WAKE COUNTY APPROVES TRANSIT REFERENDUM!
On Tuesday night, a broad cross-section of community leaders and organizations celebrated a victory many years in the making. The Wake County Transit Plan, the product of two years of work and community discussion, passed by a 53-47 margin.
As a result, Wake County will be able to raise and spend $2.4 Billion of local money over 10 years which, combined with Federal grants and some GoTriangle bonds, will fund the development of a vastly improved public transit system. With three times as many buses running 7 days a week, 19 hours a day, Bus Rapid Transit, Commuter Rail, and a vastly expanded network of commuter express buses, the Wake County Transit Plan will make public transportation an option that is there when you need it, rather than something you need to plan your life around. It will make an enormous difference in our community.
My colleagues Sig Hutchinson and Matt Calabria deserve a huge amount of credit for their hard work and leadership on this measure. But we were joined in that effort by a bipartisan coalition built to prepare Wake County for the growth that is coming. Moving Wake Forward is a remarkable and unprecedented group made up of many corporations, individuals and community groups. It is the first time I can remember the Raleigh Association of Realtors, the Sierra Club, WakeUP Wake County, the League of Conservation Voters, and the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce all on the same side of an issue.
In 2014, my colleagues and I ran for Commission on a promise to place a transit plan on the ballot and pass it in 2016. For the last three weeks, during early vote and on Election Day, it was my pleasure to stand and meet voters and tell them about the importance of transit to our growing community and the details of this plan. We promised to do this.
I am happy to say that’s a promise kept.