Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Seattle: Give me light rail!

Public Transit, and transportation in general, seems to be the number one issue these days. And its know surprise. For decades we invested heavily in roads, while neglecting public transportation and other modes. Our 90-year experiment of single mode transportation has failed. Like all things, diversity is the key for a healthy system. It would really suck to have apples as the only fruit, or beef as the only meet to eat. Likewise, it sucks to have only one viable forum of transportation in most areas. Cities like Portland have it right. They are investing in public transit, cycling, and walking infrastructure; most of which has been largely ignored in North America.

That leads us to today interest facts. Last November, people in the Puget Sound (Seattle) had the change to vote on a $17 billion road and transit page. They voted No. Some people speculated that it was because the ballot measure combined roads and transit. If they were separated, one or both might have passed. Either way Sound Transit, the regional transit authority in Seattle, just did a survey to gauge the hot issues in Puget Sound.

Transportation/Mass Transit (24%), Traffic Congestion (23%), Environment/Pollution (6%), and Road/Highways (5%) were some of the major issues that people on the survey identified. People placed a higher priority on light rail/train expansion over roads and buses.

The survey shows that people are very interested in light rail in the Seattle area. It has been shown time and time again, that light rail improvements are a great way for getting people interested and into transit.

Sound Transit has the whole survey on their website.

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