The Senate Study Committee on Public Transportation in the Metropolitan Atlanta Region met August 22nd at the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), where they heard testimony from experts from MARTA, GRTA, Cobb County Transit, Gwinnett Transit, and the ARC.
According to Senator and Council Board Member Brandon Beach, Chair of this Study Committee: “The purpose of the Study Committee is to look at the existing four transit systems, MARTA, GRTA, Cobb Community Transit and Gwinnett Transit to see how we can get them to come together in an efficient way for the rider in a unified fashion.”
Senator Beach and others highlighted during the hearing that there are advantages to each of these public transportation systems, and that each one is running well by itself; however, there are several changes that could be made to improve the process, and public transportation in the metro region is severely hampered by the disjointed nature of our current system. While MARTA, GRTA, Cobb County Transit, and Gwinnett Transit each may be working well, unless they work together in a seamless manner, it remains unfeasible for many individuals to use public transportation as a viable measure to travel throughout the metro Atlanta region.
To underscore this point, Senator Beach and Bernie Tokarz of Atlanta Beltline took a trip from Kennesaw State University to the Gwinnett Arena via public transportation. The trip took 3.5 hours total. To see the recap video and comments on the trip from Senator Beach and Bernie Tokarz, click here.
The Council for Quality Growth will continue to assist the Georgia Senate Study Committee and Senator Beach, utilizing the expertise of Council members to testify before the Committee and offer the perspective of the Council, based on our 29 year history in local and state-wide transportation issues. In the wake of last summer’s TSPLOST defeat, the time to find workable solutions is needed now more than ever.