There’s a flurry of activity regarding plans to expand Charlotte’s transit system, bikeways and pedestrian trails via a Transformational Mobility Network (TMN) funded through a proposed one-cent sales tax across Mecklenburg County.
Local officials have hoped to include a referendum on that tax on the November 2021 ballot during municipal elections in Charlotte and the county’s towns. However, elections might be delayed until 2022 due to late-arriving U.S. census data used to map districts for all levels of representation. Stay tuned for news about when the elections—and that referendum—will actually take place.
Another complication for the TMN involves the Red Line, a proposed commuter rail link between Uptown and northern Mecklenburg County. Proposed in the 1990s, it remains unbuilt largely because Norfolk Southern Railway will not share its right of way with the Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS). Without assurance of the Red Line’s expedited completion, some North Mecklenburg officials refuse to support the tax referendum.
An on-line petition drafted by Sustain Charlotte, and supported by MoRA, calls on officials of Norfolk Southern and the North Carolina Railroad to work with CATS to resolve the problem and clear the way for broad public support of the TMN. We urge you to sign the petition (see link below). Our region’s rapid population growth demands sustainable transportation choices to maintain a healthy environment and robust economy, and the lack of fast, affordable transportation choices is hurting our residents, particularly those facing other obstacles to upward economic mobility.
Sign the Red Line Petition
Meanwhile, CATS recently held another round of on-line community meetings about its latest plans for the Silver Line, a light rail line from Gaston County through Uptown and out to Union County as part of the TMN. The Silver Line’s eastern leg will run near or along Monroe Road most of the way to Matthews; the latest plans reflect significant input from MoRA and various communities along the Monroe Road corridor.
~ Brent Gilroy