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CATS usage rising

Lincoln County’s Express Bus service from Denver to downtown Charlotte has experienced an increase in its bus rider numbers.
The rate for July was 981 people a month, up from 731 people in June. This averages 46 people a day, up from 40 people a day in June.
The bus service began on June 7.
“I think it’s a good start. I would like to see it higher,” said Larry Kopf, manager of Service Development at the Charlotte Area Transit System. “But I think it is expected to have this amount of people at this time.”
The numbers for bus ridership are calculated through the fare box and the people swiping a pass. Each month a tally is done on the amount of people who have ridden the bus.
Kopf said the bus route is really starting to catch on.
“I think it takes time for people to change their habits,” he said.
Expanding the bus route, which now makes four trips a day, has not been discussed, but is always an option, said Kopf.
“We would have to have some comfort level to expand,” Kopf said. “There would have to be a demand for it.”
Kopf said all of the response on the bus service has been really positive.
“The people who ride it, love it,” he said.
The Union County Express, another bus service that goes to Charlotte, had a ridership of 2,241 a month. They have seven trips a day, three more than the Lincoln County Express.
Although this is not a fair comparison, Kopf said he could see the Lincoln County Express attracting this amount of people.
“The Union County Express is a very mature route, but they started off low,” Kopf said. “I could see the Lincoln County Express reaching that level.”
The bus rider numbers for August will come out in the middle of September. by Amy Wadsworth

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