Superbowl: A Missed Opportunity? September 6th, 1995
– Bill Lindley
At the Joint Legislative Study Committee meeting on 6 September 1995, it became quite apparent that unless some last minute funding were to appear, there would be no demonstration train program around the time of Superbowl ’96. As this newsletter goes to press, the likelihood of such funding is decreasing rapidly.
Although this may seem a failure, reflect for a moment on the exposure that passenger trains have received in the press during this program’s consideration. Some awareness has been raised, at least, that railroad tracks do exist within the Phoenix metropolitan area. People have heard that it might be possible to run a regional rail system without the massive investments of a $10 billion Valtrans system, but rather with modest investments creating a small starter system.
Where should ARPA go from here? A demonstration period for regional rail still makes sense during Phoenix’s seasons of pollution alerts and winter visitors. The momemtum gained for passenger rail should continue and grow, not be lost.