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CATS Cuts Ribbon for LYNX Blue Line Extension

In anticipation of the March 16 launch of service for the light rail LYNX Blue Line Extension (BLE), the Charlotte (NC) Area Transit System (CATS) recently hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the new UNC Charlotte Main Station, followed by an inaugural ride for community leaders.

The project fulfills the vision set forth by regional leaders in the 2030 Transit Corridor System Plan, adding 9.3 miles and 11 stations to the existing 15 stations of the LYNX Blue Line, which opened in 2007. The alignment also includes four new park-and-ride stations with approximately 3,000 spaces.

CATS Chief Executive Officer John Lewis said the event was especially meaningful for the staff who contributed to this project. “This is a great day not only for Charlotte citizens, but also for the hardworking CATS team who dedicated more than a decade to this project,” he said. “The completion of the BLE is but another step towards a comprehensive transportation system that will offer more choices and alternatives to traffic congestion.”

Charlotte Mayor Vi Alexander Lyles said at the event, “We are excited to celebrate everyone who shared in the vision that was created for a more connective Charlotte and who continue to invest in building a community of opportunities that includes jobs and education.”

Philip L. Dubois, chancellor of UNC Charlotte, noted how, with the arrival of light rail on campus, “our students have access to the many business, cultural and entertainment assets of Center City and the community will be able to take full advantage of the university’s many academic programs and to take part in our extensive arts, cultural and athletic offerings.”

CATS continues to run pre-revenue service along the entire LYNX alignment until the first day of regular service, March 16.

CATS CEO John Lewis, fourth from right, helps cut the ribbon for the LYNX Blue Line Extension in Charlotte, NC.

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