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A Transportation Schism in the Atlanta Region

When suburban voters and political leaders oppose transit funding sales taxes, the entire region experiences the consequences. Atlanta is the latest case study in this political dynamic.
April 5, 2016, 11am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Maria Saporta writes an editorial about the emerging "micro-regionalism" approach to transportation planning in the Atlanta area, growing from conflicting approaches to transportation investment funding schemes between county governments.

In November, voters in the City of Atlanta likely will get an opportunity to increase their investment in MARTA by a half-penny sales tax for 40 years – adding to the penny it passed in 1971.

At the same time, the rest of Fulton County likely will get to vote for .75 of a penny for transportation projects – most going to roads – for the next five years.

According to Saporta, that kind of "micro-regionalism" is a far cry from a regional approach to transportation.

Saporta rests the blame on the leadership of cities in Fulton County, who have put the breaks "on a plan that should be serving the entire metro area." Now the future of a regional transportation plan is in doubt, and the city of Atlanta, rather than the entire region, will have a competitive advantage in transit.

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Published on Monday, April 4, 2016 in Saporta Report
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