TransitKC

Got Light Rail Envy?

Still a bit of a slow news cycle until the mayoral and council elections are over next month, so today we bring you more updates on other light rail systems across the country.

First, we look east to New Jersey Transit’s Hudson-Bergen Light Rail line, which was a public-private partnership that allowed one supplier to design, build, operate and maintain the system. Since opening in 2000 — and expanding several times since — the line has generated a lot of new development. That’s why NJ Transit has commissioned a study to prove how much additional private investment has occurred since the $2 billion system opened.

Next, we move to south to the DART system in Dallas, which just announced an expansion of their green line out to the suburb of Carrollton. The expansion will run along an existing Union Pacific freight corridor. The city of Carrollton, which is just north of DFW airport, has been buying up land, rezoning, and offering tax breaks to developers to build transit-oriented development.

Lastly, we head west to Phoenix, where fully-assembled light rail cars were finally unveiled for their new 20-mile line, which opens in December 2008. In addition, the suburbs of Chandler and Scottsdale are both getting serious about connecting to the main spine through Phoenix, Mesa, and Tempe.

3 comments

3 Comments so far

  1. Dustin February 23rd, 2007 12:55 pm

    Wow, the comments on the Phoenix car unveiling are a real cess-pool.

  2. Dave February 23rd, 2007 3:50 pm

    just goes to show you there will always be haters, and that those haters are also probably in denial about global warming, peak oil, and the growing income gap.

  3. Jim February 25th, 2007 3:16 pm

    Not really sure what comments the “real cess-pool” description is aimed at – but Dave you are probably right about the denial part. At some point, like it or not, we will have to switch our attitudes relative to transit. What is frightening to me is that even people I would consider sympathetic towards environmental issues often don’t get it when it comes to transit. For example, I was in a meeting this past week at work with people I considered environmentally sympathetic. The discussion turned to what we could do to make our work place more environmentally friendly, so I suggested encourage people to use the bus and carpool – I was immediately met with laughs and sarcastic comments that were based on misinformation. The general feeling was that we should really just “talk” about environmental concerns, not necessarily do anything! Well, at least I felt good about taking the bus home that day!