Contact: Angela Gates
CLEVELAND – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) today celebrated the groundbreaking of the West Shore Express Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line that will significantly improve bus service along Clifton Boulevard, a key transportation corridor connecting the western suburb of Lakewood to downtown Cleveland. FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff joined Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, Lakewood Mayor Michael Summers, Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) CEO Joe Calabrese and other local officials at the event.
“The expanded bus service will better connect the people of Ohio to jobs, schools, and economic opportunities for years to come,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Cleveland’s bold vision to place transit within easy reach of residents will contribute to the region’s revitalization – and fulfills President Obama’s call for a stronger transportation system for future generations.”
The U.S. Department of Transportation is providing roughly $16.3 million toward the $20 million West Shore Express BRT line, including $8.5 million for the purchase of 15 new buses manufactured by New Flyer Industries in St. Cloud, Minnesota.
“Cleveland residents already know that BRT done right is an effective way to reduce congestion, shorten commutes, and improve access to downtown, as the very popular HealthLine BRT on Euclid Avenue has shown,” said FTA Administrator Rogoff. “We’re proud to support the city’s effort to bring a second BRT line to the Lakewood community and Clifton Boulevard, resulting in a reliable and desirable ride for commuters, students at Cleveland State, seniors, and those who depend on transit to get around.”
The West Shore Express BRT line along Clifton Boulevard will provide fast, efficient transit service along a four-mile corridor between Westgate Transit Center in Fairview Park and the federally-funded Stephanie Tubbs Jones Transit Center downtown, with buses traveling in bus-only curb lanes during peak commuting hours; traffic signal priority to improve on-time bus service; and 19 new, lighted bus shelters with improved passenger amenities, including real-time GPS-based bus arrival monitors.
While in Cleveland, FTA Administrator Rogoff also announced the release of a $796,800 grant to the Greater Cleveland RTA through FTA’s State of Good Repair Program to purchase 11 new paratransit vehicles. These will replace older vehicles in RTA’s fleet that have reached or exceed their useful life and ensure reliable transit service for people with disabilities.