State College, PA - Centre County - Central Pennsylvania - Home of Penn State University

CATA Can Start $17 Million Maintenance Project Aided by $12.3 Million Federal Grant

by on July 20, 2012 11:28 AM

A $12.3 million award from the Federal Transit Administration allows CATA to officially move forward with a necessary $17 million maintenance project.

"The State of Good Repair" grant was awarded via a competitive process. Hugh Most, General Manager of CATA, said the $12.3 million was the largest award won in Pennsylvania this year and the biggest grant CATA has ever received.

CATA officials and staff submitted an application and subsequent letters of support written by Sen. Bob Casey and Rep. Glenn Thompson were sent to Washington, D.C.

"We were recognized as a very progressive transit organization," Mose said.

The grant will be matched with commitments already pledged of $5 million from PennDOT and about $200,000 locally, Mose said, which means CATA can finally put in motion its project of rebuilding and expanding its bus maintenance and storage facility.

"We were not going to be able to keep pace with public transit need in our growing community if we didn't do something to expand and to update," Mose said. "Our maintenance facility had reached maximum capacity.

"It's far beyond what we ever could have funded locally."

Support for the application came from the Downtown Improvement District, CATA staff and government officials, which Mose said he believes really propelled CATA's success in the competitive selection process for funding.

Mose said he's only two years away from retirement and seeing this massive and essential maintenance project come to fruition has always been at the top of his list.

"If we hadn't gotten this grant, I don't know how we would have ever been able to address this critical capital need," Mose said. "It's hard to put the words together to describe how important this is to CATA, to me personally and to the community."

Laura Nichols is a news reporter and @LC_Nichols on Twitter.
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