The bus rapid transit system proposed by Montgomery County planners for major county routes received a blow on Monday: Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett said the system would be too expensive to build, The (Washington) Examiner reported.
"Instead, Leggett suggested a significantly smaller system with fewer bells and whistles than the proposed high-end bus rapid transit, or BRT, system," The Examiner added.
The planners' proposal was for a 10-route system, which would have cost less than the 23-route bus rapid transit system proposed by the all-volunteer Transit Task Force last spring. The task force put its system's price tag at $1.8 billion, while Montgomery County Master Planner Larry Cole figured the 23-route system would have cost closer to $8 or $10 billion, The Examiner reported.
But the county can afford neither a 23-route nor a 10-route system, Leggett said, The Examiner wrote. To build even a smaller-scale system, Leggett "would pay for those routes by delaying other county construction projects and reallocating the money, though he wouldn't say which projects he would delay," The Examiner added.
Also, Leggett said that taxes might need to be raised to pay for the bus system, The Examiner reported.
What do you think? Can the county afford a bus rapid transit system? Would it be useful? Tell us in the comments.