RFTA, not light rail, the solution to transportation issues | AspenTimes.com

RFTA, not light rail, the solution to transportation issues

I have read several letters regarding the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority 7A ballot issue. There are some people that express a “no” vote while advocating for a light-rail system. In a perfect world, light rail would be fantastic. The cost of light rail would be prohibitive, however. Light rail construction costs can vary between $50 million to $100 million per mile. Additional hourly costs per hour of operation could cost 1.5 to 2 times the cost of bus operation.

If RFTA 7A passes it will cost a residential home owner the cost of one craft beer or latte (with tip) per month. This would raise approximately $9.5 million per year. How far could you extend light rail with $9.5 million per year?

Light rail sounds great. How would you pay for it? It’s time to get cars off the road. Does anyone remember the Grand Avenue Bridge detour? The Colorado Department of Transportation collaborated with RFTA to obtain a traffic reduction of 27 percent with increased bus service.

Art Riddile

Mayor of New Castle

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