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LETTERS: ARC leaders think of the big picture

As the regional planning agency for metro Atlanta, the Atlanta Regional Commission commends you on your Oct. 3 piece, “Some issues in need of a regional fix.” ARC is tasked to examine the big picture issues that affect us all, from water to transportation to work force development, and then develop plans to ensure our future success on many levels.

As you mentioned, one of the region’s critical issues is a lack of regional transit governance. Like Chicago, metro Atlanta has several transit agencies, including MARTA, GRTA, Gwinnett County Transit and others. In 2008, ARC spearheaded formation of the Transit Planning Board, a group of elected officials and transit executives to work on the big picture for transit planning, coordination and implementation in our region.

From this entity came a visionary, regional plan for future transit expansion and connection called Concept 3. Earlier this year, this group became the Regional Transit Committee, an ARC policy committee with membership from 18 counties, the city of Atlanta, MARTA, GRTA and the state of Georgia. Working with a governor-appointed Transit Governance Study Commission, RTC is moving closer to creating a truly regional governance structure for transit, similar to Chicago’s RTA.

Efforts like this start with leadership and succeed with cooperation and open-mindedness. They also prove that while it’s not always easy to get everyone on the same page, we can be more productive and more effective when we work together for the good of the region.

— Chick Krautler,

Director

Atlanta Regional Commission