Public transit in Marion County and throughout Indiana is under threat! Authored by Sen. Aaron Freeman (R-Indianapolis), SB 52 seeks to prohibit IndyGo from dedicating one or more lanes for the exclusive use of buses as it builds out the Blue Line. There was a similar effort regarding the Red Line a few years ago. That was defeated by a concerted effort of HEC and allies to preserve the best plans for public transportation in Indianapolis. The Blue Line will serve as a rapid transit link between the city and the international airport, and it will also provide a vital connection for citizens to get to work, do business and travel for fun and recreation. In short, transit is essential, and this bill would deny that essential service to residents and visitors.
Despite an amendment to the bill on 1/18 clarifying that there would be an exemption for IndyGo’s Red and Purple Lines, it remains clear that this bill would halt STATEWIDE, for at least one year, all rapid transit planning that would include consideration of dedicated lanes.
Update (as of 2/22):
This week in the the House Roads and Transportation Committee. there was a nearly 3 hour hearing on SB 52, with many of the 60 people who testified in opposition to the bill. It will be heard next Tuesday, 2/27 for amendments and voting.