Lawmakers approved key legislation to order a feasibility study of a monorail public transportation system between Nashville and Murfreesboro.
Senate Bill 2515, which was approved by the Senate Transportation Committee on Wednesday, directs the Tennessee Department of Transportation to conduct the study.
The study would include a look into the costs of construction, operation and financing of the system, which could potentially handle up to 55,000 passengers per day.
“This 32-mile strip of interstate is the most congested corridor in the state,” said State Senator Bill Ketron (R-Murfreesboro).
He continued, “The current population of Rutherford County is about 290,000. By 2025, it is estimated to be at 600,000, and by 2035, it is estimated that there will be another million residents in the greater Middle Tennessee area. This presents a great problem in terms of traffic issues. We have to be forward thinking regarding what we are going to do when we add this many new vehicles to an already congested roadway.”
The bill requires TDOT to report its findings and recommendations to the Senate and House Transportation Committees by February 1, 2015.
The Metro Planning Organization is already conducting a study to address traffic needs to the southeast of Nashville.
There is already a commuter bus system that runs from Nashville to Murfreesboro.
The MTA manages Regional Transportation commuter bus routes to Rutherford County.
The RTA's Relax and Ride route from Nashville to Murfreesboro had 4,538 passengers in February 2014.
- March 12, 2014: Senator proposes bill to study logistics of monorail system