City of Lansing, CATA reach agreement with Frandor management to continue bus service
Updated on September 28 at 6:09 p.m. ET
Bus service in Lansing’s Frandor Shopping Center will continue.
That’s after the mall’s ownership company had said it would be terminating its contract with the Capital Area Transportation Authority.
But in a statement released Wednesday, officials with the City of Lansing and CATA say they’ve now reached a compromise with the company to keep service in place.
Frandor ownership representative Patrick Corr says the agreement to retain the bus stops is on a trial basis.
"We are looking forward to continuing our relationship with CATA and appreciate the Lansing Police Department’s partnership in making sure that the Frandor Shopping Center is a welcoming and safe place to work and shop," Corr said in a statement.
Frandor Shopping Center managers had cited unsafe conditions including public intoxication and aggressive panhandling as reasons for removing the stops at the center of Frandor.
"The City of Lansing will continue to provide police assistance and social services as possible," Lansing Mayor Andy Schor said in a statement. "This situation will be revisited by all parties over the next several months."
More than 200 riders per day would have been affected by the cancellation of the routes, according to a CATA spokesperson.
[Original story below]:
The Capital Area Transportation Authority will no longer be making stops inside of Lansing’s Frandor Shopping Center. The mall’s management cites safety concerns at bus shelters.
CATA has received a termination of contract letter from the company that owns the Frandor Shopping Center.
In an email statement, Corr Commercial Real Estate President Patrick Corr says the company has been experiencing issues with public intoxication, aggressive panhandling and public urination near the two bus stops at the center of Frandor.
"We have a fiduciary obligation to our Tenants, customers/employees of the shopping center, provide a safe environment and safe passage to their destination, and to mitigate the issue. These are life-safety issues that cannot be ignored," Corr wrote in the email.
CATA spokesperson Lolo Robison says the bus service is concerned about the removal of the stops.
“Primarily the negative impact it could have on our riders, specifically seniors and persons with disabilities," Robinson said. "There are are no sidewalks leading into that Frandor property and no crosswalks on Michigan, which presented quite a few safety concerns for us."
Robison says they've attempted to reach an agreement with Corr but have been unsuccessful.
"We felt a sense of urgency in terms of communicating to him that the issue of homelessness is a community concern and that we would like him to return to the table with the community to come up with solutions, but really to no avail," she said.
CATA will continue serving the bus stops around Frandor's perimeter and Spec-Tran service will still be available to make stops inside the shopping center. Spec-Tran is CATA’s Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) service for people unable to use its fixed-route system. A one way ride on Spec-Tran costs $2.50, while a one way regular fare ticket on CATA's fixed service route cots $1.25.
Robison says more than 200 riders per day will be affected by the removal of bus service at Frandor.
"There are many services that are viable and vital to the survival of many of the residents, including grocery, pharmacies, food resources, lots of different services that enhance everyday life for the people who utilize them," she said. "And denying access to seniors and people with disabilities is a grave concern."
Corr says in the last 12 months the mall's tenants have called the Lansing Police more than 150 times with concerns.
"When called, the police do not always remove them from the property for the above referenced incidents," he stated in his email. "Also, when violators find out LPD won’t remove them, it emboldens them and word spreads. Usually, the police just let someone get on the bus….and they sometimes return the same day by bus."
As of Tuesday evening, the Lansing Police Department has not responded to a request for comment.
The last day of service at the central Frandor stops is October 16.