Categories
News Tyrone Daily Herald Archives

CATA’s RideShare program looking for Tyrone residents who work in Centre Region

As of October 1, the Centre Area Transportation Authority (CATA) has expanded its \”family of public transportation services\” by introducing vanpools to the RideShare program, CATA\’s carpool matching service.
Since RideShare\’s beginning in 1999, the program has brought together people traveling from or through the same communities to work in the Centre Region, helping people establish carpools.
Now with CATA\’s new creation, the community-wide vanpool service, Penn State University and CATA have agreed to transition six existing faculty/staff vanpools to this new initiative. For almost 20 years Penn State has made vans available to groups of university employees commuting long distances, which includes Tyrone area residents who may work at Penn State and the Centre Region.
In a recent RideShare survey of current participants, there is additional interest from the Altoona, Lewistown, Lock Haven, Philipsburg/Houtzdale, Penns Valley, Tyrone and Clearfield areas. A vanpool consists of 7-12 participants, which includes a volunteer driver.
Within these groups, the RideShare program presently only has enough interest to partially fill a vanpool. Anyone interested in joining a vanpool in the Tyrone area can register with the RideShare program.
RideShare Coordinator, Terri Quici, stated, \”We currently have six vanpools coming from Lewistown, Tyrone and Philipsburg areas. The most popular question is how much will joining a vanpool cost me? Currently, the fares range from $68 – $82 per month.\”
Fares are determined by two factors: a base rate and a per mile rate, so fares do fluctuate. But, the RideShare fares seem to be much cheaper than what the rising price of gas and every day travel affords.
CATA uses a computerized matching program to match individuals from the surrounding communities who are the same commute. Individuals are asked to provide information about where they live, where they work, their work schedule, and preferences such as drive only or smoking/non-smoking. Once this information is registered, the participant receives a \”Match List\” which is a list of those who match the same criteria as the registrant.
There is no obligation to use the information provided. The registrant can contact anyone on the list to ask questions, create their own carpool or join someone else\’s. Information is kept confidential.
CATA also offers a Guaranteed Ride Home to those who are registered in the RideShare program and participate in a carpool or vanpool. The GRH program provides a ride home (up to four per year) in cases of emergency such as illness, workplace shut-down, or unscheduled and required overtime. RideShare participants are not left stranded when there is an emergency.
\”The RideShare program has proven itself to be a great success,\” noted Quici. \”Today, the RideShare participant list includes over 500 individuals and more than 200 active carpools, coming into the State College area from eleven counties throughout central Pennsylvania.\”
Carpooling and vanpooling are cost-effective alternatives for long-distance commuters, who can enjoy the savings and convenience of sharing a ride to work.
Persons interested in participating in a car-or vanpool may self register on the CATA website, www.catabus.com.
For more information on the RideShare program, visit the CATA website or contact Terri Quici, CATA RideShare Coordinator, at (814) 238-CATA (2282) ext. 134 or rideshare@catabus.com.