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With its new status as an urban area, San Marcos, Martindale and surrounding areas appear likely to move away from the Capital Area Rural Transportation System as its primary provider for public transit. COURTESY PHOTO

SUBMITTED REPORT

The city of San Marcos will hold a Public Transportation Conference at 6 p.m. May 24 at the Activity Center, 501 E. Hopkins, to discuss the creation of an urban transit district in the San Marcos Urbanized Area, which includes the city of Martindale and unincorporated portions of Hays, Caldwell, and Guadalupe Counties.

In March, San Marcos was designated as an “urbanized area” based on the results of the 2010 U.S. Census. That designation affects funding mechanisms for public transit and automatically qualifies San Marcos for federal transit money. However, an urban transit district must be established in order to qualify for state urban transit funds.

“The purpose of this meeting is to provide to representatives of governmental entities within the new San Marcos Urbanized Area with information on creating an urban transit district,” said Laurie Moyer, managing director of transit in San Marcos. “City staff and representatives from the Goodman Corporation, a Texas-based transit consulting firm, will present background information on the 2010 Census and reasons to create the district.”

Representatives from City of San Marcos, Guadalupe County, Hays County, Caldwell County, Martindale, and Texas State University, and stakeholders from the surrounding area will also be invited, including state agencies and regional planning organizations.  This is a public meeting to discuss the creation of a transit district in accordance with Chapter 458, Rural and Urban Transit Districts of the Texas Transportation Code.

“We will provide the options and background on urban transit districts and ask the representatives whether or not it should be created,” Moyer said.

If the elected officials agree that an urban transit district should be created, a date for a pubic hearing will be set to gather public input on the boundaries of the transit district and future service needs.

For information, contact Moyer at 512-393-8407.

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4 thoughts on “San Marcos, counties to discuss formation of transit district

  1. Being the curmudgeon that I am, I tend to be somewhat cynical about programs like this. Several months ago I noticed that all the CART buses are driving all over town mostly empty! I just wonder what the ridership really is and how much it ends up costing the taxpayer per capita to transfer just a few people around town? I’d wager that some sort of taxi voucher system would be much, much cheaper and it would actually benefit our taxi service business here. I’m sure that the coming meeting will show all sorts of graphs and charts showing what a roaring success the program is…but I challenge all of you to actually start taking a peak at these riderless buses burning up fuel at the tax payers expense as they scoot around town.

  2. I’m kind of inclined to agree. It’s been several years since I paid attention, but when I did, it seemed like the complete lack of coordination between CARTS and the university tram was a significant problem. There were always reasons given, but I was never convinced that the cause was anything more than apathy.

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