Bronx rail project a new frontier for transit-oriented development

Executive Director , Shannon Binns, was quoted in The Bond Buyer.

Whether to add rail lines where population now exists or build with future development in mind begs a chicken-or-egg question.

It surfaced in Charlotte, North Carolina’s most populous city. The Charlotte Area Transit System chose to route its new east-west light Silver Line to Charlotte Douglas International Airport along Interstate 277 north of the central business district rather than connect a tunnel directly to that district.

CATS leaders say they want to replicate the $2.7 billion worth of development along the existing north-south Blue Line.

While system officials cited tunnel costs and the promise of further development along I-277 near a neighborhood called NoDa, short for North Davidson Street, transit advocates protested. Shannon Binns, executive director of the smart-growth organization Sustain Charlotte, said commuters would balk at a route that would force them to walk several blocks or change trains.

“Transit — first and foremost, we believe — should serve riders and minimize travel time,” Binns said. “In this case, the ridership was not the top goal. It was economic development and we think that’s backwards.”

Full story here.

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