The James E. Clyburn University Transportation Center Awarded Grant to Conduct Feasibility Study

Monday, June 22, 2009

The James E. Clyburn University Transportation Center (JECUTC) at SC State has been awarded a $48,000 grant from Senior Options, Inc., a senior care facility based out of Clinton, S.C. The grant will be used to conduct a transportation feasibility study for Laurens County. The Senior Options, Inc. grant was made possible through funds from the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT)-Mass Transit Division.

The study will investigate the feasibility of providing public transit services in Laurens County, S.C. The main purposes are to determine the need and design of a transit system, and to prepare supporting documents and data for obtaining funding from federal and local governments.

In 2007, the JECUTC was awarded a $50,000 grant to conduct a transportation feasibility study for Orangeburg/Calhoun Counties Transit System.

“Our first feasibility transportation study was very successful and we are currently preparing to enter into the second phase of that project,” said Dr. Reinhart Brown, interim executive director for the JECUTC. “As we prepare to begin the study in Laurens County, I believe our findings will be comparable to our first as these counties share many similarities,” he continued.

Demographics, relevant socioeconomic factors, as well as existing transit service will be reviewed during the study in Laurens County. Once implemented, the public transit service will provide citizens with economic and environmental benefits, an increased quality of life, and fuel cost savings.

Through the study, transit demand will be estimated. Elements include anticipated demand for service, frequency of need, and the potential estimate of trips by categories such as work-related, medical, and shopping. Survey instruments will be keenly developed and designed to solicit input from the community. These methods include the forwarding of brief surveys to businesses, students, and residents.

Brown and Lamar Tisdale, technology transfer and training coordinator, serve as co-principal investigators for the grant. Dr. Tom Whitney, professor of civil and mechanical engineering at SC State, serves as grant administrator.

For more information on the Laurens County Transportation Feasibility Study, contact Lamar Tisdale at (803) 536-4532 or ltisdale@scsu.edu.