June 16, 2015

Public Forum on Best Ways to Push Forward with a County Rapid Transit System

The Montgomery County Executive’s Transit Task Force will host a public forum on Wednesday, June 17 at 6 p.m. in the County Council’s Third Floor Hearing Room, 100 Maryland Ave., Rockville, where residents will express their views on subjects before the Transit Task Force. The group has been reconvened to review the prior legislation and recommend how best to organize and finance implementation of a high-performance Rapid Transit System (RTS).

As of the release time of this edition of the newsletter, the list of speakers totaled more than 50 people of diverse viewpoints.  No more speakers are being accepted, but residents can submit their views in writing at Transit 2015 Contact Us.

To help residents understand the importance of a Rapid Transit System and how it can help re- shape the future of transportation in the County, consider the following benefits RTS will provide for riders:
  • Speedy transit often in dedicated road lanes;
  • Frequent runs along busy routes;
  • Quick passenger boarding via wide doors and no steps;
  • Sheltered stations; real-time schedules; and
  • Reduced carbon footprint (fewer cars).
Other advantages include:
  • RTS can be built more quickly and cheaply than other options to reduce traffic congestion. RTS can be built for one-fourth of the cost of light rail, one-eighth of the cost of new highways and one-fifteenth of the cost of heavy rail, e.g., Metro.
  • RTS can connect more people to more jobs. With RTS in place, an estimated 100,000 new jobs and up to $26 billion in economic growth can be expected by 2030.
  • RTS will enable more people to commute to/from work in a shorter amount of time. This would help many commuters, including those in poverty, as commuting time has been found to be the strongest factor in the odds of people escaping poverty.
  • A system that can mitigate road congestion and improve transit options benefits everyone.
Read The Washington Post editorial.

For more about County’s Rapid Transit System, visit the Transit Authority website.

The public hearing will be aired live on County Cable Montgomery -- channel 6 for Comcast and RCN subscribers and channel 30 for Verizon customers. It will also be streamed live and be available for on-demand viewing after the event.

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