RFTA seeking citizen input on future of valley’s bus system | AspenTimes.com

RFTA seeking citizen input on future of valley’s bus system

Aspen Times Staff Report

Buses make over 800 trips through Aspen each day, and that number is expected to increase, not just here, but in every valley community, over the next 20 years.The Roaring Fork Transportation Authority is holding three community meetings to share information on the future of quieter, greener bus technologies and to hear thoughts on what kind of buses should be a part of our region’s future.Citizen input from the meetings will help RFTA develop a road map for creating a more environmentally friendly transit system.Citizens and the elected officials who sit on the RFTA board have expressed interest in pursuing advanced bus technologies that are quieter, create less pollution and reduce dependence on petroleum.A variety of advanced technologies exist or are under development and have differing costs and benefits. Fred Silver of WestStart/Calstart, a nationally recognized expert in the field of advanced bus technologies, will present the results of his review of bus technologies for the Roaring Fork region.Silver recently returned from leading congressional staffers and officials from the Federal Transit Authority on a tour of Bus Rapid Transit systems in Europe. The purpose was to learn how new vehicles are being used in BRT systems in Europe, and how they can be adapted for use in the United States.The community meetings will begin with a brief overview of the recently released corridor investment study and the proposed Bus Rapid Transit system for the region, followed by Silver’s presentation, questions and answers, and public input on what kind of buses RFTA should consider in planning for the future.Lunch is provided at the two noon meetings and RSVP is requested. The meetings are scheduled as follows:-Glenwood Springs Community Center, noon to 2 p.m., Wednesday;-Carbondale Town Hall, 5 to 7 p.m., also on Wednesday;-and Aspen City Hall, noon to 2 p.m., Thursday.If you plan to attend one of the noon meetings, please contact RFTA at 963-9012.

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