Metro Solicits Public Input For Transit Redesign

Metro screen capture of the Transit System Re-imagining survey.
Metro is soliciting input from the public as it redesigns it's transit network. As the agency rethinks priorities, the idea is to get feedback from those who actually use the system.

It's an 18-month-long online project, and the goal is to come up with a more efficient system that can carry more people.

Christof Spieler is on the Metro board.

"What we know is that the region has changed. A lot of our bus routes, frankly, date back to street car lines in the 1920's and they haven't really been re-thought in the interim. And meanwhile where the population is and where the jobs are has changed dramatically." 

The survey is not necessarily a route-by-route consideration, but a blank-slate redesign of the system, taking into account light rail.

"A lot of people out there would say that a transit agency's goal is to carry as many people as possible, to put service near as many people as possible. You can't do both. If you try to cover more area, you will inevitably carry fewer people. If you try to carry more people, you will inevitably cover less area." 

Public input will augment that of transit experts and a task force made up of stakeholders representing neighborhoods, employment districts and local agencies. Spieler says Metro is trying to determine goals — and those are not technical questions, but policy questions.

"You can't bring in an expert and get the right answer because there's no one right answer to that question. So the first stage of this, which is what we're getting public input on right now, is actually what should our goals be. What kind of system are we trying to operate? What is the purpose of that system?" 

For more information, visit the Transit System Reimagining Project website.

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Ed Mayberry

Local Anchor, All Things Considered

Ed Mayberry has worked in radio since 1971, with many of those years spent on the rock 'n' roll disc jockey side of the business...