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Regional Transit and Funding in Southeast Michigan By Megan Owens Presented by Ruth Johnson Transportation Riders United November 2013.

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Presentation on theme: "Regional Transit and Funding in Southeast Michigan By Megan Owens Presented by Ruth Johnson Transportation Riders United November 2013."— Presentation transcript:

1 Regional Transit and Funding in Southeast Michigan By Megan Owens Presented by Ruth Johnson Transportation Riders United November 2013

2 Transportation Riders United Nonprofit Advocacy Group Founded in 1999 Mission: Improve and Promote Transit throughout Greater Detroit to  Restore Urban Vitality  Ensure Transportation Equity  Improve Quality of Life TRU Works to  Improve Bus Service  Remove Barriers to Rapid Transit  Promote Smart Transportation Investments

3 Why Transit?

4 Transit Connects People To work To school To friends To family To groceries To job training To doctors’ appointments To other local stores To church To volunteer And other daily needs and activities

5 Transit Benefits Individuals Saves Thousands of Dollars – Vehicle cost, gas, repairs, parking, insurance = $8,000/year – vs. Transit pass = $800/year Money saved can be reinvested in local economy Less Stress Avoid traffic and road rage -Time to read, work, relax Less Traffic - Exponentially less congestion

6 Transit Supports Communities Ensure Independence and Community Participation for all – Many people are too young, too old, or physically unable to drive Healthier Living through Physical Activity – Walking to and from transit stations – Compact, walkable neighborhoods encourage physical activity

7 Transit Enables Sustainability Decrease Oil Dependence – Americans using transit for 10% of travel would cut Middle East oil dependence by 40% Help Prevent Global Warming – Transportation produces 1/3 of all global warming pollution – Transit uses half the energy and produces half the global warming pollution of cars

8 Rapid Transit Promotes Prosperity Urban Revitalization – Many people prefer to live, work, shop and play near transit – Permanent transit lines spur billions in private investment in condos, shops, restaurants and more Job Creation – Many rapid transit projects create over 10,000 jobs Direct construction and transit operation jobs, plus jobs from new development along transit lines 600% Return on Investment – Every dollar invested in public transit returns on average six dollars in local economic activity

9 Transit is Economic Development In Dallas, in the six years following DART’s opening: $3.3 billion in private investment near DART stations Property values rose 39-53% faster near transit stations 32,000 jobs created within 6 years Local property tax revenue annually: $78 million

10 Existing conditions – built around cars, not people Most Michigan Development is for Cars

11 We Could Develop Differently Mix uses and build closer to the sidewalk

12 Slow down traffic and make streets for people, not just cars We Could Develop Differently

13 Increase density by focusing development We Could Develop Differently

14 Density supports more transportation options Transit Supports Vibrant Communities

15 Transit-Oriented Development 1.A mix of commercial and residential 2.Buildings close together and close to the street 3.Well-designed for easy walking 4.Frequent transit

16 Compact Development Near Transit, Lower Density Elsewhere Source: EPA and WMATA Arlington, VA provides a variety of housing and lifestyle options

17 Seniors & Empty Nesters Want TOD 80% of Americans over age 45 decide where to live based on proximity to the things they need as they become less mobile – AARP National Survey Seniors Want Options: Housing Transportation Seniors Want Access: Services Entertainment Public Spaces

18 Young Professionals Want TOD Young professionals are seeking vibrant mixed use neighborhoods near transit “To retain and attract millennials, the region and state need to create more of the urban, mixed-use neighborhoods they seek.” - Laurie Volk, Market Analyst with Zimmerman/Volk Associates Inc. talking about Southeast Michigan

19 So transit provides enormous benefits. Why is transit in greater Detroit so bad? What is needed to make it better?

20 Service Area Population (millions)

21 Annual Vehicle Revenue Hours Per Person

22 Unlimited Weekday Trips Per Person

23 Transit Funding Per Capita

24 Our region’s transit is severely underfunded. We must invest in better transit.

25 Local Funding for Public Transit

26 Local Funding Sources Used Nationwide Fuel taxes General revenue Property Taxes Sales and Use Taxes Payroll and employer taxes

27 DDOT Funding Sources Operating funds (millions) Local Funds = City General Fund

28 Local Funding

29 Funding Sources Operating funds (millions) Local Funds = Property Tax Millage

30 Local Funding

31 Funding Sources Operating funds (millions) Local Funds = Property Tax plus other

32 AATA Local Funding

33 Public Transit is Underfunded Provides essential service but declining funding Underfunded compared to other regions and need Millage dedicated, but general service funding is not

34 RTA Overview

35 Past RTA Barriers Decades of failed efforts at regional transit authorities  1970s  DARTA 1  DARTA 2 TRU Analyzed Reasons:  Regional divisions  Lack of political leadership  Unwillingness to invest  Petty partisan politics

36 How Did RTA Happen? Detailed negotiations to develop bills everyone could live with:  Gov. Snyder & Schornack  Mayor Bing  Oakland, Macomb and Wayne Executives  Senate Transportation Chair Casperson (R- UP)  Sen. Johnson (D-Detroit) and Sen. Warren (D-Ann Arbor)  Unions  Riders Built diverse and powerful support:  Detroit Chamber  Tourism Bureau  SEMCOG / MAC  Detroit City Council  County commissions  MML

37 How Did RTA Happen? Strong, ongoing advocacy from transit supporters  Overwhelmingly positive testimony at packed hearings  Multiple contacts with all legislators  Advocacy from statewide partners  Thousands of calls and s Governor and influential supporters twisted arms and got it done

38 RTA: What Is It? Purpose: coordinate, oversee and improve transit for Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw, and Wayne Counties, including Detroit  Other counties can join  NO opt-outs from RTA  Oversee current providers (SMART, DDOT, DTC, and AATA)  NOT replace or take them over  Plan, fund, and operate a Rolling Rapid Transit service along major corridors  Routes, stops, funding, federal approval, technical details all still to be decided

39 RTA: What Will It Do?  Approved past regional transit plans  2008 RTCC plan and 2012 Washtenaw Transit Master Plan  Need to update and combine  Can propose to the voters new funding for regional transit  Likely a vehicle registration fee of $20-40/year  Earliest November 2014

40 RTA: Who Runs It? Board of Directors: – Chair, representing Governor: Paul Hillegonds – Representing Detroit: Lisa Franklin – Macomb County: Julie Gatti and Roy Rose – Oakland County: Steven Potter and Matt Wirgau – Washtenaw County: Richard Murphy and Liz Gerber – Wayne County: Curtis Ivery and Mark Gaffney  Just hired John Hertel as CEO  Formerly RTCC, soon leaving SMART  He’ll hire other staff.  Advisory Committees  Providers’ AC  Citizens’ AC

41 What It’s NOT Perfect A Silver Bullet Solution A Merger A Takeover Funded

42 Next Steps  RTA needs to combine and update it’s the regional transit plan  Needs public input for an effective plan  RTA can put on the November ballot a vehicle registration fee  Must be approved by voters  $20-40 extra per year  Raise $100 million for expanded and improved transit Could result in: Improved coordination Improved local bus service Bus Rapid Transit on Woodward and Gratiot Commuter Train to Detroit, Airport, Ann Arbor

43 Contacting TRU: Office in Guardian Building 500 Griswold, Suite 1650, downtown Detroit “Support Detroit Transit” on Facebook


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