• Research Report

    Review of the Wake County Transit Plan

    posted January 30, 2012 by Thomas A. Rubin, Dr. David Hartgen
    The draft Wake County Transit Plan, released in November 2011, proposes a doubling of bus service, new commuter rail service between East Garner and Durham, and light rail service between Cary and northeast Raleigh. The expanded service is proposed to be funded by a 1⁄2-cent sales tax, a $10 increase in vehicle registration fees, increased vehicle rental fees, transit bonds, state and federal funds, and rider fares. The estimated cost of the expanded bus and commuter rail plan is $2.8 B, and the full plan (including light rail) $4.6 billion through 2040.
  • Research Report

    Durham’s Tale of Two Tax Increases: County seeks $26.5 million’s worth of sales-tax hikes for schools and transit

    posted October 18, 2011 by Fergus Hodgson, Dr. Terry Stoops, Dr. Michael Sanera, Daren Bakst
    Durham County commissioners are asking voters to approve two sales-tax increases on November 8. The requested increases would amount to $26.5 million per year in new tax revenues. This request comes amid news that state unemployment has been above 9 percent since January 2009 and is currently 10.4 percent.
  • Press Release

    N.C. public transit much more costly than driving

    posted September 15, 2010
    RALEIGH — Public transit costs much more money than driving, and North Carolina transit systems require huge subsidies to attract any riders at all. A leading national transportation expert reaches…
  • Research Report

    Public Transit in North Carolina

    posted September 15, 2010 by Randal O’Toole
    North Carolina highway users are subsidizing other programs at the rate of slightly more than a penny per passenger mile. The total cost of driving in North Carolina is no more than 22 cents per passenger mile. By comparison, the state average cost of public transit is $1.15 per passenger mile, nearly $1 of which is subsidized by non-transit users. Driving is more energy efficient and produces less carbon emissions than almost any transit system in North Carolina.
  • Press Release

    High-speed rail would waste taxpayers’ money

    posted June 24, 2009
    RALEIGH — North Carolina would waste taxpayers’ money if it signs on to federal plans for high-speed rail service. That’s the conclusion of a new John Locke Foundation Policy…
  • Research Report

    Why North Carolina Should Not Build High-Speed Rail

    posted June 24, 2009 by Randal O’Toole
    Because of their high costs, tiny benefits, and interference with property rights, North Carolina should not attempt to provide high-speed rail service. Instead, it should use its share of the $8 billion stimulus funds solely for incremental upgrades, such as safer grade crossings and signaling systems, that do not obligate state taxpayers to pay future operations and maintenance costs.
  • Research Report

    Charlotte’s LYNX Line: A Preliminary Assessment

    posted October 5, 2008 by Dr. David Hartgen
    Dr. David Hartgen analyzes the Charlotte LYNX Line, finding, among other things, that final LYNX construction costs are about $521.9 million, about 130 percent above the initial estimate ($227 million), operating costs are about $9.22 million/year, and revenues are averaging about 31 percent of operating costs.

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