Atlanta Must Get Moving on Public Transit.. Will It?

There’s a great piece in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on the need for Atlanta to get moving on better public transit and catch up to other cities it was once leading on this topic. Of course, Atlanta’s low density is one of the big problems hindering public transit use and efficiency, but there are solutions to that and transportation planning goes hand in hand with land use planning these days. The Atlanta Regional Transportation Roundtable is now working on transportation improvement project proposals for voters to choose from in 2012 and it looks like it is going to put a strong emphasis on transit. Here’s the intro to the piece:

The importance of public transit was brought home once again in Atlanta during the recent storm. An anesthesiologist was able to get to his job at Northside Hospital. A staff person made it to CNN to help put news on the air. And many other employees in essential positions in Atlanta were able to be on the job because MARTA trains were still running in a city whose roads were paralyzed with ice.

In a major economic center such as ours, transportation alternatives are a necessity, and transit must be high on the list of transportation improvement projects that the Atlanta Regional Transportation Roundtable develops for voters to consider in August 2012. The Atlanta roundtable is one of 12 throughout Georgia established by the Transportation Investment Act of 2010 (HB 277), which the Georgia General Assembly passed to allow a referendum on a 10-year, 1-cent sales tax for transportation improvements. At stake is Atlanta’s and Georgia’s ability to maintain a competitive business environment and quality of life for residents.

Atlanta has a world-class airport. Atlanta also was once a leader in public transit in the 1970s and ’80s when MARTA was among the first of the new urban passenger rail systems. Today, Charlotte, Dallas, Houston, Phoenix and other cities are investing billions of dollars in public transit while Atlanta is lagging behind….

Read more here: A blueprint to get Atlanta moving.

Related Stories:
1. Public Transportation Saves U.S. 785 Million Hours a Year
2. Save $9,656 a Year, Ride Public Transit

Photo Credit: Kay Gaensler

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