First came ride-sharing from the likes of Uber and Lyft. Then came the red Jump bikes, now ubiquitous on Sacramento streets, followed by Jump scooters. Next up are electric cars and buses from Electrify America (funded by Volkswagen’s $2 billion “Dieselgate” fine). Now Sacramento Regional Transit District is getting into the action, with a plan to revamp its entire bus route network this summer and make it more user-friendly. And don’t forget the Riverfront Streetcar Project, with plans for construction to start this year on an over-the-river crossing connection between Sacramento and West Sacramento.
California’s Capital City is getting attention nationwide for its alt-transportation methods, which focus on smarter, safer and more efficient ways of getting people from A to B, while reducing carbon emissions and traffic congestion in a big way.
But it’s not always a smooth ride. There are multiple complaints about how Jump bikes are blocking sidewalks, and Jump scooters are not that safe for their drivers or the people they run into. There’s talk of the City planning to impose a fee-per-ride ordinance that Jump says is expensive and prohibitive to expanding its services. The streetcar project is in jeopardy, with project bids for construction way higher than expected, and far beyond the project budget. And can SacRT ever get anyone to ride its light rail?
The future of transportation in Sacramento is off to a great start, but how will these bumps in the road affect it? And how will we — as users, taxpayers and voters — affect and be affected by these new getting-around options?
We’ll be talking about it down in the basement at Ruhstaller with the people who are in charge of taking us where we want to go, but differently. Come listen to their plans, ask them questions, and find out the new directions alt-transit is going to take around here. There’s no need to fasten your seat belts, but we’re hoping for a wild ride of a discussion.
* Jennifer Donlon Wyant, active transportation program specialist for the City of Sacramento
* Henry Li, general manager/CEO of Sacramento Regional Transit District
* Jennifer Venema, sustainability manager for the City of Sacramento
Free admission, but seating is limited, so please register in advance on our Eventbrite page so we know how many chairs to put out and reserve for you.