Two midstate transit companies propose new merger

Ioannis Pashakis//December 22, 2020

Two midstate transit companies propose new merger

Ioannis Pashakis//December 22, 2020

Regional transportation authorities Rabbittransit and Capital Area Transit announced plans to merge to create one midstate transportation authority.

York-based Rabbittransit and Harrisburg-based Capital Area Transit (CAT) said on Tuesday that they are ironing out plans to merge into a single entity to be called the Susquehanna Regional Transportation Authority.

The two companies wrote in a press release that the new entity would allow for increased levels of mobility and result in improved efficiencies for operation.

The region would also see enhanced services such as a single fare payment system, expanded call center hours, improved connections to large regional employers and enhanced services to regional health care programs and between campuses for students.

The new single organization would cover 11 counties and be overseen by one board.

“Ultimately, it’s about advancing mobility for the region,” said Richard Farr, executive director of Rabbittransit, who has also been managing CAT since February, 2018. “In many ways, we are functioning as one system now. The two transit agencies have been working cooperatively for nearly three years and we are already seeing benefits.”

The merger is expected to help CAT, which has been struggling with finances according to Farr, avoid a proposed 40% reduction to its services.

As the Susquehanna Regional Transportation Authority, the companies said that they plan to keep their current bus drivers and mechanics employed.

Monica Young, management commonucations specialist to the executive director at Rabbittransit, said that the merger will be a minimal cost to the two companies and will include mostly legal feeds related to drafting documents.

The two authorities will be holding public hearings on the proposal early next year and will then look to adopt resolutions to move forward on the deal.