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Created By: Tom Tarrant - Westport
Created On: April 10,2014 at 2:09:57 PM
I am submitting the following comments per directions at the end of the WestportNow article I read today about last night's meeting at Westport Town Hall related to the recent transit study... While I was unable to join the April 9 meeting in person, it sounds like there was much good discussion about this very important topic. I agree with the consensus opinion that expanding commuter service to our train stations is the top priority, as this, along with continuing to increase the price of a train parking pass, will provide the best incentives, both logistical and financial, to increase bus ridership and help to maintain a sustainable transit system for generations to come. That being said, I also believe a strong second priority needs to be the consideration of, and planning for, a Saugatuck-to-Downtown bus route. Our town has identified these two districts as key areas for Westport going forward. As acritical infrastructure component, such a new bus line would play an instrumental role in supporting the success of current and future town projects, including the redevelopment of such long-standing institutions as the Westport Library, the Westport Arts Center, the Levitt Pavilion (remodel in-progress), as well as the planned expansion of facilities for seniors, further development of the West Bank and the ongoing downtown theater initiative, among others. The Town of Westport and many local businesses have made substantial investments in both the Saugatuck and Downtown areas. A viable and reliable public transit option would not only enable Westporters to enjoy all that our great town has to offer, but it would also help to sustain the local businesses that employ many workers who will rely on public transportation to get to and from their jobs. I encourage those town committees involved in planning for both the transportation system and downtown development, as well as the Board of Finance, to consider these key components to the future success of Westport's Downtown district, in particular. A bus that connects downtown with Saugatuck and the train would provide the infrastructure necessary to help ensure the success of the major investments already made and planned for the near future. With gratitude to those involved in planning for Westport's future, Tom Tarrant A 17-year Westport Commuter Bus rider
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