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San Antonio's transportation future

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Can San Antonio break free from the car and highway centered transportation model? Changing direction on how we get around the city will be expensive, disruptive and at times uncomfortable. Or we could stay in our vehicles and be stuck in worsening traffic.

It can be argued that the majority of San Antonians want walkable, bike-friendly neighborhoods and to reduce the reliance on cars so to promote sustainable growth.

In the 2020 citywide election, 68% of San Antonio voters resoundingly voted "yes" to support VIA's Keep SA Moving Plan. The vote empowered VIA to harness federal funding for the first time in San Antonio's history, enabling the acceleration of planning for two high-capacity transit corridors: the Green Line and the Silver Line.

The city now stands at a fork in the road. It could fully embrace what some call a golden opportunity to integrate land use and mass transit, fostering thriving communities and corridors prioritizing people over cars. Or it could stick with the highway system that demands car ownership and a mass transit system that effectively is the last choice for many to get around the sprawling city.

Which is the way forward for a brighter and more inclusive transportation future for San Antonio?


Javier Paredes is an architect and VIA Transit board member

Joey Pawlik is the executive director of Activate SA which focuses on active transportation advocacy.

Beto Altamirano is the founder of the Better Futures Institute, and an active member in transportation planning/public engagement.

"The Source" is a live call-in program airing Mondays through Thursdays from 12-1 p.m. Leave a message before the program at (210) 615-8982. During the live show, call 833-877-8255 or email thesource@tpr.org.

*This interview was recorded on March 6, 2024.

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David Martin Davies can be reached at dmdavies@tpr.org and on Twitter at @DavidMartinDavi