Stimulus dollars at work in Charleston transportation

Transportation Authorities in Columbia, Charleston and Greenville have spent time mapping out plans for the portions each system will recieve in federal stimulus dollars. Charleston’s transportation system, CARTA, reached an agreement Thursday.
The Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority, known as CARTA, has reached an agreement on what the board has decided, in a 10-8 vote, to do with $6.48 million portion of the federal stimulus package. Board Chairman Patterson Smith explains.
“The board voted to affirm the decision made on February 23rd, which is to use the money for repairing, some maintenance repairs on our facility on Leeds Avenue, the CARTA bus maintenance facility, to um, to build 30 new bus shelters around the community and to purchase some buses to help replace our 1996 buses that came from the Atlanta Olympics,” says Smith.
The other option the board looked at was to place the money into the Intermodal Transportation Center that is a 30-acre transportation hub that would serve Amtrak, buses, area taxis and shuttle services to and from the Charleston International Airport. That option was declined.
Now, Smith says the board will present the agreement to the Federal Transit Administration and a decision should be made within six months. Columbia has $5.4 million and plans to buy five to seven new buses and Greenville has $3 million with plans to replace eight buses.