Last night the Southside meeting on the draft of Phase II of the Regional Transit Vision Plan was held in the Board Room of Hampton Roads Transit (HRT) in Norfolk. It drew a standing room only crowd.
4 additional areas of the state have added mass transit, as employers are making it a prerequisite to locate their businesses there. Currently 40% of people movements in Arlington are by mass transit. Automobiles are the second largest expense in household budgets. In auto dependent areas, automobile expenses comprise 25% of the budget; in transit rich areas, only 9%.
Reid Greenmun, Vice Chairman/Chairman of No Transportation of the extremist VBTA, has tried to claim mass transit is part of a conspiracy to take cars away from people. For anyone foolish enough to believe him, Amy Inman of Virginia's Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT) told the gathering, "We'll always have the automobile." (Yes, Greenmun is a paranoid nutcase.)
From the draft Transit Vision Plan:
1. By 2025 - Norfolk's light rail starter line would be extended to Virginia Beach's Oceanfront and Naval Station Norfolk, with high speed ferries across the harbor.
2. Between 2025 and 2035 - commuter rail to from Newport News to Toano, Newport News light rail, light rail from Norfolk to Chesapeake's Greenbrier area, and a streetcar from the Harbor Park multimodal station to downtown Portsmouth.
Additional measures are laid out beyond 2035.
Comments, both written and verbal, were taken after the Presentation. Also, comments may be e-mailed to DRPT.