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Data Dashboard: Funding for Public Transit Organizations


Funding for Public Transit Organizations

Trend at a Glance

At last count


Current Through

December 2012



What does this measure?

Funding for public transportation is the actual amount spent on public transportation service providers in Wake County. Expenditures include both operating and capital dollars by local, state and federal governments. Service providers in Wake County are Capital Area Transit (CAT), Cary Transit (C-Tran), North Carolina State University Transportation (NCSU Wolfline), and Triangle Transit Authority (TTA). Public transit users subsidize bus operations in the form of bus fares; but transit providers depend upon a mix of local funds and federal and state aid to provide transit services. To maintain and improve operations, public transportation agencies must maintain a sustainable and equitable balance between these funding sources. Changes to local funding for public transportation may be due to a combination of factors, such as the cost of public transportation services, changes in fare or fare revenue, changes to federal and/or state assistance, and expansion of bus services.

How is Wake County performing?

Local funding for public transportation has increased in recent years due to new and expanded bus routes and increasing cost of service. Historically, local public transportation service providers have funded approximately 16% of capital projects (route expansion, fleet expansion, etc.) while the remaining 84% are funded through federal and state grants/assistance. For operating costs, local agencies tend to fund a higher share, nearly 70%, with the balance provided through performance-based federal programs and state grants.

Did you know?

In 2012, fare revenues accounted for about 14% of public transit operating costs.

Data Source

Data Considerations

Triangle Transit also provides service to Durham and Orange counties, so numbers reported below also include funds provided by those governments. NCSU Wolfline is funded largely by student fees, which are categorized here as a local funding source.

Charts & Maps


Data is updated:

Data is updated annually on or around September 15 by Wake County Planning, Development and Inspections, subject to data being available from the National Transit Database, American Public Transportation Association and each service provider.

Related Resources


Not applicable.


Created at 1/3/2014 3:48 PM by Lori K. Neumeier
Last modified at 12/15/2014 10:42 AM by Stephen R. Walston