Here’s another race for governor with big implications for transportation policy: In Pennsylvania, businessman Tom Wolf handily beat incumbent Tom Corbett.
Though Pennsylvania made some important progress on transportation issues during Corbett’s tenure, Wolf wants to usher in much more meaningful reforms. In its election round-up, Philly-based This Old City points to a post the governor-elect himself wrote for the blog while he was battling it out in the Democratic primary. In the piece, Wolf lays out a vision for a more multi-modal state:
We need to prioritize investments in local public transportation systems. Many of Pennsylvania’s cities have felt the effects of industrial decline over the last fifty years and, as a result, they have struggled to maintain once vibrant neighborhoods and smaller economic corridors. With declining populations and state funding that favors new development over redevelopment, we have neglected our public transportation systems, which put our major cities, like Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, at an economic disadvantage.
While other states and cities have continued to expand and modernize their transit systems, our transit authorities, like the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority (SEPTA), have struggled to survive. Instead of updating equipment and tackling major improvement projects — like expanding the Broad Street Line to the Navy Yard — SEPTA has had to plan for significant cut-backs in services.