What Do YOU Think About the Proposed OCTA “Go Local” Projects?

Orange County Transportation Authority officials directed staff yesterday to begin reviewing proposed Go Local projects to Metrolink stations to major destinations. So far, 28 cities have received $100,000 grants to study potential improvements. These cities are vying for some of the $25.4 million OCTA has allocated for rail and bus shuttle-related projects and $1 million for Metrolink station and parking improvement.

So what are some of these projects vying for OCTA funds? Here, take a look:

* A Tri-City Trolley that could link residents and visitors to the major attractions in San Juan Capistrano, Dana Point and San Clemente.

* A shuttle to take patrons from Aliso Viejo Town Center to Metrolink stations in Laguna Niguel and Irvine.

* A dedicated right-of-way to link rail to business centers and later, the Great Park.

So what do you think about OCTA’s Go Local program? Are you glad to finally see more efforts to make carless commuting easier? Would you like to see a Go Local project in your community? And if so, would this encourage you to take Metrolink to work instead of contribute to the usual daily freeway nightmare?

And what do you think about the projects being considered? Would you like a “Tri City Trolley” taking you from the San Juan train station to Dana Point’s beautiful beaches? Or how about a light rail line from the Irvine station to the Great Park and the business district? What sounds appealing to you?

Go ahead. Make my day. Have your say! :-)

  2 comments for “What Do YOU Think About the Proposed OCTA “Go Local” Projects?

  1. Dick Cabesa
    February 26, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    If “Go Local” is fully implemented, it will likely more than double the current MetroLink ridership.

    The trouble is that this alone will not make much of a dent in freeway traffic.

    However, it could be worthwhile if it stops Santa Ana city planners from panting and drooling over the $140 million they want for their Renaissance (Go Local) trolley.

  2. Gus Ayer
    February 26, 2008 at 2:21 pm

    As with any transportation project, the devil’s in the details.

    There’s a billion dollars in M2 for transit projects to be named later, all with the requirement that the projects originate with local cities or groups of cities and somehow connect to Metrolink, which will be a regional spine. It was a clever compromise that included some transit option but did not specify any particular mode or route.

    It that billion is leveraged with additional funding from state bonds, from federal sources, from private investment, and combined intelligently with higher density infill development, we could conceivably have hundreds of miles of an advanced transit system like the Swedes are looking at through their Kompass group of cities. or the Ultra system that the British are building at Heathrow, or the combination of American and Dutch systems proposed for recommended for Masdar. Or something from a number of other vendors who are finally moving rapidly from concept to demonstration to pilot systems. An electric, solar-powered elevated point to point system with personal cars could not only connect passengers to MetroLink, but also move substantial numbers of passengers around locally, particularly tourists.

    Or we can have a result that looks like a scene from Ursula LeGuin’s Left Hand of Darkness, with a series of incompatible buses, trolleys, shuttles, and monorails, none of them carrying many passengers, with no real alternative to autos.

    From listening to comments at OCTA meetings, I think that some of the board members have the right ideas about how to evaluate the proposals that are submitted – Curt Pringle is particularly well-spoken about the need to make valid choices that serve large numbers of riders with low subsidies and private partnerships, and he understands that no system that is trapped in traffic at street level will be rapid..

    What I’m hoping is that OCTA takes some time and tries to keep multiple mode choices open before settling on one mode that will be used in Irvine, Anaheim, West Orange County, and scaled over time.

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