An Indictment of Public Transportation
After last Thursday's Metro board meeting, the one at which the directors began to consider cutting service to balance the next transit budget, several board members shared their early morning experience in riding the system.
Chris Zimmerman of Arlington said he had used a Route 16 bus for part of his trip to Metro's downtown Washington headquarters. The route is among many that the transit authority staff suggested the board consider for cutbacks.
Catherine Hudgins of Fairfax County told us her arrival at the board meeting had been delayed because she, along with thousands of others, had been stuck on the Orange Line because of a work train derailment. Staff had suggested a money-saving plan to widen the gap between trains, a move that would certainly lead to more crowding.
Some other board members feel their time is too precious to share it with Metro riders. When you're in a hurry and you need to get someplace, transit isn't really convenient, they say.
As reporter Lena H. Sun showed in Sunday's Post (Metro Use a Rarity for Half of Board), the board members are leading by example. Their example is telling us that we need not be riveted by Metro's budget crisis. If transit service is cut back, so what? We can always drive, just like the Metro board members.
What do you think? Got a good reason not to follow their example?
[We could talk about that today at 1 p.m. Join me for our biweekly online discussion about all our local traffic and transit issues. Use this link if you'd like to submit a question or comment in advance.]
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