How did you get to and from work today?
Mobility is critical in our culture, and when Phoenix voters go to the polls next month, they’ll vote on a proposition that would fund a variety of transportation projects that will keep millions of people just like you on the move.
Proposition 104 – the City of Phoenix Comprehensive Transportation Referendum – is a future-focused plan that will help us go as we grow. Phoenix’s population – 1.5 million in 2010 – is projected to reach 2.2 million by 2040 and Prop. 104 will fund new roads, bridges, sidewalks, bike lanes and bus routes while enhancing our ability to get people from place to place.
Why is this important? Investment in transportation infrastructure has real, measurable impacts on our economy. The total amount of investment along our seven-year-old light rail system has now reached $8 billion, with almost $6 billion of that coming from the private sector. That means jobs. The American Public Transportation Association reports that every dollar invested in public transportation generates four dollars in economic activity.
Planning today for tomorrow’s transportation infrastructure needs will impact our economy in a variety of other ways:
- Traffic congestion doesn’t just strangle our roadways and raise our frustration levels, it hurts job growth. A Texas A&M Transportation Institute study found a 10 percent increase in regional congestion reduced the growth of employment by 4 percent.
- The same study found Phoenix-area motorists consumed 46 million excess gallons of fuel in 2011 alone, or 20 gallons for each peak auto commuter. That’s a problem that’s only going to get worse – and take money out of your pocket or off your bottom line if you own a car or your business has a fleet – if we don’t act soon to relieve stress on our transportation grid.
- Congestion isn’t limited to rush hour anymore. Substantial delays are occurring in the midday and overnight hours, which hamper efficient production and delivery of goods for businesses.
Largely because of the recessions of the early and late 2000s, not all of the promises of the Transit 2000 Regional Transportation Plan have yet been realized. As our economy continues to rebound and our population grows, the need for transportation infrastructure will, too. We can get out in front of it today by voting yes on Proposition 104.