Here is a brief weekly update from the RTA business coalition – the voice of the regional business community on transportation.
*Please note two event reminders below.
RTA endorses Duke Energy EV pilot
RTA Gold member Duke Energy has proposed a new, statewide program to implement what would be the largest electric vehicle charging infrastructure pilot initiative in the southeast. Lisa Poger, electric transportation manager for Duke Energy, gave an excellent briefing at a recent quarterly RTA Leadership Team meeting about the proposed $76 million program, which would include charging facilities for electric vehicles — including transit and school buses — along major roadways, and even in the home. A major concern when considering an electric vehicle is “range anxiety”; the breadth of this program should help alleviate that concern and increase the adoption of EVs. The RTA Leadership Team endorsed the initiative and we have submitted a letter to the NC Public Utilities Commission in support of Duke Energy’s filing on this matter.
Let’s “combine” Raleigh and Durham
One question that frequently comes up in economic development and transportation conversations is whether or not to unify our two metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) in the Triangle region. While I don’t have the answer to that, one communication option for the Research Triangle region may be to refer to the cities of Raleigh and Durham collectively as the “R&D cities” of North Carolina. Doing so would of course speak to our market’s prowess in both research and development as well as collaboration. This week’s Thursday Thoughts at 3 provides a somewhat playful blog post on this concept; you can offer your thoughts here.
Wake County may get border-to-border BRT
Wake County’s transit plan — endorsed by the RTA in January 2016 and approved by the voters in November 2016 — included 20 miles of bus rapid transit infrastructure and service, while assuming no state funding contribution. Recent votes by our region’s metro planning organizations may unlock around $100 million in unanticipated state funds over the next few years to construct and expand the Cary-Raleigh-Garner bus rapid transit corridors by extending service west to Morrisville near the Durham County border, and east to Clayton in Johnston County. This new state funding would be great news for enhancing transit service, bringing the region’s proposed BRT network to more than 40 miles of service.
Early RSVP deadline this Friday, May 24:
2019 Tour to Richmond, Arlington, and Alexandria, Va. – June 20-21
Bus rapid transit, commuter rail, equitable development, and more.
Priority registration for RTA members only until June 1:
2019 Transportation Breakfast – July 12
The possibility of a hyperloop future, feat. Virgin Hyperloop One team members.
Thank you for being a part of the business coalition advancing regional transportation! Let’s get moving,
Joe Milazzo II, PE
RTA Executive Director