Press Releases

CSG Releases New Report, "THINKING BIG PLANNING SMART," Calling for Next Generation of Transit

CSG Releases New Report, “THINKING BIG PLANNING SMART,” Calling for Next Generation of Transit

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We don't need a ranking to know our traffic is bad. What the headlines miss is the crucial role our Metro and our other transit investments have played in preventing gridlock, in offering us an effective alternative to sitting in traffic, and in fueling an economic boom that has revitalized our city and transit-oriented suburbs. "Fifty years ago, visionary leaders conceived, planned and built Metro, and reshaped the Washington, D.C. region. The first order of business is to complete the reinvestment and full rehabilitation of this system that is so critical for our regional economy. We are also calling today for a new vision for a new generation -- for a Next Generation of Transit investments and the leadership to make it happen," said Stewart Schwartz, Executive Director of the Coalition for Smarter Growth. "We believe our region's leadership is ready for the challenge."

Don’t Get Tripped Up by TRIP! If Most Maryland Roads are in Bad Condition, Then Focus Funds on Maintenance First AND Provide Transit as an Alternative to Sitting in Traffic

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The TRIP group ("The Road Information Program") just issued its annual report on the bad condition of state roads, featuring Maryland and other states and conveniently timed for the state General Assembly debates about transportation funding. "We agree with TRIP that Maryland's roads and bridges are in need of repair, but TRIP's primary recommendation has traditionally been highway expansion," said Stewart Schwartz, Executive Director of the Coalition for Smarter Growth. "This simply doesn't track. Too often when we see the alarm raised about aging infrastructure, we see new funding go into capacity expansion even as the maintenance needs continue to mount."

STATEMENT ON PASSAGE OF VIRGINIA TRANSPORTATION FUNDING BILL (HB2313)

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VIRGINIA -- "Our groups pressed for major progress at every step of the legislative process, including pushing for the needs of the Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads regions, funding for local roads, substantially more funding for transit, and most of all - for a meaningful, on-going evaluation of VDOT spending," said Jeff Painter Executive Director for the Virginia League of Conservation Voters. "While a number of the priorities we recommended were included, such as funding for Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads, for intercity rail, for Dulles Rail, and for road maintenance, there remains a great need for thorough evaluation of how and where all of these new taxpayer dollars will be spent."

Why the Transportation Bill is Bad Public Policy and a Bad Deal for Virginia

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VIRGINIA - "Look beyond the deal specifics and look at the real implications of the announced deal on HB2313, and you'll see a bill that represents bad fiscal policy and bad transportation policy," said Stewart Schwartz, Executive Director of the Coalition for Smarter Growth. "It's a bad deal for Virginia. Without reforming VDOT spending the statewide component of the funding will be wasted, and all Virginians will have to pay for this waste. On the same day that the conference committee announced a deal proposing about $850 million per year in additional transportation funding, we learned that VDOT is wasting yet more of the $3 billion in funds approved by the General Assembly in 2011," said Chris Miller, President of the Piedmont Environmental Council. "Yesterday, in a presentation to the Commonwealth Transportation Board, VDOT said it would allocate $869 million in borrowed federal funds to Route 460 and the Coalfields Expressway, two of the most wasteful projects to ever be proposed in Virginia. Then there is the $1.25 billion or so they propose to waste on the Charlottesville Bypass and the NoVA Outer Beltway. "

Montgomery Planners Propose 78-Mile Rapid Transit system

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Today, Montgomery County planning staff present to the Planning Board a 78-mile version of the proposed Rapid Transit System, based on several months of data-driven modeling and analysis. The Rapid Transit System would be a premium, reliable transit service using dedicated lanes as much as possible to bypass traffic, running frequently throughout the day, and stopping at enhanced stations featuring real time arrival information and efficient boarding like that found on Metro.