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Mid-Tenn. transportation advocates search for a transit plan voters will approve

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  -- Mid-state transportation advocates are back at the drawing boards one year after Metro voters derailed a $5.4 billion plan to relieve congestion on Music City highways.

Nashville Business Journal reporter Meg Garner says authorities in Davidson, Williamson and Maury counties are now working on a new plan to relieve congestion along the region’s southern traffic corridor. She says the multi-county effort acknowledges what voters thought was missing from the previous plan.

“To really get that effective solution quickly, there is going to have to be that regional collaboration. You can see these advocacy groups...they recognise that. They’re really trying, I think, to strive to do that on the front end.”

Garner says advocates see two big challenges facing an area-wide transit plan. The first is that each county would have to hold its own referenda asking voters for funding. The second problem is that taxpayers appear to be looking for immediate solutions for transit problems it may takes years or even decades to solve.

“They look for silver bullets and they look for quick fixes, but there’s not really a quick fix to it. Congestion isn’t going to go away. Even if we get transit our congestion isn't going to get better than it is today.”

The southern corridor transit plan should be completed by October. Garner says, to date, she’s seen no effort to develop a similar plan for the badly congested  I-24 corridor into Rutherford and Coffee counties.

For more in-depty reporting on the regional transit issue, check out Meg Garner's complete story in the Nashville Business Journal.