Working to improve Atlanta's quality of life through smart growth
Coalition launches “Fair Share” campaign
METRO ATLANTA – William B. Hartsfield established his legacy – and Atlanta’s – throughthis fierce determination to make Atlanta an aviation center. He secured that significant transportation investment, helping fuel metro Atlanta’s growth after WWII. Figuratively-speaking he added jet-fuel to Atlanta’s ambitions and its thirst for growth.
Since that watershed period in Atlanta’s development, Atlanta has become the cultural and business capital of the Southeast.
However, that growth has come at a price: Our roads are congested beyond our ability to absorb the additional 3 million people who will call Atlanta home by 2040.
“Our transportation investments have not kept pace. Atlanta is no longer at the forefront when it comes to transportation. Nothing short of significant new investment in fresh transportation facilities will convince others that our region is serious about preparing for the population growth that the region is expected to see,” according to Livable Communities Coalition executive director Ray Christman.
In other words, metro Atlanta has reached another important crossroads.
Metro Atlanta residents will have an opportunity to steer our shared future. The region will either pass or reject a referendum intended to raise monies to fund transportation solutions.
The Livable Communities Coalition believes the area’s transportation solutions must include “A Fair Share for Transit” in order to ensure the region‘s future vitality. A “Fair Share” should set aside up to 60 percent of proposed special tax revenues for enhancing and expanding transit in the region. A “Fair Share” should also include measures to develop safe routes to transit in order to make it easier to walk or bike to transit stops.
At stake is Atlanta’s reputation as a leader in the Southeast.
“Our peer cities have all made substantial, recent investments in public transportation, including Charlotte, Dallas, Ft. Worth, Houston, Denver and Phoenix,” Christman notes. “Atlanta was at the forefront when it bet on air transportation by building what is now the country’s busiest airport. Now, we have fallen behind our peers because they have recognized transit is essential to their futures.”
With 3 million new residents on the way, metro Atlanta can ill afford to create transportation investments that do not include transit. Traffic is already bad. This is metro Atlanta’s opportunity to do something about it.