Metro Jacksonville has been fighting the good fight for some time in trying bring light and commuter rail to North Florida. If it had not been for the gang over at the Metro, JTA would still be shoving their idiotic BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) system down our throats. But because of the work done by these guys JTA has been forced to go back to the planning board and do feasibly and cost studies for rail systems prior to moving ahead with their current plans to move Jacksonville yet another 20 years behind the rest of nation.
I'm posting this here so that you the cyclist can stay not only informed. But also so that you can speak up and hopefully will get involved to make sure that any and all transportation plans include bikes. It is vital that we make certain all rail and any other transportation plans include bike paths to and from the planned stations, along with secure bike storage lockers at those same stations and most importantly require bikes be allowed those on the trains or buses.
You can read the update from Metro Jacksonville Here.
We are a long way from actually seeing any train system come to fruition. But you can do your part right now by taking a few seconds to help secure the funding needed. Sign this petition from Walk Score and Transportation America asking Congress to allocate more money for alternative transportation which will also include cycling infrastructure into the new 2009 Transportation Bill.
The Petition reads:
"Help reduce our vulnerability to oil prices by tripling—or more—the share of funding for walking, biking and public transit.
Build a world-class rail network—both between cities and within them—that links our communities and transports people and goods more efficiently.
Require that roads are safe for everyone using them—including pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit users, as well as motorists."
While we are on the subject Transportation, NPR's program NOW has an outstanding video titled, Driven To Despair. It is the first installment in "Blueprint America," a year-long, PBS-wide series focusing on the nation's infrastructure. It is truly worth viewing.