by Jeff Taylor
Look out Matthews residents — Mayor Lee Myers seems to have been hypnotized by Ron Tober’s voodoo magic.
The town is moving to rezone, remake, and basically force transit oriented development on itself. Plus the town may levy a $5 per car tax on vehicles in order to entice CATS to build a mass transit line out to the town.
Recall we’ve noted that CATS seems unlikely to run the Independence corridor line into Matthews without a re-shuffling of the financial and developmental deck. These moves by the town attempt to do just that and are no doubt intended to convince CATS to build three light rail transit stops inside the town. Why, I have no idea.
Unless both Highway 74 and Independence Pointe Parkway are significantly improved as part of the transit line — and there is no money for that — retail in that corridor will flat die and traffic congestion will increase. I guess Matthews wants to kill its tax base and decrease the quality of life for residents. Or maybe once a rail town, always a rail town.
But the town would be much better off with the improvements on the books for 20 years for Hwy 74 and CATS running a big park-and-ride lot at N. Sardis for a bus-rapid transit system into Uptown.
Let’s see if Matthews residents get as upset about a dagger pointed at the heart of their town as they were about a lingerie shop a few doors down from Renfow’s Hardware.