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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Nashville is under pressure to invest in mass transit and solve the growing traffic crisis for people who live in Middle Tennessee. But the big question is how to pay for it.
News 2 hosted a town hall meeting Thursday evening to talk about light rail and a transportation plan that could cost $6 Billion dollars.
The Nashville 2017: Planes, Trains, and Automobiles special was a live event from Tennessee State University, focusing on the region’s historic growth and the problems that come with it.
News 2 anchor Bob Mueller was joined by Nashville Vice Mayor David Briley, Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, Dean of TSU’s College of Engineering, and State Senator Bill Ketron of Murfreesboro.
Vice Mayor Briley said, “There’s going to have to be some significant local investment and it’s up to the mayor to sell it.”
Sen. Ketron believes there should be significant private sector investment. “Government cannot continue to pay 100%,” said Ketron. “If we ask voters for 100% of the cost it’s dead.”
According to Dr. Hargrove, there are a number of funding options under discussion, including property, sales and gas taxes. He said, “The question is what are people willing to pay for.”
Watch the full town hall meeting above, in four parts, for insight on the challenges ahead.