Yeah, Public Transportation sometimes sucks. You have to find out what time the bus runs before you go anywhere, the bus sometimes smells like an armpit, and it isn’t as comfortable as sitting in an expensive car and sitting in traffic for four hours a day. But I don’t mind it for a number of reasons. I don’t pay car insurance just in case I bump into some idiot. I don’t have to get my oil changed just because a little sticker tells me to. And I don’t have to hear a mechanic try and tell me that my car will explode if I don’t change out my headlights. And, hey, look at that! If money is given to more public transportation jobs, we might some more jobs. Neato! From the Wired:
By splitting public transportation and highway funding equally, Schroeer said, the bill could provide 71,415 more job-months of work than it would by favoring highway spending. That is enough work to give 6,000 more people full-time year-round employment. According to SGA, public transportation spending leads more directly to job growth than highway spending for several reasons. First, less money is spent acquiring land, which means more money is spent actually building something. Second, all those buses, trains and subways need people to operate them and maintain the infrastructure. And third, public transit requires a workforce with more diverse skills than highway construction. Even better, Schroeer said, public transit can help save jobs because it allows people to get to work — and those are jobs Smart Growth America didn’t include in its analysis. When transit programs are cut or don’t exist to begin with, “there’s a negative impact on folks’ mobility to get to work, to get to education,” Schroeer said. “It’s part of the fabric of communities, whether you use it or not.”
The article doesn’t mention how it can help the environment, but it can. Cities are greener because more people take buses or subways or, and I know this might be crazy talk, but people WALK places. I know! So weird! Hopefully, articles like this one can generate support for a greener, and more economic, way of life.