TRANSPORTATION - 2006
The League of Women Voters of Texas support a transportation system to move people and goods that includes a variety of transportation modes, with emphasis on increased transportation services and other viable alternatives; that is efficient, convenient, and cost effective; that services all segments of the population and diverse geographic needs; that minimizes the harmful effects on the environment, is integrated with land use, and is supported by extensive public education.
Planning for transportation projects should be accomplished by:
- cooperation and coordination among agencies and different levels of government
- timely, informed citizen input in the planning process
- selection of projects based on needs assessment
- analyses of alternate routes and modes
- analysis of environmental impact
- measures to provide public transportation to groups who do not have or cannot drive a private auto (elderly, disabled, youth, low-income)
- policies encouraging the integration of various modes of transportation to promote seamless systems.
Transportation and land use planning should include the following strategies in order to influence travel behavior:
- parking fees
- alternatives to single occupancy vehicle travel (HOV lanes, cars/van pools, bicycle lanes, etc.)
- flexible lanes for high traffic times
- land use policies to encourage mixed use development coordinated with public transportation
Construction, maintenance and/or expansion projects should be funded through:
- Tolls on new highways
- regional rail authorities with taxing ability
- federal funding
- usage taxes for commercial vehicles
- local user taxes
- state gas and user taxes
- private sources (developers, etc.)
To alleviate congestion on Texas highways, existing routes should be expanded to include added passenger rail service and expanded freight rail lines. New routes should connect major Texas centers of population, preferably by rail.
This study was adopted at Convention 2003 as a three-year study, after being recommended by seven Leagues, several of which had local transportation positions. The focus was on current public transportation systems, future needs and funding availability. Additionally members focused on the impact of public transportation on air quality and land use, and the need for regional public transportation networks. Consensus was completed and adopted by the Board in January, 2006.
Focus: The impact of public transportation on air quality, land use, and social indicators. The need for regional public transportation networks.
- Current public transportation systems
- Future needs
- Funding availability
- Community resources and support
Study Committee: Edith Jones (Tarrant Co.) Chair, Nan Clayton (Austin), Betty Hill, Brazos Valley), Phyllis Ingram (San Antonio Area), Kathleen Matsumura (Dallas), Pat Schneider (Midland), Genie Mitchell (Irving), Martha Murphree (Houston)