Montgomery’s proposed Rapid Transit System can transform travel in our county, but there are a number of potential hurdles. This week we are approaching one of those hurdles and we need your voice.
A key part of the Rapid Transit System's recipe for traffic relief is giving priority to rapid transit vehicles over cars where it's the most efficient use of our roads. It's also a principle that has been part of Montgomery's general plan since 1993. But in hearings last week, some members of the Planning Board appeared to waver in their commitment to this key principle.
Send a quick email to the Planning Board to support a future that prioritizes sensible transit solutions over the same old pollution and traffic-inducing practices >>
As the hearings pick up again, we need to make sure that Montgomery residents are voicing their support for lane priority so that we don't end up with a watered-down system that makes no impact on reducing traffic.
County staff are hard at work calculating which roads would be the best fit for a high-quality, reliable Rapid Transit System to connect our communities and complement Metro and the coming Purple Line.
Priority lanes for transit aren't a new idea. 20 years ago, the 1993 Master Plan's transportation section stated we should "Give priority to establishing exclusive travelways for transit and high occupancy vehicles serving the Urban Ring and Corridor."
Reassure the Planning Board that you support a future of sensible transit solutions instead of the same old pollution and traffic >>
Communities committed to prioritizing transit, like Arlington, Bethesda, and many others have seen success in relieving traffics, providing better options for people to get around, and improving quality of life. But last week's Planning Board discussions indicate that they may be wavering on that fundamental point, and that they may need some convincing that prioritizing transit where it's most efficient is the right decision for the county.
Without a commitment to that concept, building a high quality Rapid Transit System could be very difficult. The debate really comes down to this: How will we share the road? Will we continue to place cars above all else in the decisions we make, or will we begin to make a shift towards providing better options for people than sitting in traffic?
Let the Planning Board know that you’re ready for Montgomery County to prioritize transit, and move Montgomery County toward a sustainable future. >>
Coalition for Smarter Growth
Graphic by Aza Raskin.
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