Austin transit agency thinks big with $9.6 billion proposal
Austin’s Capital Metro Transit Authority is rolling out a proposed $9.6 billion subway and light rail system after previous efforts failed at the polls.
The new system would require a 21% increase in the property tax rate that would aveage out to about $300 per year for the average homeowner, according to preliminary figures.
Details of the plan were discussed in a joint meeting of the Cap Metro board and Austin City Council on Monday with a view toward a November election.
State Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, former mayor and a longtime proponent of mass transit in the congested city, urged planners and citizens to “think big.”
“The age of the Band-Aid approach to transportation has to be long gone,” he told a rally at City Hall.
The November ballot issue could be a bond proposal with a tax hike included, but details remain to be worked out.
The financial scenario envisions $3.8 billion from the federal government, which would require a dedicated local funding source.
A proposed $600 million light rail line proposal was narrowly defeated in 2014.