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Welcome to CATA

Driving mobility solutions for the Capital City region since 1972, the Capital Area Transportation Authority was formed under Act 55 (Public Act of Michigan 1963). The Authority's governmental membership comprises the cities of Lansing and East Lansing, and the townships of Delhi, Lansing and Meridian.

Our Mission 

To meet the mobility needs of our region by providing innovative solutions in partnership with the communities we serve.

Our Vision 

CATA will ensure public trust by re-imagining regional mobility challenges and how we better engage those we serve.

Our Values 

  • CATA is committed to transparency in action, which inherently fosters trust and innovation.
  • We will approach community partners, customers and employees in the spirit of cooperation
  • CATA is committed to providing a safe experience for our customers, employees and the public we serve.
  • CATA seeks to implement sustainable solutions as stewards of the community we serve; the planet and its finite resources.
  • Professionalism and integrity drive CATA's actions and decisions.
  • Accountability and the desire to always do the right thing serve as our guiding compass.

Our Goals 

Goal No. 1: Regional Mobility - Facilitate seamless and innovative multimodal transportation solutions throughout the tri-county area.

Goal No. 2: Customer Experience Excellence - Employ best practices that lead to new and returning customers.

Goal No. 3: Organizational Strength - Promote organization-wide efficiency and effectiveness. Lead by example toward continuous improvement.

Goal No. 4: Community Partnership - Exhibit responsible leadership through community engagement and public service.

Goal No. 5: Dynamic Workplace - Create a meaningful workplace that engages, empowers and values its employees.

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CATA's leadership philosophy is based on service to our community. The Board of Directors establishes policy, our executive staff oversees planning and management, LAC representatives advise CATA on senior and disability issues, and CATA bus operators and mechanics are represented by the ATU Local No. 1039.

CATA Facts


FY 2023 Ridership

At its founding in 1972, CATA had seven fixed routes and delivered 732,609 total trips systemwide. In fiscal 2019, we delivered 11,049,317 annual trips – the agency’s strongest ridership growth since fiscal 2007. In March 2020 the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in dramatic ridership declines. For a brief period, fixed-route rides were suspended, and curb-to-curb, demand-response rides were reserved for first responders and those seeking life-sustaining health care and services. Ridership totaled 7,306,550 for fiscal 2020. At the peak of the pandemic In fiscal 2021, CATA delivered 3,030,644 trips. In fiscal 2022, ridership was recorded at 5,399,227 trips systemwide – a healthy rebound. Fiscal 2023 concluded with a remarkable 41.4 percent growth in ridership which translated to an additional 2.2 million trips and an overall total of 7.63 million rides for the year.

CATA currently operates 33 fixed routes and various paratransit services. A snapshot of our ridership follows:

  FY 2020 FY 2021 FY 2022 FY 2023
Total Fixed Route 6,975,625 2,785,826 5,094,945 7,310,487
Total Paratransit 330,925 244,818 304,282 323,390
TOTAL 7,306,550 3,030,644 5,399,227 7,633,877



Fiscal 2023 Budgeted Operating Revenue:

  • 40.5% Local funding
  • 26.5% State funding
  • 22.7% Federal funding
  • 10.3% Fares and other revenues

Service Area

CATA provides a variety of public transportation services in the Greater Lansing and outlying areas. The 559 square-mile service area spans all of Ingham County and extends into portions of Eaton County (Delta Township) and Clinton County.


CATA’s workforce comprises 443 employees*:

  • 289 are bus operators who are members of the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local No. 1039
  • 47 are Maintenance employees who also belong to ATU Local No. 1039 – namely mechanics and mechanic support staff
  • 107 are administrative personnel


*As of Oct. 1, 2024

Awards & Community


Metro Magazine ranked CATA in its “Ten Best Places to Work in Transit” in the October 2008 issue. The family-like culture, open door policy, recognition of hard work and employee pride were sited as some of the agency’s outstanding attributes.

In 2007, CATA was awarded the Outstanding Public Transportation System Achievement Award by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). This award honors one public transportation system in North America each year, which has demonstrated outstanding achievement in efficiency and effectiveness. Systems are judged on their performance over a 3-year period. CATA is one of the few systems that are a two-time winner of this award. CATA first received the award in 1991.

Community Involvement

Each year, CATA participates in community–sponsored events such as:

  • Capital Area United Way
  • Community Connect
  • East Lansing Art Festival
  • Holiday Parades
  • Ingham ISD Transition Fair
  • Lansing Jaycees Stuff the Bus
  • Operation Santa
  • Safety Council Patrol Picnic
  • Silver Bells in the City
  • Touch-a-Truck
  • Trick-or-Treat on the Square

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