Volume 16, Number 2
To the editor:
Thank you so much to Carol Pelosi, editor of the Wake Forest Gazette, for allowing me the opportunity to submit a letter that explains my decision to not vote for the last Wake Transit Plan agreement.
I agree that we need to do things to reduce the amount of congestion on our roadways in Wake County. I commute to Raleigh at least twice a day so I understand completely. My vote was my voice saying that I don’t feel that Wake Forest got the best end of the deal in the Wake Transit Plan.
To start with, it was interesting that throughout this process our own Wake Forest mayor, who sits on the GoTriangle Board of Directors, never once engaged the Wake Forest Board of Commissioners in a dialogue about what we would like to see as it relates to transit for our community. And not once, that I am aware of, did our mayor seek the input of the citizens during in-person meetings or social media. This is the person that represents our town and our interests.
As it was becoming more and more clear what the plan was going to look like, it became more and more clear that Wake Forest wasn’t getting what it deserved. While communities like Garner and Morrisville get slated for commuter rail, we were to receive expanded bus service. And if our current ridership is any indication of its success, we will essentially see more empty buses traveling on crowded roadways during rush hour. That’s not exactly what Capital Blvd. and 540 needs. It’s amazing that commuter rail wasn’t an option, especially considering CSX owns several miles of railway leading north out of downtown and it’s mainly used in the evening or overnight for freight.
Now, one thing must also be pointed out about this vote. Even if Wake Forest didn’t say yes to this final agreement, it was stated by the mayor that we won’t be involved in the planning or designing of the plan. It doesn’t appear that we were involved in the plan in the first place. It doesn’t meet the desires of our community. Take a look at the Wake Forest Chamber of Commerce’s 2017 Legislative Agenda. Their agenda calls for, “the pursuit of funding related to the activation of a commuter rail system that connects Wake Forest to the rest of the Triangle”.
One last point – my vote mirrors a majority of our citizens who were obviously concerned about the Wake Transit Plan. In fact, although the transit tax was approved by the county overall, it wasn’t approved by Wake Forest voters. We have a plan that appears to not favor the desires of Wake Forest. And that is one of the many reasons I choose to vote no on the Wake Transit Plan agreement. It’s time to “Bring the Future to Wake Forest Today!”