Airport, CATS to start remote shuttle busing to ease congestion

Charlotte Douglas International Airport and the Charlotte Area Transit System are launching two new remote bus routes next week that are intended to help ease congestion at the airport this summer.

The new buses will ferry people to the terminal from remote lots that are miles from the airport. The northern Route 590 Airport Connector will pick riders up at the CATS park-and-ride lot at Northlake Mall, and Route 591 will pick up people from the Lynx Blue Line park-and-ride lots at the Archdale, Tyvola and Woodlawn stations.

Both routes will run every half hour from 5 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week. But there’s a catch: No overnight parking will be allowed at park-and-ride lots.

“This service is designed to primarily accommodate airport employees and travelers who are dropped off at the bus stop,” city officials wrote in a memo Wednesday describing the plan. One-way fare will start at $2.75, but will rise to $3 on July 1.

Charlotte Douglas has been wrestling with a lack of parking this summer, in part because the airport’s new hourly parking decks in front of the terminal won’t be open until November. Charlotte Douglas is also in the midst of redoing its entire entrance road system, adding to congestion. And the airport is replacing its aging fleet of shuttle buses, many of which were broken down.

For more details, go to the CATS website at ridetransit.org.