Extensions of the Atlanta Streetcar are among the projects included in MARTA's expansion plans for the city.

Atlanta Beltline supporters: MARTA expansion plan on the wrong track

The MARTA Board of Directors this week will consider a timetable for the agency’s Atlanta expansion, and supporters of the Atlanta Beltline aren’t happy. 

The proposed timeline (here’s a detailed look) would launch two bus rapid transit lines and other bus improvements by 2025. But more expensive light rail projects – including the Beltline – would come later, with some not completed for more than 20 years. 

That prompted the group Beltline Rail Now to decry the proposed timeline in a statement issued over the weekend. The group said it’s “disappointed that MARTA doesn’t plan to build light rail on the full loop until the 2040s.” 

“We had high hopes after MARTA’s board voted to include most of the Beltline on its project list last year, but this plan careens down the wrong track,” the statement said. The group urged the MARTA Board to “take another look at the list and maximize transit that serves more Atlantans by 2030.” 

The timeline passed the MARTA Board’s planning committee two weeks ago. The full board is expected to take up the plan on Thursday.

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About the Author

David Wickert
David Wickert
David Wickert writes about transportation issues for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He previously worked for newspapers in Washington state, Illinois...