Holy Boondoggle Batman; from today's Daily Texan:
A federal grant worth $11.3 million will revolutionize transportation in Austin and change the way students connect with their campus, the city and the surrounding areas.
The project — announced yesterday — will allow Capital Metro to increase bus and train speeds and frequency while doubling the freight service so fewer freight trucks will be on the streets. It will include a Bus Rapid Transit, projected to begin in 2014. Express Lanes, projected for 2015, will be highway lanes that are free for transit vehicles and tolled for other vehicles.
Which fits with Obama's long-term agenda:Another part of the project’s plan is the Urban Rail, a hybrid between a light rail and a streetcar to connect the University to areas like downtown Austin, South Congress and Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. Austin will contribute $15 million to the project, Cap Metro President Linda Watson said.
“These projects truly have the power to transform communities,” U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx said. “No one wants to get used to traffic jams and to long wait times.”Complete with land grabs:
The proposed Regional Rail will connect Austin to surrounding areas, such as Georgetown, San Marcos and San Antonio.And fuzzy economic predictions:
Foxx said every dollar invested in public transportation yields $4 in economic returns.But at least bureaucrats know what's best for the rest of us:
“What people really want is their time back,” Foxx said. “They’re working hard. They’re trying to make it home for dinner [or] make it to a soccer game for their kids. That five or 10 minutes that they save because they [weren’t sitting in traffic], that matters to people right at home.”Read the whole article, complete with pandering to students, here.
Update: We just took two trips on South Congress in the past two hours; we can only imagine the decade long traffic nightmare attempting to put light rail there would create.