Lancaster Transit Agency Taking Driver’s Seat For BARTA

Picture 565Lancaster County‘s transit organization will manage BARTA for at least the next six months, officials with both groups said Monday.

The agencies will continue to operate separately but Lancaster’s Red Rose Transit Authority will share its executive leadership with BARTA.

David W. Kilmer, Red Rose executive director, will lead both organizations, dividing his time between Reading and Lancaster.

The move comes as BARTA works to restructure its leadership following the death last month of Dennis D. Louwerse, its longtime executive director. Managers have been keeping projects and operations moving with oversight from the agency’s board of directors.

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Death Leaves BARTA With Big Hole To Fill

English: BARTA bus in downtown Reading, Pennsy...

English: BARTA bus in downtown Reading, Pennsylvania, July 2007. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

BARTA will send off the first bus from its restored Franklin Street Station in Monday, taking the final step in realizing its dream of reopening the once-abandoned city transportation hub.

But agency officials who have been scrambling to start the new Reading-Lebanon route will have something else on their minds: the man whose vision for the station started it all.

Dennis D. Louwerse, BARTA’s longtime executive director, died Thursday night from complications related to a respiratory infection, according to agency officials.  He was 68.

He took the helm of the then-financially troubled bus agency 30 years ago and transformed it into an organization that’s recognized in the national transportation industry.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=509443