Tuesday, May 14, 2019 | 2 a.m.
I have a few thoughts in response to the April 30 gust column “The people wanted light rail, but the leaders voted for a bus,” in which the author advocated for light rail rather than bus transit along Maryland Parkway.
• Light rail is more durable than any bus might be. This translates to increased safety for users of the transit system.
• Since light rail is separated from automobile traffic, it would be safer, even for motorists. Just Google “safety light rail vs. automobiles” for plentiful statistics. While you’re online, check out ‘RTC Southern Nevada’ and look under Maryland Parkway 109 to see the artists’ side-by-side renderings of what Maryland Parkway would look like using light rail versus what it would look like if we continued with transit by bus instead.
• As an avid cyclist, I would prefer light rail partly because the bicycle lane is separated from automobile traffic by the barrier of the light rail. Self-driving cars are programmed to steer slightly to the right, endangering cyclists. Light rail, on the other hand, travels in its own track, thus relatively protecting vulnerable road users. Granted, there are instances of bicyclists being hit by light rail, but these are mostly preventable.
• Light rail could be a boon and complement the Regional Transportation Commission’s bike share and strategically placed bicycle racks. The potential bicycle accommodations on light rail would be much safer and more secure than racks on buses.