Residents in Cochranton and Cambridge Springs are going to have access to regular bus service to and from Meadville from Crawford Area Transportation Authority, beginning Nov. 1.

CATA is expanding regular service connecting Meadville to Cochranton and Cambridge Springs two days per week — Tuesdays and Thursdays — on a trial basis. The bus will make three trips each day to and from each community.

Public meetings have been set by CATA during the next two weeks to get input from Cochranton and Cambridge Springs residents and to answer questions.

The meetings are at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Cambridge Springs Borough Building, 161 Carringer St., and 5:30 p.m. Oct. 14 at Cochranton Area Public Library, 107 W. Pine St.

"We have some draft schedules, but we want to make sure we're meeting the needs of each community with times and location of bus stops," said Tim Geibel, CATA's executive director.

CATA has received a $65,000 grant from the Crawford County Human Services Department to offset the cost of operating the service for the first year. Continuation of the service beyond the length of grant funding depends on ridership and usage, Geibel said.

Cambridge Springs and Cochranton are being added on a trial basis due to the success of CATA's life line service routes in other areas of the county. CATA's life line service routes are designed to connect rural areas with medical, recreational and employment services in the larger communities.

In 2018, CATA began lifeline service to Meadville from both Titusville and Conneaut Lake.

"The success of those routes has encouraged us to expand the service to Cochranton and Cambridge Springs," Geibel said. "This life line service will benefit people residing in the smaller communities who may have no other way to access services and opportunities in Meadville."

The cost of a one-way trip on either the Cochranton or Cambridge Springs routes is $2 for an adult; $1 for a child ages 6 to 17; and free for children 5 and younger, seniors age 65 or older with senior ID card, and Allegheny College students with valid Allegheny College student ID.

Keith Gushard can be reached at 724-6370 or by email at kgushard@meadvilletribune.com.

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