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Streetcar boosters believe the referendums, if approved, could shift the conversation away from its early troubles. When the first trolley rolled out in December 2014, the project was already more than a year and a half behind schedule, and construction costs had ballooned from an estimated $69 million to more than $98 million, with federal grants covering less than half the price tag.
As mayor of this Gwinnett County city of 16,000, Johnson has chaired the Atlanta Regional Roundtable and pushed the $7 billion transportation tax measure (T-SPLOST) that metro Atlanta voters ultimately rejected in 2012. He won his fifth two-year term in November.
Elected in a December 2013 runoff, Fleisch, a former CNN producer, became the first female mayor of this Fayette County planned community of 35,000, best known for its network of golf cart paths.
Members of the Georgia Institute of Transportation Engineers convened today at the East Roswell Recreation Center to hear a T-SPLOST debriefing from two senior GDOT officials, deputy commissioner Todd Long and engineering director Russell McMurry. The group of engineers from private firms and local governments across metro Atlanta meets monthly, usually at Mary Mac's, and demonstrates that regionalism is alive in at least one arena.
"Over the last fifty years, metropolitan Atlanta overlooked neglected but valuable urban land in search of easy development in surrounding forests and farmland. More recently, the negative effects of urban sprawl have led to new development in in town Atlanta. But without providing an adequate public transportation system for our growing in population, congestion and pollution will diminish our cherished quality of life.
On July 31, the ten-county Atlanta region will vote together for the first time on a penny sales tax for transportation improvements. If approved, the tax will raise $8.5 billion over ten years to fund a very specific list of road and transit projects.
Anyone who rides MARTA semi-regularly knows to keep eye contact to a minimum and avoid conversation except in the direst circumstance ("Is this Doraville or North Springs?"). It’s not rudeness. It’s just the way one behaves on public transit.
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