News, updates, commentary and more from BikeAthens. BikeAthens is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Athens, GA. BikeAthens promotes transportation and land-use policies that improve alternative modes of transportation, including pedestrian, cycling, and public transit options. The mission of our organization is to make alternative transportation a practical, convenient, and safe option for all citizens of Athens-Clarke County.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

GA loses out on even more transit funding

As if the loss of high speed rail funding wasn't painful enough, AJC comes in with this late hit.

The Federal Transit Administration on Tuesday published a list of 27 transit projects recommended for $1.8 billion in federal funding. Georgia wasn’t on it.

It couldn’t be. Georgia had no proposals up for consideration, FTA spokesman Paul Griffo said.

In contrast to the high-speed rail grants last week, these recommendations would fund development of local transit projects such as new bus and streetcar lines.

Rail advocates last week blamed Georgia’s loss of high-speed rail money on the state’s past indifference to rail transit.

"If you don’t have operating money, nobody’s going to give you the money you need to build lines," said Lee Biola, president of Citizens for Progressive Transit. "Other states are investing in other ways of traveling [than by car] and they are becoming competitors when it comes to luring businesses and high-tech workers to their states."

If it wasn't clear before, it's clear now: Georgia's old boy network of back-slapping car dealers, sprawl builders, and road pavers will keep us mired in gridlocked traffic, smog, and ugly landscapes until we demand something better.

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