Transit Authority Seeking Federal Funds for Multimodal Improvements

HYANNIS – The Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority is working to maintain federal funding for the region’s multi-modal transportation needs.

It was recently determined that transit numbers for the combined service between Hyannis and Nantucket from the Steamship Authority and Hy-Line Cruises met the threshold for added funding from the Federal Transit Administration.

There has to be more than 50% of riders going on a round trip in a single day with the services.

The federal government had previously been hesitant to buy the idea that commuters would use one service during their first trip and another later in the day to head back, according to CCRTA Administrator Tom Cahir.

That prompted Congressman William Keating to argue on the region’s behalf.

As a result, formula transit funding was increased by $3.2 million for Cape Cod.

Additional funding will be guaranteed for the next two years, and added funding beyond that depends on the outcome of a study from the Cape Cod Commission that will determine if the commuter numbers meet FTA standards.

Cahir felt that the meeting was productive and detailed, as it looked to prepare all parties to work together for more multi-modal funding.

“And if, in fact, we’re successful, which I’m certain now that we will be, we’ll have significant new federal dollars coming into our region in perpetuity,” Cahir said.

The study, which Cahir expects will take around nine months to finish, will involve interviews with passengers.

The CCRTA will be the designated recipient for the funds within the region. Cahir said that regular maintenance, the purchase of new buses and vans, and other expansions and improvements will be funded through the federal dollars.

“That’s why I like to interact and communicate very regularly with our multi-modal partners,” Cahir said, “so that we know what the needs are and new ideas that are surfacing, and we can point some of these resources towards those efforts.”

Peter Pan Bus Lines would also receive 25% of the funding.

Cahir thanked Keating for his support, along with the Cape Cod Commission for their help with the upcoming study.

About Brendan Fitzpatrick

Brendan, a recent graduate from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is one of the newest members of the NewsCenter team. When not on the beat, you'll probably find him watching Boston sports.
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