SAFETEA LU: Getting Busy!
While Kansas City and Detroit try to figure out what the transit future should look like, and while SEPTA in Philadelphia deals with a strike, others are seizing the day, now that SAFETEA LU has been signed by President Bush.
For some, like Valley Metro in Phoenix, UTA Commuter Rail in Utah, DART in Dallas, the Eastside Project at Los Angeles County MTA, Portland's Tri Met commuter rail (!), Sounder Light Rail in Seattle, and even the New York City Subway, it seems money cannot come fast enough to keep up with what their citizens are demanding.
Even Class One Railroads are participating. The Dakota, Minnesota, and Eastern is looking at SAFETEA LU Funding to kick-start their attempt to get into the fun of the Powder River Coal Basin in Wyoming. After the derailment problems of the past months on the BNSF, it should be hard for the Feds to deny one more railroad into the area. There is plenty of coal to haul away, and a reliable carrier will do well.
There is not one of these projects that remotely resembles the famous "Bridge to Nowhere" in Alaska. These projects are worthy. SAFETEA LU is working, and forward looking Agencies and Railroads are getting busy!