Residents voice concerns over StarMetro proposals By TaMaryn Waters • DEMOCRAT STAFF WRITER • October 16, 2009It was evident Thursday residents still have concerns about the major changes slated for StarMetro's bus service next year.
AdvertisementNearly 20 people came out to a public forum hosted by the Council On Neighborhood Associations at the Smith-Williams Service Center, 2295 Pasco St. They fired off questions and concerns regarding StarMetro's proposal, dubbed NOVA 2010. Some said the plan is offering a platter of improvements
that appeal to areas with a high volume of employees, particularly in the increasingly growing southeast side of the city, at the expense of people who
depend on the bus for transportation, such as seniors, people with disabilities and low-income residents. "It's sacrificing accessibility for mobility," said John Plescow, 47, who is legally blind. "They are doing the system on the backs of those who don't have
the option for the chance of attracting people who do have an option."NOVA 2010 plan, slated to launch next fall, is intended to reduce the need to transfer at the C.K. Steele Plaze, increase the number of buses coming to
a stop during peak hours and add routes on streets such at Magnolia Drive and Orange Avenue. But the trade off means other routes will be eliminated and some buses will no longer go through neighborhoods. Instead, the buses will meet at the
neighborhood entrance. That means some riders may have to walk up to a half a mile to get to a stop compared to the current quarter-mile distance. CONA President Stephen Hogge, said, "We see this plan as a real issue, because it's going to be controversial." Ron Garrison, director for StarMetro, said "We don't want to do this if it doesn't work for Tallahassee."
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