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Rail likely option in 2020 transit bond



Light rail has emerged as the likely candidate for an ambitious transit plan that could be put before voters this November.


Capital Metro is proposing the city build two new transit lines that could reach $10.3 billion to build if the Austin City Council opts to pursue light rail, a type of urban train system.


That’s far more expensive than a bus rapid transit system that also is proposed under Project Connect, Capitol Metro’s transit vision for Austin’s future. However, a Cap Metro analysis found the system would reach its capacity in 2040.


In comparison, rail would offer much more potential for passenger growth. Maximum capacity for ridership on a bus rapid transit system would be reached less than a decade from when the system is completed — a fact that doomed it as an option.


Bus rapid transit “does not work ... and the analysis shows that now,” Council Member Jimmy Flannigan said. “It doesn’t have the capacity we need.”


By Philip Jankowski

Austin-American Statesman

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