We've been pretty excited to follow the progress around transit in metro Detroit. After a couple years of public input and meetings, the Regional Transit Authority of Southeast Michigan (RTA) revealed their Master Plan for coordinated transit in metro Detroit today.
It comes down to this: Detroit doesn't have a modern transit system and the region spends far less on transit than other metro areas around the country. With so much of our lives spread out throughout the region, we have few ways to get to where we need to go. Seniors and people with disabilities need clearer options. And if citizens are going to use public transit, it has to be safe. This plan addresses these concerns.
As we've discussed before, the plan would include Bus Rapid Transit along Woodward to Pontiac, Gratiot to Mount Clemens, Washtenaw Avenue between Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti, and Michigan Avenue from downtown Detroit to the airport.
Cross-county connections would run along many major roads, including Grand River, Van Dyke, 8 Mile, 9 Mile, and Greenfield.
The services also include a commuter express, an airport express, extended local service, and increased access called Mobility Management to help users understand their options.
To fund the $4.6 billion 20-year plan, in November, the RTA will ask for a 1.2 regional transit millage, which is a $1.20 property tax for every $1,000 of the assessed value of a home. It should come out to about $95 for the average home in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, and Washtenaw Counties.
The executive summary can and should be read here.
According to the Detroit Free Press, the roll out could be lengthy and would look like this:
"RTA's proposed service implementation timeline
Express service on Woodward Ave and Gratiot Ave (Pre-BRT)
Paratransit / Mobility Management
Detroit-DTW Airport Express
8 Mile Rd Cross-County Connector
12 Mile Rd East Cross-County Connector
12 Mile Rd West Cross-County Connector
Grand River Ave Cross-County Connector
Greenfield Rd Cross-County Connector
Utica – Mt. Clemens Local Service
Ann Arbor - Canton Commuter Express
Ann Arbor - Livonia Commuter Express
Michigan Ave (Pre-BRT)
9 Mile Rd Cross-County Connector
Fort Rd / Eureka Rd Cross-County Connector
Van Dyke Rd Cross-County Connector
Middlebelt Rd Local Service
Ford Rd Local Service
I-75 Commuter Express
M-59 Commuter Express
15 Mile Rd Cross-County Connector
Jefferson Ave Cross-County Connector
Rochester Local Service
Northville – Southfield Local Service
Oakland – DTW Airport Express
Macomb – DTW Airport Express
Highland Rd / White Lake Local Service
Groesbeck Hwy Local Service
Plymouth Rd Cross-County Connector
Woodward Ave BRT
Detroit – Ann Arbor Regional Rail
Gratiot Ave BRT
M1-RAIL (RTA takeover of QLINE streetcar)
Michigan Ave BRT
Washtenaw Ave BRT"
The final plan will be approved by the RTA board in July.
What do you think, Curbed readers? Does this hit a lot of marks that we need for public transit in the area? Or is it missing something?
- Regional Master Plan Executive Summary
- A Clearer Idea of Bus Rapid Transit in Metro Detroit [Curbed Detroit]
- A Vision for Transit Along Michigan Avenue [Curbed Detroit]
- $4.6B transit plan would connect Detroit, 4 counties [Detroit Free Press]