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Updated: 5:57 p.m. Thursday, April 21, 2011 | Posted: 3:28 p.m. Thursday, April 21, 2011
CHARLOTTE, N.C. —
The Charlotte-Area Transit System unveiled advertising on trains on Thursday, and the expanded efforts couldn't come at a better time.
SLIDESHOW: CATS New Advertising Effort
“It helps us merge our costs, especially with rising fuel prices,” said Olaf Kinard, CATS marketing and communication manager.
Channel 9 first reported on new ads on buses in February, after spotting large signs saying, “Your ad goes here.”
CATS has now approved a contract for Titan Outdoor to sell and manage the program. The company guaranteed CATS a minimum of $5 million over the next five years.
That extra money will go into the operating budget, so CATS likely won't have to increase fares.
That’s something riders like Sam Price were glad to hear.
“That would definitely help to expand the system,” Price said.
CATS removed ads from buses in 2000 because it wasn't cost-effective. But now, Kinard said, more national advertisers are looking at Charlotte.
“We also knew that the size of our fleet -- our assets that could accept ads -- would grow over the next decade,” he said.
Kinard said CATS has grown from about 120 buses to more than 330 buses. Plus, it added the LYNX Blue Line.
Ads start at $300 a month. CATS officials said if the economy continues to improve, they could make up to $2.5 million a year in advertising.
More Information: CATSLYNX Blue Line
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