HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Capital Area Transit is offering a new bus service that will connect workers and job seekers to major employers in the Carlisle area.
The new CAT route will connect Steelton and Harrisburg’s Uptown, Midtown and Allison Hill neighborhoods to the Allen Road warehouses to help people like Howard West, who was unable to accept a job at the Amazon warehouse because he didn’t have reliable transportation.
“I was like I don’t know, but I want the job,” West said.
Amazon offered a carpool program for dozens of employees at a single pick-up and drop-off location during the holiday season when logistics is at an annual high, but the transportation expires at the end of the holiday season.
“The season is going to stop, so that mean the buses stop,” West said. “People are still going to be hired to work, but they got to find a way there. And this is where they’re crying out. People say, ‘Oh, I gotta job, but I want it to be permanent,’ so they were like how are you going to get here?”
CAT, the City of Harrisburg, and the Borough of Carlisle developed the new bus route to save the jobs of hundreds of people with no way to get to work. Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse and Carlisle Mayor Tim Scott said the new route would help improve local economies for both areas.
“This is going to enhance an already great service,” Scott said, “strengthen ties between Harrisburg and communities on the West Shore.”
CAT said a single adult fare is $1.75 with monthly passes starting at $49. Allen Road employers are offering rider discounts or purchasing rides for qualifying employees. CAT general manager Bill Jones said Amazon purchased 50 monthly passes for employees.
Jones said he expects roughly around 200 riders to use the new route.
The route has two run times in the morning and two run times in the evening. West said the bus route has saved his and other people’s jobs.
“Now that CAT got involved, people that need to get there don’t have to worry about how they can get there,” he said.