Community and Senior Services (CSS) of Johnston County has been awarded $2.2 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Authority to expand the Johnston County Area Transit System’s Facility on W. Noble Street in Selma. The expansion will help JCATS better meet their current operational needs as well as prepare for successfully meeting future transportation needs.
According to Neal Davis, CSS Executive Director, “CSS is developing plans to coordinate service into the Go Raleigh and Go Triangle fixed route networks, to provide first mile-last mile connectivity to Johnston Regional Airport, Amtrak-Selma, and eventually to commuter rail into the Triangle.”
The total cost of this expansion is anticipated to be around $3 million. CSS reserves and county matching dollars will be used to supplement the $2.2 million federal funding. The CSS project was one of only 94 to receive funding from more than 318 eligible projects in 42 states.
“CSS has been seeking federal funding for four years via individual applications and joint applications with other agencies. I am proud of their persistence and congratulate them on receiving this funding which will help strengthen our transportation infrastructure,” stated Selma Mayor Cheryl Oliver.
Currently, 31 JCATS vehicles provided more than 94,000 rides last year. Due to the county’s rapid growth, demand for their services is growing substantially. Mr. Davis says by 2046, the JCATS fleet is projected to require 51 vehicles and 66 employees at the current site. That represents a 65 percent increase in jobs.
In an Oct. 2019 story about the need for a new facility, Davis told JoCoReport.com a new building is desperately needed. “We’re operating from an old 2,000 square foot modular unit. It’s limited to no more than 20 occupants, but we have 40 employees. We have no space for training or weather briefings and no passenger waiting area.”
Davis hopes construction of the new building can start in late-2020. Davis says the new building could serve a dual role as an evacuation shelter or staging area for emergency response teams. “The maintenance facility will be large enough to hold a fire truck or other emergency vehicles during a disaster situation,” he added.