Charlotte opens light rail extension

Written by David Briginshaw, Consulting Editor, International Railway Journal
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Charlotte (N.C.) Area Transit System (CATS) opened an extension to its 9.3-mile Lynx Blue Line light rail line on March 16.

 The extension runs northeast from 7th Street station in the city center through the North Davidson (NoDA) and University areas to terminate at the University of North Carolina Charlotte campus. The extension has 11 stations, four of which have park-and-ride facilities providing a total of 3100 parking spaces.

The Blue Line extension is designed to be operated by three-car Siemens Avanto S70 LRVs running at 7.5-minute intervals initially and is expected to transport more than 25,000 passengers per day.

The extension was the first addition to the initial 9.6-mile CATS LRT line, also known as the CATS Blue Line, which opened in November 2007, and came shortly after the city resolved a dispute over a similar streetcar extension issue.
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