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Collaboration Meets Innovation to Create a New CATA Bus Stop

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Categories: Blog, Community, Employees

Collaboration and innovative ideas are part of what makes our team so special – especially when they’re least expected. 

Nick Zickefoose, a customer experience representative at CATA, saw a need in the community and set out to fulfill it. 

Using Teamwork and Customer Feedback to Turn an Idea into Reality

A CATA rider contacted Nick suggesting a new bus stop on Route 9 in front of Atlas Meds Pharmacy. “He told me about how a lot of elderly and disabled customers use that particular pharmacy, but they had to walk from the current Route 9 stops to get there – which isn’t always easy for someone depending on their situation,” Nick said. Before a new stop was in place, the walk to Atlas Meds Pharmacy was several blocks. 

“The addition of this stop made sense from a number of angles,” said Kai Christiansen, the CATA Service Planning and Scheduling Manager. 

Kai received an email from Nick with the new bus stop suggestion. “I didn’t want to just let [the] request go unheard as it sounded like it had the potential to help a lot of people,” Nick said. “I remembered being told early in my time at CATA about Kai Christiansen over in planning and he’s incredibly good with these sorts of things.”

CATA Customer Experience Representative Nick Zickefoose

 

Kai was pleasantly surprised when Nick reached out to him and immediately got to work. “The quality of the information which Nick provided to me made my work easy,” Kai said. He noted it was "clear and actionable, making this process very straightforward.”

How a New Bus Stop is Created

The creation of a new CATA bus stop involves communication with stakeholders and configuration to meet customer, property owner and municipal needs. Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance is also important. 

Once the stop has been designed, the building can begin. A contractor is methodically chosen, geolocation is added and a stop number is assigned.

The process to create a new bus stop involves CATA’s planning, facilities and procurement departments. It wouldn’t be possible without a strong and passionate team.

“It is always rewarding to be able to help facilitate the needs of our customers and create transportation solutions that make sense,” Kai said. 

The new stop on Route 9 is now up and running on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in front of Atlas Meds Pharmacy.

CATA bus stop #6081 in front of Atlas Meds Pharmacy

CATA’s priority continues to be meeting the mobility needs of our region. This priority is made possible in part through our dynamic, collaborative workforce. 

To learn more about Nick Zickefoose and the collaborative efforts of his department, click here.

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The Nationwide #SoundTheHorn Campaign

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Categories: Blog, Community, Employees

Traffic lights and cars on Michigan Ave

On the road, horn honks are typically used to alert other drivers or pedestrians. Today, they will be used to say two words: thank you.

At 3 p.m., our operators will honk their horns twice in solidarity with transportation workers nationwide as part of the #SoundTheHorn campaign.

“We proudly sound our horn today in honor of transit workers the world over who are doing their part to contain this tragic pandemic,” said CATA CEO Bradley T. Funkhouser. CATA participated in the original campaign on April 16 and again on May 21.

Operators will sound the horn once to thank healthcare professionals, grocery store clerks, first responders, gas station employees, and other heroes who are performing critically essential work during COVID-19. They will sound the horn a second time to thank transportation workers nationwide for getting these essential workers where they need to go.

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, the dedication and commitment of our own essential workforce has been nothing short of heroic,” Funkhouser said. “Our call takers have fielded tens of thousands of calls. Our operators, mechanics, utilities and facilities personnel are working together to fulfill life-sustaining and medically necessary trips, as well as trips to get critical-infrastructure employees to work, often at great personal risk.”

Searching for your own ways to thank essential workers and spread positivity during COVID-19? Check out a few ideas here.

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Welcome to 2020: A new year of opportunity

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Categories: Blog, Community, Employees

[A CATA Nova bus leaving the garage]

It’s a new year, full of new opportunities to serve our riders and the community.

As we begin this new year -- and new decade -- we want to continue to connect, learn and grow with all of you. With expanding features like USB charging ports on our Nova buses and solar lights at bus stops, we are always striving for improvement. These improvements are made possible through community partnerships and constructive feedback. 

Our partnership with the Capital Area District Libraries could bring Wi-Fi to some of our buses. Our service agreement with Michigan State University will keep on-campus bus services free for years to come.

This year, we will continue using our digital channels as a way for riders to see beyond the busses and buildings of CATA. We are a fleet of strong, driven and inspired people who love this city and all those we serve. 

We want you to meet Craig Frazier and our paratransit department, who are asking “What if?” to open dialogue on how to serve clients better. We want you to hear Ron DeLeon’s story on what it means to serve CATA for 21 years and counting as a bus driver.  

With mindsets and employees like these, the future of CATA is shining brightly. But it can only shine with strong community relationships. So how might we get to know each other better?

Let’s start with a tour. Meet some of the faces and places behind the scenes at CATA.

Since this video was made, we were fortunate to surpass 11 million rides for 2019. Thank you for working with us to make the future of Greater Lansing public transit as promising as ever.

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