The Regional Transportation Authority has unanimously approved plans for a $5.9 billion mass transit system in Middle Tennessee.
The plan was approved Wednesday morning by the RTA board. The Metro Transit Authority board was scheduled to hear the recommendations on Thursday.
View MTA Recommended Plan
The plan, nMotion, was created by Middle Tennessee residents, and is more of a framework of recommendations than a detailed, in-depth projection of transit plans.
Mayor Megan Barry said, "Today the RTA voted on n motion which is a 6 billion dollar investment in transit for Nashville. It takes place over the next 25 years and what you heard today though is all of us in this region want to see that timeline moved way up.
Barry said they are still trying to figure out funding.
Barry said, "Clearly we've got transit issues in this region we've got to see people moving faster and I think the plan lays it out and what we need to do is accelerate it."
The proposal would increase not only the number of buses but also the routes around the city.
Dais Allen said, "The buses run frequently out there during the week but on the weekends they run every hour and it's a hastle."
Allen rides the bus every day.
Allen said, "This is what I rely on to get from point A to point B."
She said she has to walk to some destinations and the stops are far away from where she's going.
Allen said, "Cuz a lot of places like jobs or whatever, they're not on the bus line. And it's hard to get to work."
The plan includes express buses that will run on the shoulder of busy streets.
There would also be rails created to run from downtown to North Nashville, Clarksville, and Ashland City.
Sarah Grundy said, "They may live out far and not have transportation!"
Grundy said she wouldn't mind if her taxes increased to accommodate the costs.
She hopes the MTA board will follow suit, and approve the plan.
Grundy said, "Vote for more transit! I mean we need it. I mean there's a lot of people that have work and can't get back and forth. I mean a vote would really help."
The money is predicted to come from federal, state, and local budgets, but funding will be determined by the end of the year.
The community had a 30-day window to comment on the recommendations. Meanwhile, more than 18,000 people were part of the community input process that started a year and a half ago.
The public meeting Thursday is at 2:30p.m. at the Music City Center.