Sign up FAST! Login

How Denver Is Becoming the Most Advanced Transit City in the West


Stashed in: Transportation!, Colorado

To save this post, select a stash from drop-down menu or type in a new one:

"Denver is a car town," says Phil Washington, who has been general manager of the Regional Transportation District, metro Denver's rail provider, since 2009. 

.................................................

"From the start, we made it clear we weren't competing with the car," says Washington. "And we explained, to the average Joe, that for only four cents on most ten dollar purchases, he'd be getting a whole lot of new transportation."

.................................................

But in a state that recently voted to legalize the retail sale of marijuana, change is clearly in the wind. Ten years ago, Denver's new mayor (and current Colorado governor) John Hickenlooper began to ramp up a campaign to convince voters to approve an ambitious expansion of the region's embryonic light rail network. A similar plan — fuzzy on such key details as routes and cost — had been defeated in a 1997 referendum. In 2004, the region's voters approved $4.7 billion of new debt for the FasTracks program. The plan, to add 121 miles of new commuter and light-rail tracks to the region, 18 miles of bus rapid transit lanes, 57 new rapid transit stations, and 21,000 park-and-ride spots, was approved 58-to-42, precisely reversing the results of the '97 referendum. (The pricetag has since risen to $7.8 billion.)

I wonder what changed their minds in 7 years.

I mean it's a good idea so I don't understand why they voted it down in 1997.

You May Also Like: