A ten-year state study and public involvement process established that when the Tappan Zee Bridge is replaced, it must include public transportation; residents created a vision for the Hudson Valley where people had choices about how to get to work and move around, with a 30-mile bus rapid transit (BRT) corridor seen as crucial to ensuring that the new bridge, I-287 and the economy of the Hudson Valley don’t become gridlocked.
Governor Cuomo’s current position is that BRT will take too much time and money. In 2007, the state estimated that BRT would cost $900 million and it is unclear how the current estimate of $4-5 billion was arrived at. Critics of the Governor’s transit-less plan admit that transit will add a year to the process, but say a bridge without it will be obsolete from day one, will sentence Hudson Valley residents to decades of traffic congestion and air pollution, and that building a bridge with bus rapid transit will create more jobs now through construction, and more jobs in the future. Visit http://brtonthebridge.org, and if you have an opinion about putting transit back into this project, write the Governor (NYS State Capitol Building, Albany, NY 12224).
Editor’s Note: The author works for an organization that is speaking out about this issue.