County leaders are considering investment in innovative new rapid transit that could transform travel in the county, cutting time spent in traffic, reducing air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, and improving quality of life. But county leaders won't act unless you do -- unless they hear from Montgomery residents that you support the next generation of transit.
Montgomery County is growing fast, and facing some major challenges. In the next 20 years, the county is poised to add approximately 200,000 new residents and over 150,000 new jobs, potentially putting many more cars on the already congested roads. We can’t keep widening roads - it simply isn't working. More and more residents are looking for better options including public transit, telecommuting and living closer to work so they can bike and walk. Now is our moment to act to make fast, reliable, and convenient transit a reality.
Three critical and complementary projects are essential for providing real transit options to avoid traffic and make it easier to get to work: the Purple Line light rail, improvements to Metro, and an innovative new Rapid Transit network connecting many of the county's communities. The proposal for world-class Rapid Transit builds upon successful models in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and cities abroad. Some of its benefits include:
• Speed: Dedicated lanes to decrease travel times and increase reliability, and pre-boarding fare collection to reduce time spent stopped.
• Convenience: Frequent service that minimizes times between vehicles and real-time, visual "next bus" information
• Accessibility: Permanent stations, and level boarding through multiple doors just like Metrorail
• Comfort: Modern vehicles with comfortable interiors, wireless internet and other conveniences.
• Cost: Quick travel times at a fraction of the cost of building new metro lines by utilizing existing roads
• Environment: Would take an estimated 8,000-10,000 cars off the road annually, reducing carbon emissions and other harmful air pollutants.
This Rapid Transit network, together with the Purple Line and much-needed improvements to Metrorail, will be essential to reduce time waiting in traffic, provide affordable transit options, help businesses attract employees, cut asthma-inducing air pollution, and promote vibrant and livable communities throughout the county.
The choice is clear: will Montgomery County do nothing and watch as traffic inevitably grows worse, or act now to ensure sustainable, rapid, and affordable transportation solutions? Let’s act now for the next generation of transit!