How to Save Charlotte's Dying Bus System

The epidemic of falling ridership has struck no American city as hard as Charlotte, but there's plenty that could be done to recover.

1 minute read

May 15, 2018, 6:00 AM PDT

By Casey Brazeal @northandclark

North Carolina

Sharkshock / Shutterstock

American bus transit is in a bad state, and by the numbers, Charlotte, North Carolina is in the worst shape of any large city in the country. "The current CATS transit network simply isn’t working very well for many of the 75 percent of its riders who use the bus. The average one-way travel time for a CATS passenger who has to transfer between routes is 90 minutes," Shannon Binns argues for the Charlotte Observer.

The city has a plan to redesign and grow its bus network to make it more frequent, walkable, and direct. "A redesigned bus network will not only better serve current riders, but also attract new ones. TransitCenter, a New York-based foundation dedicated to transit reform, identifies growth in the number of people who ride transit often and for multiple purposes as an important indicator of whether transit is serving its function of helping a city meet its “triple bottom line” of economic growth, environmental stability, and social equity," Binns reports.

Friday, May 11, 2018 in The Charlotte Observer

Aerial view of Oceanwide Plaza skyscrapers covered with graffiti tags.

LA’s Abandoned Towers Loom as a “$1.2 Billion Ruin of Global Capital”

Oceanwide Plaza, shuttered mid-construction after its developer filed for bankruptcy, has stood vacant on prime Los Angeles real estate since 2019.

May 21, 2024 - The Architect's Newspaper

Entrance to a drive-through car wash at night with green 'Enter' sign.

Ohio Towns Move to Ban New Car Washes

City officials in northeast Ohio are putting limits on how many car wash facilities can open in their towns.

May 16, 2024 - News 5 Cleveland

Acela train at Wilmington station in Wilmington, Delaware.

The Passenger Rail Revival Is Here

For the first time in decades, multiple rail projects are moving forward that could have a transformative impact on train travel in the United States.

May 21, 2024 - Route Fifty

California Governor Gavin Newsom announcing funding for tiny home shelter project in front of quick-build tiny home shelter unit.

California’s Tiny Home Pledge Still on Paper, One Year Later

A promise to fund 1,200 tiny homes for unhoused residents in four cities as a way to rapidly and cost-effectively provide shelter has yet to yield tangible results, but projects are moving ahead in some cities.

May 24 - CALmatters

Residential neighborhood in Colorado with fall foliage and snowy mountains in background.

Colorado Ends Non-Family Occupancy Limits

Local jurisdictions will no longer be able to limit how many unrelated adults can live in a household, a move that supporters say will help lower housing costs and help older adults supplement their incomes and stay in their homes.

May 24 - Strong Towns

A white crosswalk painted by Crosswalk Collective LA in Los Angeles, California.

Guerilla Urbanism Spurs Action From Cities

Rather than take a hostile approach to DIY urbanism, some cities are using guerilla efforts as an opportunity to understand critical infrastructure gaps.

May 24 - Smart Cities Dive

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.