CATA’s Plans Continue To Bother Meridian Residents
Multiple reports are out again today about CATA's plan for a Bus Rapid Transit system and the dismay of Meridian Township residents and business owners about those plans. On the surface, reading and watching posts from WILX.com and WLNS.com make one think that it's just the same old, snotty tactics from Meridian folks who seem to want nothing to do with change. (See new Central Fire Station, Whole Foods store, Walmart store, Costco store, Hannah Lofts and Townhomes, etc. etc. etc.)
If you look at the blueprints and plans that CATA has revised to appease Meridian citizens, it's helps to understand their concerns. Take a look at this video simulation that CATA posted on their website. It will make it easier to visualize and conceptualize the blueprints for the plan that you should check out through this link.
I do not agree with Meridian folks who say there is not a need for BRT in Mid-Michigan. From the looks of what I gather, the plan looks like a really sweet deal for congested and pedestrian heavy East Lansing Grand River corridor and the Michigan Avenue corridor though the Eastside, Stadium District, and Downtown. But, as you work further east along an already nightmarish rush hour stretch of Grand River Avenue from around Park Lake Road to Marsh Road, CATA's plan just seems that it will add more congestion, confusion, and travel time than what already exists. Not only are there plans to add medians and traffic signals to allow left turns and U-turns that kind of resemble "Michigan Lefts", the integration of the isolated BRT lanes with normal traffic at the Okemos Road intersection just looks like a trap for an increase in one's insurance rates.
BRT can work and will work with the right plan. But, right now it seems that a drastic, and potentially costly revision is necessary. And, just think, none of it would be necessary had plans gone through for the Van Atta Connector and cross campus freeway in 1961.