In August, New York State committed to forming a transit task force in order to get essential local support for the Tappan Zee Bridge replacement project, which dropped its transit focus when the project was fast tracked last October. Over two months later, traffic-weary Lower Hudson Valley residents have seen no movement from the state in launching the task force. As a result, Tri-State has decided to start keeping track of how long it’s been since it was announced—check out our live count-up clock on tstc.org to watch the time fly by.
Far from being a token committee, the task force was key in securing support from local leaders that demanded a smarter transportation solution for the Lower Hudson Valley. After years of community discussions, the region reached a consensus that transit should be part of any plans to replace the Tappan Zee Bridge, and the task force must begin its work to realize that community objective. What Tri-State said upon the announcement of the task force is as true today as it was two months ago:
The deciding factor will be whether this Regional Transit Task Force brings transit further into reality in the new bridge project than the last regional task force. Financial support, diverse engagement, and urgency in the planning process are the absolute minimum criteria to make this happen.
To date, the transit task force has not convened, nor have its members been announced. Financial support for transit studies has not been publicly identified. The clock is ticking.