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New analysis shows the impact of transit service cuts—and it’s devastating

5 Oct 2020 | Posted by | 1 Comment | ,

With efforts to pass federal emergency relief stalling, transit agencies across the country are warning of drastic cuts to service.TransitCenter and the Center for Neighborhood Technology teamed up to analyze the devastating impact of these cuts, reaffirming the need for Congress to pass at least $32 billion in emergency relief for transit immediately. 

Public transportation is an absolutely critical part of millions of Americans’ lives, providing needed connections to jobs, schools, grocery stores, healthcare facilities and more. And without at least $32 billion in emergency funding for public transportation to survive the COVID-19 crisis, this vital link will crumble, leaving millions stranded. 

That’s what TransitCenter and the Center for Neighborhood Technology found in their new joint report, Stranded by Service Cuts. The researchers honed in on 10 regions across the country and modeled the human impact of 50 percent cuts to peak transit service and 30 percent cuts to off-peak service. The result is a disheartening preview of the pain facing millions of Americans and the national economy.

Across the 10 regions, “more than 3 million households and 1.4 million jobs would lose access to frequent transit,” according to the report. “Second- and third-shift workers would lose an affordable way to commute, and households without vehicles would have an even harder time meeting everyday needs.” 

The burden of these transit cuts would fall overwhelmingly on people of color. In Atlanta, this is especially pronounced: “More than half of people losing access to frequent full-day transit would be Black residents, and more than two-thirds of those losing access would be non-white or Hispanic,” according to the report. 

It doesn’t have to be this way. Congress could do its job and save public transportation—a public good that so many Americans count on. Send a message to your member of Congress today, urging them to fight for at least $32 billion in emergency relief for transit in the next COVID-19 relief package.

1 Comment

  1. GBL

    2 months ago

    Transit is essential for access to work locations, medical appointments, and recreational activities. Of course those without cars regard public transportation as essential. Even those who have a car rely on transit to avoid traffic congestion and high parking fees. I purposely chose to reside in an area where I am close to Metro and MARC, and can rely on Ride On buses to transport me there with no need to drive. Considering that cars and trucks are the major source of air and climate pollution, we need transit which moves large numbers of people at affordable rates with much less negative impacts on the environment.