Seattle Gets It!

Seattle voters approved a Transportation Benefit District in 2014. The first year’s Performance Report contains the statement “… the City of Seattle is working … to identify projects, like One Center City, that will improve the quantity and quality of non-automobile transportation options and accommodate this projected growth in travel demand through non-SOV [Single-Occupant Vehicle] travel.” By adding bus service, Seattle has succeeded in changing the trend of Single-Occupant Vehicle use. In this graph from the Performance Report, solo driving has already declined, and is projected to drop even more in the future. MTC has failed to do this for the Bay Area.…

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Nashville Voters to decide on bold multimodal plan

Unlike the Bay Area, Nashville is presenting voters with a comprehensive plan that can realistically change how residents travel. While TRANSDEF has no opinion on the merits of the proposal, we applaud the innovation and courage of the agencies and groups involved in developing this proposal. It clearly is bold–and potentially very effective. Read more about the plan here. This is what real planning looks like.

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Seattle’s effectiveness in getting people on transit highlights how badly the Bay Area is doing

A recent story in City Lab entitled How Seattle Bucked a National Trend and Got More People to Ride the Bus provides compelling on-the-ground evidence of the efficacy of transportation planning in reducing regional congestion. Seattle’s strategies are clearly working to reduce the share of solo commuting by new residents. The Bay Area, in contrast, is projected to have the same proportion of solo drivers in 2040 as there is now. The strategy here isn’t working at all… Adding a million more solo drivers to already congested roads is a formula for gridlock. Regional Measure 3’s defeat in June will help influence MTC to…

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Napa Valley Register: Regional Measure 3: A taxing ripoff proposal?

An extended letter to the editor by Jack Gray, Director of the Napa County Taxpayers Association: A headline story in the Register of Feb. 11 alluded to a proposal to boost Bay Area bridge tolls by $3 (“Proposed Bay Area bridge toll hikes could benefit Napa County projects”). Implementation of Regional Measure 3 is now scheduled to be on the June ballots of all nine counties of the Association of Bay Area Governments. The article indicated that Napa would benefit if bridge tolls rise. The complete letter

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Coalition Forms to Challenge MTC’s Ballot Measure

A coalition of taxpayer groups and environmentalists had its first meeting today. Besides wanting to defeat Regional Measure 3, which will be on the June ballot, the group wants to educate the public about the unaccountability of the Bay Area’s regional government, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, or MTC. The group agreed that an elected Commission would enable the public to impose consequences on the actions of Commissioners, by voting them out of office.

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TRANSDEF Analyzes the Projects in RM3

We divided the $4.5 billion expected to be raised by the measure into three categories: Highway projects, which will increase the amount of driving, leading to more congestion. More driving increases the region’s GHG emissions, which harm the climate. Transit projects which are pretty good, as far as TRANSDEF is concerned. Bloated transit projects, which are either definitely or likely to be a tremendous waste of scarce resources.

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What’s the solution to the transportation mess?

TRANSDEF, the creator of this site, put forward a potential solution in 2004 that demonstrated promising results. When MTC evaluated the environmental impacts of the plan we posed, MTC determined that it had lower overall impacts than the plan it adopted. The TRANSDEF Smart Growth plan offered more benefits.  When supporters of Regional Measure 3 claim that “We have to move forward with these strategies–they are the only thing that works” you now know they are wrong.

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