When does the price of gasoline get so painful that drivers park their cars and look for the nearest bus stop or rail station? Many in North Texas say that time has arrived. And a new study of driver attitudes – plus increasingly crowded buses, trains and station parking lots – suggests they may be right.There is one of these...
High gas prices are pushing more people onto buses and subways, straining transit agencies trying to meet the demand.
Like other consumers, the agencies are also paying more for fuel — 44% more this year than last, according to a survey of 96 transit agencies to be released Friday by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA).That double hit means bus and train operators are raising fares, cutting services and delaying improvements. Almost half of bus operators and more than two-thirds of rail operators have increased fares. About a fifth are cutting service.
These aren't choices we should have to make and its unfortunate that our the majority of our transportation system is tied up in oil. It'll be interesting to see how resources shift as prices go up. Will fund transit with higher fares as some have already started to or will it come out of a budget for new roads. The paradigms are shifting, but perhaps not that much.For the future, when the grid starts to get changed into alternative energy like solar, part of the capital program for smaller cities might include provisions for electrification of heavier ridership bus lines. Now that oil and diesel prices are so high, it's possible to pay off some of the capital cost over time of this incremental improvement. Since this would include some smaller cities, it would be a great opportunity to include more areas into capital funding programs. It certainly would make more lawmakers happy that they are serving their constituents and make available funding from a carbon economy.