Home Transit News Light Rail / Streetcar The right transit plan at the right time

The right transit plan at the right time

BY CLAY CHASTAIN / Special to The Star


In 2001, the Kansas City Regional Transit Alliance stated that light rail, not streetcars or bus rapid transit, was the preferred mode of transit to modernize Kansas City’s transportation system. Question 2 on the Aug. 8 ballot, which I placed via petition drive, proposes a rapid citywide rail system.

It is, in effect, a less costly junior light rail system that would operate the city’s existing streetcar system at far faster speeds, with far fewer stops and in dedicated right-of-ways — transit greenways — separated from traffic.

Integrated into those beautiful lower-cost rail greenways, which would utilize a few city streets, a couple of medians of city boulevards and a smidgen of the city’s vast parkland, would be a bike lane positioned on one side of the double tracks and a pedestrian lane on the other. The rapid rail system would directly serve the central Northland, downtown, Union Station, midtown, the Plaza-UMKC cultural district, the East Side, the Truman Sports Complex, the historic Northeast, the Kansas City Zoo and Swope Park.

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