News Would You Like Some Fries with that Diet Coke?
posted by April 14 at 11:47 AMon
Over at HorsesAss, Goldy’s got a post laying out polling numbers on a combined RTID/light rail package.
The numbers, about 61% in favor after a dose of messaging, are pretty positive, and so Goldy seems to be saying, everybody should stop complaining and fretting about a joint measure.
While I’ve certainly Slogged and bitched that a joint measure will fail (transit advocates and environmentalists will abandon the measure), my real gripe isn’t so much that it will flop at the polls. My real gripe is this: I don’t want to vote for roads expansion in order to get transit. It seems a bit like putting a dash of soy milk in my chocolate, almond syrup shake to keep the weight off.
Moreover, in order to ensure victory at the polls, planners might lower the price tag (currently it’s about $9.5 billion for light rail and about $7.4 billion for roads). Since they’re joined at the hip, planners would probably cut from both projects. Well, it sure seems dunderheaded to scale back transit expansion in order to lower a $16/$17 billion plan, when already, 40 plus percent of the package isn’t for transit.
Goldy’s contention that polling looks good doesn’t address my biggest fear—in fact, it confirms it: It’s going to pass, and we’re going to undo the benefits of voting for transit by simultaneously voting to expand roads.
Indeed, here’s the polling I’d like to see: light rail on its own and RTID on its own. I’d bet light rail would pass and RTID wouldn’t.