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Action Alert: Comment on the RTA Strategic Plan

December 30, 2017

The Regional Transportation Authority of the Chicago metro area is seeking comments on the 2018 – 2023 Draft Regional Strategic Transit Plan.

The plan acknowledges that the region’s transit system faces great challenges.  The actions proposed by the plan are inadequate to overcome those challenges.  It is largely concerned with maintaining the status quo, which has proven unsustainable.

The RTA should provide the bold leadership our regional transit system needs to grow and thrive in the coming years.  That means visionary plan based on growth.  It is the only way to attract the ridership, revenue and political support needed to gain proper investment in the system.

The draft plan points to other U.S. regions that have successfully raised transit funding, like Atlanta, Denver and Seattle. These regions were able to ask voters for more money because they had plans to dramatically expand and improve transit service. From entirely new rail lines to more frequent and reliable service on existing rail and bus routes, these regions were truly offering something visionary as a return on their investment.

In contrast, this draft plan’s focus on more funding merely to achieve “state of good repair” is a tough sell.

What do you think a bold vision for transit would look like?

We believe that a bold vision would start with true cooperation between the transit agencies.  That would mean better coordination between buses and Metra trains and a single unified farecard. A bold vision would also include modern, more accessible Metra coaches; more frequent service and crosstown Metra service.  It would prepare for high-speed trains that would allow the visitors from throughout the Midwest to leave their cars at home.

Please use this form to send a comment.  We have made suggested bullet points, but it would be best if you replaced them with your own. The deadline for comments is December 31, but we will make sure that all messages sent through this page through the first week of January will get to the right people.

You can view the draft Regional Transit Strategic Plan here.

Please tell the RTA what the plan should contain by sending an email through this form.