Thursday, July 03, 2008

farragut needs to pony up

See? Riding the bus is fun!

But that's not what we're here to talk about. KAT (Knoxville Area Transit) is on the ropes. Ironically, as ridership increases, the budget crunch is forcing them to consider scaling back their operations. One popular route, the Farragut Express, may be on the chopping block.

Why? Because it goes out of the city (Knoxville proper) and therefore isn't subsidized by the city government. Let's face it- fares only cover a fraction of the cost of mass transit. The government (meaning our taxes) ponies up the rest. Or at least most governments do. Some just get a free ride. Other long distance express routes are helped by the receiving end. ORNL helps subsidize the Oak Ridge Express. Why can't moneybags Farragut help with their route?

It's bad enough that the whole idea of Farragut is based on an unsustainable suburban model (which will go the way of the dodo in the next few decades, I think) and that they don't offer any mass transit. The bit of transit they do have is the Express. Many Farraguttans are trying to do the right thing and ride the bus to work. Granted, not living in far-flung suburbs would be better, but we'll take what we can get. The Farragut Express is a service for Farragut. Our little rich neighbor to the west should help pay for it.


Amelia said...

I wonder if KAT expanded their routes to other parts of Knox County outside of city limits if it would help their business or hurt it? Let's face it. Most people in Farragut are perfectly fine in their BMWs and Mercedes, but the other parts of Knox County just outside the city limits (such as middle-class Knoxvillians) would probably appreciate the public transportation more and buy out the monthly options. But if Farragut is going to gripe about not having their route anymore, then they should be forking out.

Anonymous said...

How nice to find you, and fellow Knoxvillians, too!

We often forget that our country already has HIGHLY subsidized transportation, but the transport we subsidize is private cars and single-load semi trucks. The tax money we spend subsidizing gas alone could do wonders if applied to all sorts of public transport, including RAILS (much cheaper to build and maintain than roads. And WHY, again, the James White Parkway??!!)

ck said...

welcome, almostgotit!
search in our archives and you'll find plenty of rants about ol' James White. and we strongly believe that 40 could be "smartfixed" by bulldozing it and letting 640 be the new interstate.