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08/26/2013
Hudson Valley Community College and CDTA Launch Universal Access Program and Expanded Service to Troy Campus

MEDIA CONTACT: Dennis Kennedy (518) 629-8071, d.kennedy1@hvcc.edu
Margo Janack, CDTA, 518-437-6842, margoj@cdta.org
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Monday, Aug. 26, 2013

Rensselaer County Executive Kathy Jimino, Chairman of the Rensselaer County Legislature Martin Reid and City of Troy Mayor Lou Rosamilia join college and CDTA leaders to announce universal access to CDTA travel routes for Hudson Valley students.
Rensselaer County Executive Kathy Jimino, Chairman of the Rensselaer County Legislature Martin Reid and City of Troy Mayor Lou Rosamilia join college and CDTA leaders to announce universal access to CDTA travel routes for Hudson Valley students.

The Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) and Hudson Valley Community College today launched a new universal access transportation partnership beginning on the first day of classes, August 26, 2013. The agreement covers two academic years and allows Hudson Valley students to use their student ID to access the entire CDTA route network including STAR and the Northway Xpress commuter service.

CDTA and Hudson Valley started promoting the program’s benefits to students in January through bus and shelter advertising, social media, direct mail, on campus signage, events and orientation activities. As a result, boardings at the college bus terminal increased nearly 25 percent during the first six months of this year. A new video highlighting these new transportation services can be seen at www.hvcc.edu/cdta.

Hudson Valley President Drew Matonak said, “Our partnership with CDTA makes perfect sense on many levels. It offers students greater access to Hudson Valley’s Troy campus, extension sites in Albany and Malta, and several off-campus locations. Nine of ten Hudson Valley students live within the area serviced by CDTA, and ridership grows every semester. Thousands of students will benefit from the universal access program which provides added value, convenience and mobility.”

Route #224 (Albany-Troy via I-90 & I-787) and seven day per week service on Route #85 (Waterford-Troy) provide direct connections to Hudson Valley’s main campus. Several other bus routes provide additional, easy connections. Service on Route #224 has been expanded to prepare for the increased student ridership with mid-day service extending to 30 minutes during the student ridership peak time hours between 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. A variety of CDTA routes travel to Hudson Valley’s 11 education sites around the region.

“We are excited to partner with Hudson Valley Community College to provide students with unlimited rides to connect them to their classes, to jobs, and destinations across the region,” said CDTA Chairman David M. Stackrow. “We have expanded service to the Troy campus to address the increased ridership typically seen in the first year of our universal access arrangements.”

The college's Faculty Student Association has offered reduced fare CDTA bus tickets since the 2001. More than 3,000 reduced fare tickets were sold on campus this past year. Several campus organizations partnered to advance universal access to CDTA busing at the college. Hudson Valley’s Environmental Sustainability Committee identified a need for transportation services and sought support for the program through a student-driven advocacy campaign. The college's Student Senate, Academic Senate and Faculty Student Association voted to approve new initiative.

Hudson Valley Community College is one of the largest partners in CDTA’s universal access program that offers discounted wholesale contracts based on a bulk number of rides. Currently CDTA works with over a dozen colleges and businesses to provide unlimited access for students and employees and is working to expand its program for companies and organizations interested in growing their business and providing their employees with convenient and affordable access to jobs as an effective recruitment and retention tool.

Hudson Valley is the second largest higher education institution in the Capital Region, enrolling more than 13,250 students in 75 academic programs. CDTA has similar universal access partnerships with the University of Albany, RPI, the College of Saint Rose, Russell Sage, Skidmore College, Schenectady County Community College, Branford Hall Career Institute, Siena College, and the Albany College of Pharmacy. Universal access arrangements constitute 20 percent of CDTA’s ridership. Last year, CDTA reached 15.5 million annual boardings, a record ridership since the early 1980’s and expects to hit over 16 million this year.

To learn more about HVCC’s new transportation partnership, visit www.hvcc.edu. For information on CDTA services, visit www.cdta.org.

The Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) was created in 1970 by the New York State Legislature, as a public benefit corporation, to provide regional transportation services by rail, bus, water and air. Today, CDTA is the premier mobility provider in the Capital Region, operating regular route bus service, shuttle systems and paratransit services. CDTA owns and operates the Rensselaer Rail and Saratoga Springs Train Stations. CDTA also operates the Northway Commuter Service between Saratoga County and downtown Albany. Today, over 640 people work at CDTA to deliver a transit system that serves more than 800,000 people who live and work at CDTA, transporting more than 50,000 customers each weekday.

Founded in 1953, Hudson Valley Community College offers more than 70 degree and certificate programs in four schools: Business; Engineering and Industrial Technologies; Health Science; and Liberal Arts and Sciences; and an Educational Opportunity Center for academic and career training. One of 30 community colleges in the State University of New York system, it has an enrollment of more than 13,250 students, and is known as a leader in distance learning initiatives and workforce training. Hudson Valley has more than 75,000 alumni.