What if Citizens created a Transportation Plan for Austin?
Love Transit Plan - Part I:
-A 7.5 mile rail line from North Lamar Transit Center to Seaholm Station. We should have ROW (Right of Way) under 183 and should be able to run it at grade - $300 million (please see this NACN update if you have questions on the cost)
-Rapid Bus from Seaholm Station to Riverside corridor - $40 million (goal: build strong ridership numbers to support a future rail line to the airport)
-Rapid Bus from Seaholm Station to Oltorf Corridor - $40 million (goal: build strong ridership numbers to expand rapid bus syytem, to alleviate congestion around Slaughter/Mopac )
-Rapid Bus from North Lamar Transit Center to Burnet (Domain) then to Parmer (Apple) - $40 million. Also connects to the current Red Rail. (goal: build strong ridership numbers to support an expanded rapid bus line east along Parmer to undeveloped land in the Northeast (south of Parmer, east of I-35), which could be developed into high density housing for the 78758/78759 IT employment hub)
-Move North Lamar's current Rapid Buses to Project Connect's East Austin alignment. Spend $15 million on sidewalks and bus stops to create a robust system for UT's Medical School, Mueller, and ACC's Highland Campus (goal: create strong ridership numbers to develop a rail line in the corridor)
Move the freed up buses from Lamar, Riverside, and Oltorf to neighborhoods west of Mopac. Spend $15 million on sidewalks and bus stops and spend $5 million on additional buses to create a bus system west of Mopac. (goal: create strong ridership numbers to develop rapid bus routes to solve the (mainly) east/west mobility issues in the neighborhoods west of Mopac)
Love Transit Plan - Part II:
Spend an addition 5 million to restructure Cap Metro, dividing the agency into 5 divisions, using City Council Districts:
Sector 1 - District 2 and District 3
Sector 2 - District 5 and District 9
Sector 3 - District 8 and District 10
Sector 4 - District 6 and District 7
Sector 5 - District 4 and District 1
Sector 1 - District 2 and District 3
Sector 2 - District 5 and District 8
Sector 3 - District 9 and District 1
Sector 4 - District 4 and District 7
Sector 5 - District 6 and District 10
Assign each sector a director. The director has to 1) present the metrics for their sector to Cap Metro each month and is also 2) required to have quarterly citizens forums, where the director and staff present statistics and metrics, and listen to citizen feedback.
-Create a system where one person is directly responsible to both the Cap Metro board, and to the citizens that are being served in that specific sector.
-Create a system where two City Council members can be the watchdogs for their sector and where Cap Metro's performance in a sector can be a major factor in city elections.
-Create a system where small businesses can effectively advocate for transportation solutions for their business needs.
-Create a system where it would be possible to have a citizen's board for oversight and to ensure metrics and citizen needs are being met.
This is a suggested transit plan - but it's YOUR choice. If you think the
Love Transit plan merits a community-wide discussion in 2015, then
our City Council Candidates need to hear from you.
Let's Love North Austin, but let's Love Other Districts too!!
The Love Transit Plan:
$465 million dollars
If Cap Metro and CAMPO pitch in $15 million each,
the City pays $35 million,
then we could vote on a $400 million bond that would help all 10 districts.
Because we are all in this together.
Picture - Creative Commons, from here
Richard Schulz Offers: Express Mopac Bus as Another Solution
Notes - our cost is based on Denver's price per mile in 2014 dollars.
"My estimated cost, total system per mile, is $80 million/mile for this alignment (NLTS to Seaholm). This is based on 2014 dollar escalations of starter lines in Houston ($55.0 mn/mile) and Phoenix ($79.2 mn/mile). Phoenix's cost included a long bridge over the Salt River and floodplain, not relevant in this alignment.
Using the $80 mn/mile figure, total cost would be $544 million for this backward-L-shaped alignment, mostly in the G-L corridor."