Ann Arbor Area Community News
It seems to be a heady time for transit enthusiasts, with a number of noteworthy announcements released recently.
AATA has approved a market research contract to study the feasibility of becoming a regional transit authority and passing a transit millage across much or all of Washtenaw County. Neither a specific service plan nor a specific funding level have been set – the study is intended to measure interest. The Ann Arbor News cites AATA’s Greg Cook as estimating the regional millage at less than half a mill. (Ann Arbor voters currently pay about 2 mills for AATA.)
Mayor Hieftje hosted a tour of the rails north of Ann Arbor, pictured, for a group of politicians, businesspeople, and transportation experts last Thursday, in support of his vision for commuter transit service running parallel to US-23. While the Ann Arbor Railroad’s cooperation has not been secured for the rail segment within the city, the rails from Ann Arbor north are owned by MDOT and licensed to the Great Lakes Central Railroad, which controls rail running all the way to Traverse City, and has expressed, beyond a willingness, a dream of running passenger service along that entire route.
Meanwhile, SEMCOG is expected to provide an update on its Ann Arbor to Detroit rapid transit study process at their General Assembly meeting, underway as I write; expect a link to appear as soon as one is available.
EDIT 27 JUNE: MDOT has posted an online survey asking for feedback on transportation spending priorities, including several questions which ask about mode choice between driving, transit, walking, etc.
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