Mbta fare hike could make traffic worse, transportation advocate says gas in back relief


The MBTA has approved a nearly 6 percent fare hike. The increase will effect subway and commuter rail trains starting July 1. State transportation officials electricity song say it’s the cost of doing business, but even some MBTA board members say it’s time for lawmakers to get involved and raise new revenue to fund public transportation in Massachusetts. Morning Edition host Joe Mathieu spoke with public transportation advocate and director of the group Transportation for Massachusetts, Chris Dempsey. The transcript below has been edited for clarity.

Chris Dempsey gasbuddy login: I think there are two sides to this story. On the one hand, people are comfortable with a reasonable and modest increase. It’s been a few years since fares have gone up and j gastroenterol hepatol it’s a 6 percent increase, which is a big one, but not enormous compared to ones we’ve had in the past. On the other hand, this is an example that we are not treating our transportation system as a system. We’re looking at it as individual units. And I think some of the biggest losers in this conversation are origin electricity login actually drivers — people who are on the road every day and are now going to deal with more congestion on those streets.

Dempsey: Absolutely, and consumers and commuters are making these types of choices every single day. So I would ask the folks that are listening this morning who are just starting their day, maybe gas in dogs symptoms they are driving: Do they want some of those 10,000 cars on the road that they’re driving? Can their road take any more of that traffic? Because my guess is people are going to say no. We’re already the most traffic congested region in the entire country. We beat Los Angeles in that category for the first time us electricity hertz ever. And we do not have the right perspective about treating transportation as a system where people are making those choices between taking the T, driving and other modes.

Dempsey: Absolutely right. The average driver in Greater Boston wastes more than $2,000 every year sitting in traffic. That’s mostly lost electricity research centre wages, but also increased fuel costs and the higher cost of goods throughout society. This MBTA fare increase could have been avoided with a 1-cent increase in the gas tax. That is hardly going to break the back of any drivers, but now those drivers are getting more congested and more traffic on the roads.

Dempsey: I think that’s a tool in the toolbox. We’re not u gas cedar hill mo saying that’s exactly the right answer. What we are saying is, Let’s treat transportation as a system. I think Gov. Charlie Baker actually thinks a lot about systems. He thinks a lot about how government needs to balance areas r gas constant in the right way. And this is an example where we think we need to be saying people are making that choice between driving and between taking the T. We want a system that is more efficient, that is more electricity 1 unit how many watts cost effective, but also one that is responsible in terms of economic development, supporting our economy and not holding it back as today’s congestion is, and then let’s talk about the environment. Transportation is by far the largest source of air pollution in Massachusetts. Because of that, we have one in 10 people in the state that have asthma. One in six children in Greater Boston has asthma. Again, transportation is the largest contributor to that. And what we’re saying with a fare increase, without commensurate increases in the cost of driving, is that we want more gas 87 89 93 people to drive, not fewer.