Friday, July 20, 2007

HRTA: For good, or for evil

The blogosphere has been full of postings about the Hampton Roads Transportation Authority. The latest post I saw was Vivian Paige's post where she reminds us, "And don’t forget the tolls. I expect everything around here will have tolls."

I suppose so, but I also suppose that if we want to get from place to place, we're going to have to pay for the privilege.

Here's my fear: That the HRTA is going to focus on roads. Screw the roads, frankly. Roads and bridges and tunnels are nothing more than a case of "if you build it, they will come." I remember reading somewhere that indicated studies show that building vehicle transportation routes only brings more traffic.

What we need here in Hampton Roads is decent public transportation. If we built a light rail system that gave us decent transportation options, I'd gladly pay the additional taxes and fees. But if they dump all the money into more roads, I'm going to start throwing tea into the harbor, if you catch my drift.

We need to look long term, and we need to look to get people into more efficient modes of transportation. And, most importantly, the cities and counties of Hampton Roads need to start acting like a region with holistic plans, rather than drinking from the parochial fountain of protect-my-turf-and-my-rice-bowl. If we can't work together to solve this problem, we're going to go down in flames... and Hampton Roads will no longer be a place any of us will want to live and work.

No comments:

Post a Comment