Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on February 15th, 2012 at 1:35 pm
TriMet — and therefore transit as we know it in Portland — in trouble. The agency is under pressure to cut its budget, and so far, its seems to be leaning primarily toward service cutbacks and fare increases as the primary way to do it.
Less service and higher prices is the exact opposite direction our transit system should be headed. If that's the route TriMet takes, they will be helping start a negative spiral of lower ridership that could darken what was once Portland's very proud and bright transit legacy. Without good transit service, people who can't afford to own a car and folks who ride bicycles will have one less option for longer trips. It will make Portland a much tougher place to have a low-car existence.
Is there another way forward for TriMet? Absolutely. For more on that, I recommend reading our Q & A with transit activist Jonathan Ostar and the ongoing reporting by Portland Afoot. For now, it's important that TriMet knows that the community cares about abundant and affordable transit service.
You can help make that impression by attending the open house event tonight:
- TriMet Budget Proposal Open House
Portland Building Room C
1120 SW 5th Ave.
- TriMet budget adopted: Will cuts and fare hikes lead to more bike use?
- Event: Beaverton Transit Center Bike & Ride Open House & BTA Service Station (9/27/11)
- Open House set for N. Williams bikeway/traffic improvements
- Your input is needed at bus mall open house
- City announces streetcar loop fare discussion open houses