You must be registered to comment and vote on comments.
Dayton's transit plan would jump-start needed list of projects.
I'm not sure I can understand repubs opposition to light rail to move people, especially today with the high cost of auto ownership, estimated by AAA to be close to $9,000 annually. Let us also not forget the high cost of roads, bridges and maintaining our highway system. I frequently visit Chicago and am always impressed how easily their transit system moves people and what a failure it is for our state not to do the same.
gene428, you realize that Democratic-controlled Illinois is on the verge of bankruptcy, right? And that Chicago is the new murder capitol? We should try to be different than them.
The major opposition to transit and rail comes from the fossil fuel industry, who pour billions into a huge propaganda effort to convince people that 1) transit and rail need to be "profitable" or "self-sufficient," while never holding other forms of transportation to this standard. The fuel tax only covers 60% of road expenses, and only 2% goes to transit. 2)transit and rail are only used by "thugs" and criminals, a convenient way to scare White, suburban taxpayers--some of whom do not frequently use buses, light rail comuter rail, and Amtrak--into thinking they are paying for a free ride for people who don't work. 3) Climate change is a big hoax, so all this clean transportation is really unnecessary. 4) It is somehow an infringement on people's freedom, when in reality, not giving transportation choices to ALL taxpayers is a true restriction of freedom. Big Oil is scared to death of electric trains, electric cars, wind power and solar; and the billions they spend are a small investment compared to the profits they would lose if we reduce our dependence on fossil fuels.
Want to spend more on rail projects? How about a transit user tax, similar to the fuel taxes motorists have to pay for the infrastructure they use. What do you say editorial staff? Time to put your money where your mouth is.
@garagewine- A transit user tax won't be enough with the 15 people who ride northstar. I'd augment it with a Media tax. The Star Tribune can pay their fair share too.
If the users of the rapid transit had to pay for the actual cost of their ride, they could afford a new car and gas to put in it. I will never understand why we keep throwing our money away on a losing proposition. 20 years from now they will pull down the tracks, move the trains to the junk yard and come up with a new way to waste the taxpayers money.
All of you who are against transit spending: do you realize that transit takes people out of their cars, thereby freeing up road space for people who really need or want to drive? This pitting transit riders against drivers, roads vs. trains, is incredibly dumb and short-sighted. It's not either/or. We need more transportation options of all kinds.
"This pitting transit riders against drivers, roads vs. trains, is incredibly dumb and short-sighted. It's not either/or. We need more transportation options of all kinds.". --- MP, people are not against trains or other transportation options as you say. The issue here is whether or not these options are justified in additional public spending. I think most people, myself included, would not have an issue if these trains were being privately financed and run as a private business.
"The major opposition to transit and rail comes from the fossil fuel industry..."----If I were in the fossil fuel industry, I'd be one of the strongest supporters of these projects. Their construction alone consumes enormous amounts of energy.
dschachenmeyer: If roads are publicly financed, why shouldn't trains be?
Your comment is being reviewed for inclusion on the site.
Comments will be reviewed before being published.
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.
425 Portland Av. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55488
© 2013 StarTribune. All rights reserved.
StarTribune.com is powered by Limelight Networks