Chattanooga Studies Future Transportation Needs

Reported by: Bill Mitchell

Edited by: Ashley Henderson
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Updated: 2/21 6:47 pm
CHATTANOOGA, TN. (WDEF) -- If you think it's hard to get around Chattanooga during rush hour now---just wait until 2020.

CARTA and the Regional Planning Agency, along with a dozen other entities are trying to head-off gridlock by looking at what's called a Multimodal Transportation Center.

There are more ways to get around the Chattanooga area than personal vehicles.
In the downtown area CARTA runs free electric shuttles.
There's a bicycle-rental program, and taxi's.
But the recently completed 2040 Regional Transportation Study outlines even more options, like trains and intercity buses.
And it wants to bring them into a central hub.

LISA MARAGNANO, EXEC. DIR., CARTA "The goal of the multimodal center would be to have it in a location that would offer people a lot of mobility choices."

The Multimodal Transportation Center is not exactly a new idea.

LISA MARAGNANO "Right now we're a little behind most major cities..if you look at Knoxville." (BUMP) 31:39 "they they just constructed a multi-modal transit center."

Phillip Pugliese, who runs the city's bicycle program is MTCS project coordinator.

PHILLIP PUGLIESE, COORDINATOR, MTCS PROGRAM "We also want to make it ..for people to make that connection between walking, parking their vehicle, using a bike, taking a taxi ..whatever they may choose to use."

The agencies are taking the massive project one step at a time.
One of the biggest obstacles is funding.

LISA MARAGNANO "That's the other caviate, as to how we're going to fund it. Probably a combination of federal, state,local..hopefully some private partnerships we have with the study."

PHILLIP PUGLIESE "As funding becomes available, as target locations and feasibility get done, we'd like to have something sooner better than later."

Where will the center be?
Committee members say that decision will be made as the plan develops.

That transportation center, when its completed, will serve as a central hub for all of the cities and counties in the tri-state region.

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