Transit 101: Why Nashville & Not Other Cities?

Posted at 11:13 AM, Apr 30, 2018

Throughout the past week, we've been answering your questions on the Nashville transit plan leading up to Election Day on Tuesday. Here's a few remaining questions that viewers have been asking in our final installment of Transit 101. 

Why does this only include Nashville and not the surrounding counties? 

It's the way the IMPROVE Act was written by state lawmakers. It only allows for referendums county by county and requires a plan be in place for people to vote. 

So, the plan could only include Nashville. However, the city hopes the surrounding counties connect to Nashville's bigger corridors with their own referendums in the future. 

Nearby leaders are very interested in that but it'll be up to their voters.  

If the plan passes, what happens first? 

Bus changes would start immediately. Light rail will take a few years to build, which would only start after many community meetings. Neighbors would have input on how the rail fits into the roadways, what it looks like and where stops should be, etc.

What happens if the plan passes and then an anti-transit mayor gets elected? 

Any major changes he or she would want to make would also have to pass voter referendum. 

Such as: what modes of transportation and which major corridors are included on the map. But because not everything is set in stone, they would have a role in helping figure out logistics in each community. 

How would the plan affect Nashville in the future? 

Anyone who says they can definitively answer that has an angle. Without a crystal ball, this exact plan has never been tried in this exact city with our land mass, density and people.  

We've been giving folks all the facts that are available but we can't predict the future or how many people will use it, getting cars off the road.  

Everyone has to decide for themselves if that 1-cent sales tax increase is a worthwhile investment for the different modes of transportation the city gets in return.