CHARLOTTE – The LYNX Silver Line is no longer a light rail project extending from Uptown Charlotte to Matthews. The Charlotte Area Transit System is exploring the idea of extending the project into Union and Gaston counties.
Jason Lawrence, a senior planner with CATS, said during a recent Facebook Live chat that the current recommendation for the Silver Line is a 26-mile light rail service running from Belmont to Matthews – and potentially Stallings.
He cited interest from Union County communities.
Stallings leaders adopted a resolution Jan. 28 supporting the extension of the LYNX Silver Line into their town.
Councilwoman Lynda Paxton said during that meeting that town representatives met with CATS CEO John Lewis in July to express interest in the Silver Line, which is slated to end at Central Piedmont Community College’s Levine Campus in Matthews. That’s not far from the site of a future Atrium Health hospital in Stallings.
“Hopefully, if we continue to show interest in this project, we can get it extended down the corridor to Matthews-Indian Trial Road and connect it maybe with the hospital,” Paxton said.
Councilwoman Shawna Steele called support of the resolution “a no-brainer.”
When asked in the Facebook Live chat what Union County has to do to be included in the Silver Line, Lawrence replied that towns have already approached CATS about working together.
The Metropolitan Transit Commission, which oversees CATS, approved the idea in February of exploring options to extend the Silver Line into Stallings. CATS has also been awarded a federal grant to look at the transit-oriented development potential from Indian Trail to Gastonia, Lawrence said.
Lawrence said the goal was to complete the project by 2030, but CATS would need to start on the design work, which would lead to an environmental document. Once that’s obtained, it would need local, state and federal funding.
He said CATS will begin public outreach as it looks at potential light rail stations along the Silver Line.
The resolution approved by Stallings notes that serving three counties could enable the project to become eligible for increased funding opportunities.