Mayor supports VIA's plan that includes light rail

Bus rapid transit in its own lane; light rail transit could come to SA

By Chris Shadrock - Web - News Producer , Steve Spriester - Anchor

SAN ANTONIO - Mayor Ron Nirenberg has a message for VIA: stop planning and start digging.

Nirenberg, who ran on a platform that included mass transit, is a strong proponent of rail connecting the city of San Antonio.

"We need to have mass transit options,” Nirenberg said. “These are all the functions of a strong city with a strong economy and that's what we need to get, we need to get past the point of planning and start digging very soon."

RELATED: VIA needs public input about rapid transit including possible light rail

VIA unveiled its plans last week that link different activity centers around the city. The mayor said with studies showing 150 vehicles added to San Antonio roads every day, there needs to be a way to clear congestion and give people different ways to get around. He also knows that rail lines will be a tough sell.

"People need to realize this is not going to be an easy process,” he said. “But it will be directed by the citizens of this community, who need better than what they have now, and it will be voter-approved. At the end of the day, we are not going to build mass transit in the city of San Antonio unless voters approve it."

There’s no price tag for the VIA’s plan. There will also be a community workshop to discuss the plan on Thursday. To see the study details and to participate, visit www.viavision2040.com.

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