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21st Century Transportation for Arizona
Most Arizonans needs some form of transportation each day to get to work, school or other responsibilities. Yet Arizona’s current transportation options are incredibly lacking.
Arizona Needs More Transportation Options
For too many years, Arizona has neglected to adequately invest in public transit, bicycling and pedestrian infrastructure. The failure to provide a 21st Century Transportation system forces many drivers to deal with daily headaches of accidents and stifling traffic jams. Meanwhile, the pollutants from our vehicles contribute to poor air quality, leaving more and more citizens in Arizona - particularly children and seniors - suffering from respiratory illnesses like asthma.
The public transit investments voters have approved on a local level are working, but they do not extend far enough. While public transit in Arizona has helped to relieve congestion, curb pollution, mitigate public health problems and stimulate the economy, we can and must do better.
Consider the following:
- $11 billion in economic development activities has already been generated along the light rail in the Phoenix area since its launch less than a decade ago.
- Enhancing public transportation options will help Arizona attract and retain talented young professionals and the businesses that want to hire them. Millennials have led a trend since the middle of the last decade away from driving and toward greater ridership on public transit. Public transit agencies in Flagstaff, the Phoenix metro area, Tucson and Yuma are experiencing record ridership.
- Expanding options to travel without a personal automobile can save hours of productive time wasted behind the wheel and improves mobility for those who cannot afford or are unable to drive a car.
Arizona PIRG is working with community and business leaders, public health and consumer organizations, transportation advocates and concerned citizens to encourage our elected officials to advance a transportation system that meets the needs of the 21st century – one in which public transportation plays a much bigger role than it does today.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released new guidelines for businesses and employers in responding to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Many of the recommendations are sensible: regular temperature and health checks, enhanced cleaning, staggered schedules and employee distancing, and greater use of video and teleconferencing instead of in person meetings. But when it came to “employees who commute to work using public transportation or ride sharing,” the CDC’s recommendation made less sense. It said the following: “Offer employees incentives to use forms of transportation that minimize close contact with others, such as offering reimbursement for parking or single-occupancy ride shares.”
Walkers and bikers are getting killed at alarming rates -- at a time when we need this type of transportation more than ever.
Faced with a choice over whether to keep light rail on track, Phoenix voters decided once again to give the transit option a green light.
If you are a Phoenix voter that waited until today to cast your ballot, please read.
Arizona PIRG is pleased that Phoenix citizens once again voted (4th time since 2000) to recognize light rail as a beneficial transportation and to keep light rail on track.
Federal lawmakers have put forward the INVEST in America Act — a nearly $500 billion transportation spending bill which prioritizes repairing existing infrastructure over new highway projects, and contains key provisions for more sustainable investments.
Transportation | U.S. PIRG
Seventeen pedestrians and two cyclists were killed every day, on average, in traffic crashes in 2018. PIRG Transform Transportation Campaign Director Matt Casale explains that cyclists face a dilemma: walking or biking are convenient and pollution-free modes of transportation, but they're also dangerous in a world that's been built car-first.
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