I couldn't imagine being the Secretary who presides over the permanent decline of the MBTA. The T is not just an iconic part of the region, but it helps address climate change and traffic, connects people to jobs and opportunity, and is one of the few egalitarian spaces left!
To go from an advocate who fought for better transit to carrying water for fare hikes, service cuts, and arguing for hoarding federal funds.
To be clear these permanent cuts are not fiscally responsible... They will devastate future ridership and housing production as well as accelerate and climate change.
The Report on the Future of Transportation might as well be toilet paper. How do "we move more people and fewer cars" by cutting back service? How do we address climate change by forcing more drivers onto the road? Did we not build in uncertainty.
Because of the failure of our politicians and MassDOT in the past, we're likely to have severe climate events that derail ridership. We can't control pandemics, and we're likely to see more of them because of climate change. Are abandoning the hard work of this team?
Are we abandoning the goal of building a more equitable sustainable future? These permanent cuts are predicated on the idea that the T doesn't know when riders will come back or even if they will. That's complete BS.
Are we to believe the most popular gov in the country, & a "progressive legislature" in wealthy states is powerless to shape the future? Are there no interventions like more TOD, a means-tested fare, more bus lanes, a cheaper, faster commuter rail that get folks back on the T?
That's to say nothing of what we need to do on the "stick" side of things. Equitable tolls (Why do 111 riders pay more to cross the Tobin than drivers?) & gas tax (14% hike over the last 30 years, while CR fares have risen 246%) are needed!
We can't make this Governor "get transit" or even care about it, but we can point out the cognitive dissonance of touting #HousingChoice and proposing permanent cuts to Commuter Rail service. What signal does this send to cities and towns? to developers?
How can this administration thank essential workers and then cut evening bus and subway service? Cut ferry service for workers on the South Shore?
We can do better. I wouldn't want my legacy as a Gov, legislature, or Secretary to be watching the permanent decline of the MBTA by failing to fund the T and take advantage of federal funding, or by setting us back on climate change by half a decade or more. #TransitIsEssentialMA

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More from @jarjoh

24 Jul
I mean @BostonGlobe & @binajv , John Lewis isn't even buried yet. Publishing cutesy vauge opeds in support of racial justice don't mean anything if you don't challenge the status quo or re-examine your biases. Black people are disproportionately jailed for crimes white people
get probation and a slap on the wrist for. We know that black and brown people make up an oversized percentage of the prison population. (@PrisonPolicy).
And despite the Commonwealth's liberal reputation (which should have been obliterated by the shambolic police reform debate in the House anyway), Mass locks up too many people.
Read 7 tweets
20 Jun
As folks learn about #BlackWallStreet, they should also learn that the final nail in the coffin was a far more banal form of racism and white supremacy... The highway.
After rebounding from such a racist massacre, the district would be cut in half by a noisy, polluting highway. Thousands of white commuters have benefitted from the pain this neighborhood suffered. In addition to reparations paid to descendants, OK should remove or deck the road.
As others, pointed out, it wasn't just the highway, "Urban Renewal" is to blame too. @cityoftulsagov leveled buildings for a new school. You can see just how densely settled the area was. @osutulsa sits where Booker T Washington was. #BlackWallStreet
Read 10 tweets
9 May
We have to start thinking about land use and density post-COVID. And no, I don’t mean getting less dense. The Iowa versus So. Korea numbers answers that. No, I mean 15-20 min neighborshoods. This means people don’t have to try or even use transit for their daily needs.
That can be a little scary for those of us who want to see transit ridership rebound. But we have to rethink what makes transit successful. We have to center equity, livability, and sustainability. This means reviving main streets in EJ communities to have healthy food options.
Also, I meant “drive” not try earlier. But it also means you need to turn over more street space to pedestrians, cyclists, & micro-mobility users. We have to reallocate public curb space from storing private vehicles to accommodate the long term shift to deliveries.
Read 11 tweets
28 Feb
We're really excited about #RegionalRail Phase 1 being included in this bond bill. This is a transformative project that reimagines what our Commuter Rail network can do for commuters, students, and residents across the region! 👩🏾‍💼🧕🏻👨🏻‍🦼👴🏿👨‍💻
#RegionalRail is about more capacity and more service, it's about #equity, and it's about economic development and more. Thanks to #mapoli for listening. With a few more amendments we can make this a reality.
#RegionalRail Phase 1 is about more trains during peak to relieve congestion 😟on the 🚞 rails and the 🚙🚗 road. In some cases the number of train during the peak (6:30-9:30 or 4-8) will increase by 50%!!! That's thousands of seats on nearly every corridor in and out of Boston!
Read 19 tweets
30 Dec 19
1/ So I've been reading a fantastic book lately. It has me reflecting on the differences in why transit works so well in London as compared to Boston...
2/ A great deal comes down to the fact that London's civic community largely buys into the Gustavo Petro ethos, (I'm paraphrasing here) "a developed [city] is not a place where the poor have cars. It's where the rich take public transit"
3/ This isn't to say London is perfect... They flirted with massive highway projects that bulldozed neighborhoods, like the Westway. Not quite the charming, quaint high streets we come to expect from the Brits.
Read 27 tweets

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