The top transit priority — and top overall priority — for the Regional Transportation Alliance business coalition is to support the development of an effective regional transit plan for Wake County and the successful passage of the Wake transit referendum.
In December 2015 Wake County released its recommended transit plan. In January 2016 the Regional Transportation Alliance business coalition formally endorsed the plan. We have posted FAQs about the Wake Transit plan here.
Regarding the Durham-Orange corridor, GoTriangle completed its environmental study and received a Record of Decision for the proposed light rail corridor that would connect UNC Hospital with Duke University and Downtown Durham by 2025-26. RTA applauds the completion of this milestone. Our focus now is to have the light rail funding cap repealed by the legislature. We also recently reviewed the potential of ensuring and accelerating regional connectivity via dual use of the corridor by bus rapid transit.
The Regional Transportation Alliance business coalition approved the recommendations below for regional transit initiatives in summer 2015. You can also click here to learn more about the history of business community engagement on transit through the RTA.
Current RTA position on regional transit
The Regional Transportation Alliance business coalition approved the following recommendations for regional transit initiatives in summer 2015.
Overall RTA recommendations on current regional transit initiatives
- Ensure strong regional connectivity
- Serve us both now and as we grow
- Leverage funding support from all levels of government
Specific recommendations for Wake Transit initiative
- Support the inclusion of a solid frequent network
- Encourage focus on speed, quality, practicality, scalability, and permanence
- Support multiple BRT corridors, including bus lanes where appropriate
- Support freeway BRT on I-40 and I-540
- Ensure we don’t overspend on infrastructure for non-frequent service
Specific recommendations for Durham-Orange corridor
- RTA endorses dual use of portions of the proposed light rail corridor by bus rapid transit to ensure and accelerate strong regional connectivity and enhance operational efficiency.
- Sections with dual use would operate as a transitway, similar to the proposed dual use guideway segment east of Durham station.
- Dual use of portions of the Durham-Orange corridor (pdf) would have several benefits, including:
– Optimize use of proposed corridor
– Increase transit ridership along corridor guideway via interlining
– Higher transit frequency to minimize patron delays
– Strengthen regional connections and reduce transfers
– Allow more travel paths to utilize corridor
– Direct connections from Downtown Chapel Hill, Carrboro with/to Southpoint, RTP, RDU, Wake Co.
– Leverage existing and future road infrastructure
– May enhance economic development within and/or beyond route
The Regional Transportation Alliance business coalition provided these recommendations to our regional transit partners, and we will continue to highlight these recommendations to our members and others to optimize and accelerate our regional transit future.