Clean, Affordable Transportation Choices
Rhode Island’s dependence on automobiles is hurting our communities, the environment and our economy. Rhode Islanders want to live full, prosperous lives with a healthy environment and a healthy economy. They are worried about the poor quality of the air as well as the fact that many people have few options when it comes to getting to work or school. Yet, there is little alternative to private cars.
A robust and reliable public transit system gives people a better choice. Better public transportation means fewer cars and trucks on the road, which in turn means cleaner air. Instead of being dependent on automobiles to commute to work, getting stuck in heavy traffic congestion, and polluting the air, Rhode Islanders could invest in improving and expanding the mass transit system. Mass transit is good for jobs, for a thriving economy, and for clean air. We can transform RIPTA into a world-class mass transit system that connects Rhode Islanders with clean, affordable transportation choices.
Right now, Rhode Island Sierra Club is working to get the state of Rhode Island to commit to long-term sustainable and dedicated financing to increase the reliability and frequency of our state's transit system. We are also urging RIPTA to better promote their service by providing better public information like numbered signs at bus stops, schedule booklets, and a functional web site.
In addition to the Chapter's focus on improving public transit, Rhode Island Sierra Club is working to expand transportation choices by promoting "Complete Streets" policy and implementation at the federal, state, and municipal level. Complete streets are roadways that are designed to be as safe and welcoming for pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit riders as they are for cars. When all road users are accommodated safely and comfortably on the road, people are not forced into the polluting and sedentary lifestyle that automobiles demand.
All Rhode Islanders deserve healthy air, natural places to recreate, and better transportation, but the lack of a strong public transit system and the resulting environmental problems disproportionately affect lower-income and minority individuals. We all have a role to play when it comes to protecting our families from the growing asthma epidemic and the looming threat of global warming. Government, business, and commuters can all work towards a solution that will create clean, healthy air quality as well as a healthy economy, with plenty of job opportunities. By investing in our urban areas and providing safe, clean, affordable transportation choices, Rhode Island can still grow and thrive without sacrificing the natural beauty and rural character of our state.
For more information on Transportation Choices:
Visit the National Complete Streets Coalition website.
Download our Transportation Choices fact sheet.
Learn about Transportation Choices 2020, the Rhode Island Chapter's Public Education Campaign
A Fare Choice: How Rhode Island Can Invest in Public Transit and Energy Independence - a Report from Sierra Club Rhode Island Chapter
Getting from Here to There: Transportation Solutions for Rhode Islanders - a Report from Sierra Club Rhode Island Chapter
Growing Smart with Transit: A Report of the Transit 2020 Working Group
Public Transit Solutions for Rhode Island: the platform statement of the New Public Transit Alliance (NuPTA) is a growing coalition of bus riders, businesses, smart growth, labor, health, and environmental groups dedicated to promoting and expanding mass transit in Rhode Island.
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