Outlying communities must weigh benefits, costs of transit plan - WSMV News 4

Outlying communities must weigh benefits, costs of transit plan

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

Outlying Nashville communities must weigh benefits, cost of proposed transit plan.

The vote for the future of Nashville transit is roughly two weeks away, and some community members feel the plan doesn’t do enough in their neighborhoods.

In Bellevue, getting to a bus stop for some people is more than a 10-minute stroll.

“I walked two miles from my house,” said bus rider Micaela Bertrand. “The bus doesn’t come out to neighborhoods very much.”

Bertrand said Bellevue needs better access to buses, and she believes Nashville’s proposed $5.4 billion transit plan for light rail and rapid bus lines won’t help much.

“I would vote for it if it reached out here,” said Bertrand. “If it reached down by the railroad tracks and traveled all up and down Highway 100, I would totally vote for it. But it doesn’t.”

Along Highway 100, cars rolled by two signs for and against transit. By Tim Akers’ home, there’s only signs against transit.

“What do I get out of the plan? And as the plan states as it is, other than some additional bus routes, there’s nothing that actually increasing the quality of life for me. So, why I won’t be supporting it right now?” said Akers.

Akers worked from home Thursday, and to get him on a bus or light rail, the transit plan would have to reach farther into Bellevue.

“The problem is not congestion in Second Avenue. The problem for us is congestion to get to downtown,” said Akers. “Right now, as the plan states, it helps nothing with that traffic congestion.”

Just getting the wheels turning is enough for others in Bellevue who may not use the transit system but like the option.

“You’ve got to start somewhere,” said Tricia Young. “If you look at the property tax number or the numbers and how it’s going to affect you, you’re not going to vote for it. But if you‘re community-minded, then you’re going to vote for it.”

The 55-page plan includes transit centers and better bus service. Residents in outlying communities will have to decide if they think it’s worth it.

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