There is no question we need a regional transportation system is Southeast Michigan. It will create jobs. It will help keep and attract talent. It will give us the same competitive advantage enjoyed by other major cities and regions that see more economic development because they have a strong transportation system.
To drive those points home, the Detroit Regional Chamber just debuted two new TV spots starring Lizabeth “Beth” Ardisana, ASG Renaissance co-founder and CEO, and Dennis Archer, Jr., CEO of Ignition Media Group and president of Archer Corporate Services.
“Within the last year, I’ve hired 1,000 people and I could hire another 500 today,” Ardisana said. “Every application we have has a box that says ‘Do I have reliable transportation?’ If you can’t say that, we can’t hire you … I think the most important thing we have to recognize about regional transportation is that it’s critical to the success of everybody.”
According to the Brookings Institution, 78 percent of jobs in Southeast Michigan cannot be reached within 90 minutes via regional public transit.
“It’s imperative that we change the fact that we’re one of the largest regions in the country that doesn’t have a reliable, connected regional transportation network,” Archer said. “It has a huge effect on the ability of people to look for and get jobs. A solid regional solution that connects cities and suburbs and allows people to get to where the jobs and business opportunities are would make a world of difference.”
Not only will a regional transportation system help connect employers and job seekers, it is also a good investment. The American Public Transportation Association found for every $1 invested in regional public transit, the region can expect $4 in economic returns.
Oh, and one more thing. It will ease our commute. If you’ve had your commute doubled this spring or just ended up patiently (or not so patiently) sitting in traffic because of the road work, regional transportation might just be for you. (We doubt if the road work is going away any time soon.)
The new ads are part of an ongoing series highlighting the critical need for reliable regional public transit to connect Southeast Michigan’s four counties. They are funded by the Detroit Regional Chamber Foundation with support from The Kresge Foundation.
To learn more and add your voice to the call for reliable, frequent and connected regional transit in Southeast Michigan, visit acoalitionfortransit.com.