According to Tuesday’s Around Town column, state DOT engineers are proceeding with preliminary work on a possible Bus Rapid Transit system down the Cobb Parkway corridor, even though the controversial proposal has been pulled off the upcoming Nov. 4 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax ballot by Cobb Commission Chairman Tim Lee.
“We have some scoping under way on Highway 41 (Cobb Parkway), to understand what opportunities there are to make improvements along 41 and so they don’t preclude a future BRT, in terms of building bypasses and that kind of thing,” state DOT Commissioner Keith Golden told the MDJ editorial board last week.
Commissioner Golden obviously knows little of what he speaks when discussing transit for Cobb County. A few brief facts:
For many good reasons, the taxpayers of Cobb do not want a fixed guideway transit system, regardless of cost and regardless of who pushes for it.
The driving patterns of most Cobb residents are unpredictably varied. There aren’t any major point-to-point routes with sufficiently high vehicle volume that would warrant a fixed guideway type of system.
Cobb does need to expand its transit services, especially improving local coverage which will entail numerous forms of vehicles operating over a large geography.
Demand for transit service should guide our planners in their effort to design flexible and cost-effective transit systems. The aspirations of low-information bureaucrats need to be taken lightly.
Cobb’s DOT knows how to improve traffic flow without a fixed-guideway transit system. There are many approaches, mostly intersection improvements and traffic management techniques that will solve most of our problems.
The CDOT folks know how to do this. They also know how to expand and improve our existing CCT services. We don’t need Golden’s interference.
Finally, Commissioner Golden needs to realize that his meddling with the BRT issue in Cobb is very annoying to many Cobb voters and will not help Gov. Nathan Deal’s re-election.
Further, use of taxpayer money for more study of the matter will infuriate the folks who already oppose the proposed SPLOST and will only incite them to campaign harder against it.