis­sions an­nu­ally, which sup­ports CDTA’s sus­tain­able mis­sion to im­prove ac­ces­si­bil­ity and mo­bil­ity. This will also help the state reach its goal of tran­si­tion­ing to 100 per­cent re­new­able en­ergy by 2040.

• BUS RAPID TRAN­SIT; TAKE TWO - Work on our sec­ond Bus Rapid Tran­sit (BRT) line is un­der­way. Part of the project in­cludes the ex­pan­sion of our Troy garage, which is needed to house ve­hi­cles for the River Cor­ri­dor BRT. It is also part of com­pre­hen­sive ren­o­va­tion work on our fa­cil­i­ties; the Troy garage opened in 1980 and has had only minor in­cre­men­tal im­prove­ments. The ren­o­va­tion will up­grade work flow and ef­fi­ciency, es­pe­cially in the main­te­nance area. The River Cor­ri­dor BRT will be op­er­a­tional in fall 2020.

• FALL FUN – CDTA hosted its fifth an­nual Fall Fes­ti­val at our ad­min­is­tra­tive head­quar­ters, open­ing our doors to the com­mu­nity and more than 500 area school chil­dren. Our prop­erty was trans­formed with pump­kins, scare­crows, hayrides and demon­stra­tions from the Al­bany Po­lice and Fire De­part­ments, the New York State Po­lice dive team, Al­bany Pub­lic Li­brary along with other com­mu­nity part­ners and themed ac­tiv­i­ties.

• COM­MU­NITY MAT­TERS – CDTA is com­mit­ted to the com­mu­nity, pro­vid­ing trans­porta­tion for more than 100 events through­out the year. Our ser­vices make it pos­si­ble for chil­dren, se­niors and oth­ers to be ac­tive mem­bers of their com­mu­nity. Giv­ing back to the com­mu­nity is an im­por­tant way for CDTA to be an in­te­gral piece of the vi­tal­ity and growth of the re­gion.

• BOARD LEAD­ER­SHIP – Jayme B. Lahut was elected to serve as Chair­man of the Board of Di­rec­tors Lahut, who lives in Niskayuna and rep­re­sents Sch­enec­tady County, suc­ceeds Ge­orgeanna Nu­gent as chair. Lahut con­tin­ues the for­ward think­ing and pro­gres­sive vi­sion our Board of Di­rec­tors has set for the or­ga­ni­za­tion. Board of­fi­cers serve one-year terms and are elected by the peers. Lahut joined the Board in 2017. He is Ex­ec­u­tive Direc­tor of the Sch­enec­tady Metro­plex De­vel­op­ment Author­ity.

FILE PHOTO

A CDTA bus rides along Broad­way in Saratoga Springs.

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