Can Mass Transit Save New York? [And What Will Save NY's Mass Transit?]
As we watch our roadways and bridges crumble before our eyes, and see fares and tolls soar (you want how much to cross the Verrazano Bridge?), thoughts on how New York can revive (more like resuscitate) mass transit, and how mass trasnsit could actually breathe new life into the Empire State's sagging economy.
If we're going to talk about sustainability (and these days, who doesn't?), we have to talk about that which cannot, in the long run, be sustained, at least not in an economic environment where the incubator is primed for growth.
High taxes, skyrocketing fares, outlandish tolls, and an infrastructure that makes getting from here to there next to impossible, will not sustain us. Nor will mismanagement and dysfunction, whether by the bungling chieftans at public authorities such as the MTA or in the seat of government in Albany, sustain anything more than the status quo -- a deep, dark hole into which is tossed a shovel, John Q. Public emphatically told, "keep digging!"
New directions, and a new way of thinking -- from inside the box and without (box sold separately) -- are imperatives, both in restructuring and rebuilding New York's system of mass transit, and in turning this once mighty engine of commerce into the powerhouse that catpults our State -- and its tax-strapped residents -- out of that hole and into a new era of prosperity.
A report (actually, several) from our friends at the Drum Major Institute:
How the Next Governor of New York Can Save Public Transit
With New York’s gubernatorial election less than two weeks away, a report jointly released earlier today by the Drum Major Institute for Public Policy and Transportation Alternatives urges the candidates for governor to commit to ending the MTA’s costly borrowing and to reinvesting in public transit in order to drive economic growth, create good jobs, boost the state's economic competitiveness, and save state taxpayers significant money.
The report reveals that the disinvestment and debt crippling the MTA are the result of failed decisions by state legislators and recent governors. Evidence and data are presented to show that the next governor must pursue several actions to safeguard public transit and put the MTA back on sound fiscal footing.
To read the report, go here. To read earlier reports on solving the MTA’s debt crisis and ensuring more sustainable sources of transit revenue, go here and here.
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