Sunday, July 23, 2006

Trains

Last week I had dinner with a group of area residents who want to get more train service between Charlottesville and Washington. The Charlottesville Citizens for Better Rail Alternatives are promoting the extension of the Virginia Railway Express, which currently has two lines, from Union Station to Manassas and to Fredericksburg. This group, led by Thomas Kester and with the help of former councilor Meredith Richards, will be mounting a campaign this fall to get the community behind this idea. A couple years ago Charlottesville was left out when plans for the Trans-Dominion Express were made, although whether this plan will ever be realized is debatable.

Works for me - I frequently take the train to NY to see my father - and I told them I would do what I could to help.

4 Comments:

Blogger Sean Tubbs said...

People who would like to hear more about this idea can check out a presentation made by Meredith Richards last year on the topic. It's available at the Charlottesville Podcasting Network.

6:57 PM  
Blogger - PoliticalNoise said...

What would this do to local real estate and "affordable housing" when it's now convenient for people who currently live and work in the D.C. area (with it's higher pay scales) to commute daily to work and back from Charlottesville?

12:33 AM  
Blogger eirishis said...

What kind of government investment would be necessary? Expansion from either Fredericksburg or Manassas would be significant indeed for VRE, and likely pretty expensive. Would this be a case where a) the government pays the initial investment costs and users are expected to fund upkeep, b) government funds are more of a bond that will, in design, be repaid by user fees/tickets, or c) a continued government expense?

I am originally from central North Carolina, and have watched as millions of tax dollars have been spent merely to explore the issue of light rail transit throughout the Raleigh/Durham area, so I'm skeptical of plans that lack significant private investment.

8:26 PM  
Blogger David Brown said...

eirishis,

I dont know what kind of investment would be planned - but why do we invest so much government dollars into roads, but not rail?

David Brown

6:09 PM  

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