Dec 30, 2016

CLEVELAND -- Here is a list of highlights of 2016 for the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA).

Strong Financial Management

Finished 2016 approximately $16.3 million better than budget, with an ending balance of $23 million.

Completed a successful “clean” audit. Received the Auditor of State’s Award with Distinction.

Completed a successful FTA Triennial Review.

Placed orders for 43 additional CNG buses. When they begin service, they will further reduce fuel costs and improve service reliability.

Received Government Finance Officers Association’s Award for Certificate of Achievement for Excellence for 28th consecutive year.

Created a sound plan to implement service restructuring and fare increase, holding 16 public hearings to actively listen to customers. Made adjustments that addressed many of their concerns, while still achieving financial goals.

Negotiated a new transit advertising contract that guarantees an additional $1.5 million above 2016 record levels during the five-year agreement.

Received the approval for advertising in bus shelters by City of Cleveland. This will generate additional needed revenue for RTA.

Negotiated the sale of excess property on the Triskett Rapid Station site for the construction and operation of a transit-oriented Horizon Child Care Center.

Facilitated receipt of ODOT’s $6 million grant for 12 new trolleys that were ordered, delivered and scheduled into service in time for the Republican National Convention (RNC).

RTA’s Role in RNC’s Success

Recognized as a critical regional asset that was significant to the site-selection decision to host the Republican National Convention (RNC).

Provided outstanding service to 50,000 national delegates, 15,000 visiting media and the community during the RNC.

Worked with the City to complete public art installations along the Red Line from the Airport to Downtown and beyond, in time for the RNC.

Completed the total replacement of the four escalators in Tower City prior to the RNC.

Received US Department of Defense award in recognition of RTA’s emergency transportation plan and ongoing support during the RNC.

Completed the Woodhill Service Quality office prior to the RNC, which provided backup computers and radio communication capability in the event of an evacuation of the Integrated Command Center (ICC) at the Main Office.

Transit Funding Advocacy

Worked with major influencers to promote increased funding for RTA and address funding challenges related to the Medicaid Sales Tax issue.

Held a successful advocacy event for National Infrastructure Week, highlighting the need for additional investments in our rail infrastructure.

Worked with the Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) and the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) to highlight need for greater transit funding as a major component of their legislative agendas.

Awarded discretionary funding from ODOT for bus replacements and rail track reconstruction work.

Established a working relationship with Clevelanders for Public Transit, meeting quarterly, to assist in advocacy efforts.

Initiated partnership with Board of Developmental Disabilities for Paratransit customers

Customer Security and Safety

Received two FTA demonstration grants to enhance pedestrian safety.

Recorded 27 percent decrease in rail incidents requiring investigations.

Implemented Rail System Awareness Days to increase safety/knowledge of rail.

Published the Roadway Worker Protection manual.

Published the Continuity of Operations Plan, which outlines how to maintain RTA operations after a disaster.

Completed FTA safety drill for smoke in the Airport tunnel.

Successfully led ODOT State Safety Oversight training for rail.

Recorded outstanding achievements by Transit Police who:

  • Realized a significant drop in serious crimes, continuing a three-year trend.
  • Worked around-the-clock to provide outstanding safety and security to record numbers during the Cavaliers and Indians championship runs.
  • Were recognized by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies for their professionalism, hard work and dedicated service during the RNC.

Customer Service

Provided extended service to Cavalier fans during the playoffs.

Received accolades from customers, civic partners and the media for outstanding service during Cavs’ parade day, the highest known ridership day in RTA history

Served Cleveland Indians fans during an outstanding MLB regular season, playoff games and the World Series.

Launched a Mobile Ticketing pilot program, which proved to be a very valuable resource during the RNC and the baseball post-season events.

Significantly improved “Real Time” customer information through the “Transit App”.

Implemented enhancements to Paratransit operations, adding new telephone system, revising the “no show” policy, and now serving customers within a 30-minute window.

Infrastructure Improvements

Opened the modernized and ADA-compliant Warrensville Station on the Green Line.

Continued construction of the redesigned and ADA-compliant Brookpark Station on the Red Line.

Began construction and modernization of ADA-compliant Lee Road Station on the Green Line.

Constructed an ADA-compliant temporary rail station on Track 7. It was used during the Track 8 construction, and will be in used again during Track 10 and 13 reconstruction projects in Tower City.

Completed the reconstruction of Tower City’s Track 8, without rail service interruptions.

Began design for the East 34th Street Station (Red, Blue & Green Lines) and the East 116th Blue and Green Line Stations to assure ADA compliance.

 Worked with ODOT officials and received their commitment to contract and fund 80 percent of the project cost to enlarge the East 105th Street Red Line Station as part of the Opportunity Corridor project.

Funded and began construction on enhanced pedestrian access to the Little Italy-University Circle Station. A long-time high priority for the community, this project modernizes and illuminates the sidewalk, walls and access that are beneath several railroad bridges.

Participated in regional efforts to explore improvements to East 93rd-East 105th Street Corridor.

Strategic Initiatives

Submitted the second application for The Performance Excellence (Baldrige Award) initiative in support of process improvements and organizational excellence.

Completed the 2016-18 Strategic Planning cycle.

Continued efforts with Environmental & Sustainability Management System (ESMS) to support sustainability strategies and reduce costs.

Maintained ISO certification for the Central Bus Maintenance Facility, and completed nearly 45 percent ISO 14001 certification at both the Triskett and Hayden facilities to meet 2015 requirements.

Completed first Annual Sustainability Report per Global Reporting Initiative G4 Core Standard Guidelines.

Awards and Recognitions

Awarded the Commission on Economic Inclusion’s Commission 50 Award, as well as the Workforce Diversity Award.

Recognized the re-appointment of CEO Joe Calabrese by the US Department of Transportation’s Secretary Anthony Foxx to the USDOT Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) Advisory Committee.

Graduated Public Transit Management Academy from CSU, where 30 individuals from multiple levels within the organization graduated and completed important projects to better propel RTA into the future.

Received the Three-Star Ohio Green Fleet Award from Clean Fuels Ohio for work to improve air quality and health, reduce pollution and strengthen Ohio’s economy.