This week in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, our very own Nelson Reveley writes about the importance of a metro-wide transit system:
Furthermore, from a jurisdictional and regional perspective, embracing this kind of frequent transit as a core piece of civic infrastructure would carry key benefits. It would offer to households without a car (more than 25,500 across Metro Richmond) literal lifelines to jobs, services and opportunities spread throughout the metro area. It would enable the kind of mixed-use, pedestrian and bike-friendly development that millennials and seniors alike find enormously appealing — development that could rise generatively in place of mid-to-late 20th century parking lots that sit upon so much land. And unlike driverless cars, which will be excellent additions to how we move about but not a transportation panacea, including transit would help keep congestion low, crucial for us as we gain an estimated 400,000 neighbors by 2040.
The opportunity for enhanced access via transit awaits us, Metro Richmond. Carpe diem!
If you haven't yet filled out the Richmond Transit Network Plan survey, please do so now! It's imperative that the planners have enough citizen feedback to design the appropriate transit network for Richmond. The more feedback they have the easier it will be to move from concept, to recommendation, to Council approval, to implementation. So fill that thing out now!
Around the region
Virginia Currents put together a 10-minute story about what it's like to ride the bus and about the changes coming to GRTC. Listen all the way to the end for a shoutout to a certain local rapid transit advocacy group!
The Mayorathon continues to creep closer and closer! The big night is September 29th, and you can RSVP and learn more on what each candidate thinks about transit-related issues over on Richmond Magazine's website.
Virginia college students! If you're stoked on transportation, check out the 2016 Governor's Transportation Conference. This year they've got a Shark Tank-like contest for folks with innovative transportation ideas. If your idea pleases the sharks, you could win $15,000.
Columbus had their Smart City Challenge kickoff meeting—that's the $40 milllion grant that Richmond applied for but did not win. With that money, Columbus has "proposed to deploy three electric self-driving shuttles to link a new bus rapid transit center to a retail district." That sounds wonderful.
Peter Fassbender, who's in charge of Vancouver's transportation authority, wants the area's mayors to get on the same page about funding for a regional transit expansion plan. In fact, he told them, "What they need to do, quite honestly, is to suck it up and to get on with phase one." Ha! That's one way to do regionalism.