LETTER: The choice to be made -- buses or pretty platform buses (bus-rapid transit)
The Washington County Commissioners and Woodbury City Council, along with Oakdale City Council, are hoping you don't notice the difference between millions spent on fancy bus platforms vs. need for more buses.
I am an express bus rider, I know the difference.
Yes, sometimes us express bus riders wish we had early afternoon buses to get home, but we do not dream of them being on pretty platforms like the bus-rapid transit (BRT) would bring. We do not need platform buses set up on all kinds of routes that cannot be changed if the routes are not working.
What Woodbury and Oakdale could do, right now, is add some buses during the day on any of the routes they have.
Another option, Sun Ray Shopping Center along McKnight Road, has a bus hub with several bus routes. Bus routes 70 and 350, from Sun Ray, come very close to Woodbury and could be expanded. They come down Century Avenue and McKnight Road all the way to Lower Afton Road, they could easily turn onto Lower Afton and come up Valley Creek Road or turn towards Lower Afton and the Highway 61 park and ride.
Want more parking space? Build a ramp at Lower Afton and the Highway 61 park and ride.
I think you can see there are many options to connect to the eastern suburbs and downtown St Paul. We do not need to spend the money they are requesting to spend on BRT, nor do we need to have fancy platforms built for millions of dollars.
If you live in Washington County or Oakdale, contact your commissioners and city council, tell them no to bus-rapid transit. Demand they review the routes available at this time, and expand on them.