For businesses, institutions, and contact centers looking for truly greener fields to cut down on their environmental footprints there will be several new opportunities to do just that, by locating their offices near the stations of new rapid transit lines scheduled to open in 2009.
--Arriving first is the Phoenix metro area's Valley Metro light rail line. It will begin regular service on a 20 mile line route connecting Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa on Jan.1; it had pre-opened to crush crowds last weekend
--Portland, Oregon's Tri-Met will introduce service on WES, a diesel railcar-operated suburb-to-suburb line from Wilsonville to Beaverton, 15 miles, where it will connect with the MAX light rail for downtown Portland, airport, and other communities. WES will open Feb.2 and will run initially in rush hours only
--On March 30, Austin, Texas will see service begin on its first rail line, the Capital MetroRail from the city's downtown to Leander, some 32 miles to the northwest. Like WES it will be operated by diesel railcars in peak periods only
--Later in 2009, the Seattle area will, after 40 some years of political warfare, witness rapid transit trains rolling once again, on a route between SeaTac Airport and the city's downtown in the form of Sound Transit's LINK LRT. Also at about the same time, and to the north, Metro Vancouver, BC's Canada Line from the city center to Richmond and Vancouver International Airport will take its first trains. The Seattle region has commuter rail and short streetcar lines in Seattle and Tacoma. Metro Vancouver also has commuter rail, plus a new demonstrator streetcar, and SkyTrain, a rapid transit system linking downtown Vancouver with Burnaby, Coquitlam, New Westminster, and Surrey
Should your site selection choices include these cities plus many more that have rapid transit make locating by them your New Year's resolution. It will pull more employees, and visitors from their cars, which in turn will reduce traffic, roadspace demand, and limit their nasty environmental consequences. It also promotes healthier living by not only cutting down on emissions but also by walking to and from stations, or using connecting buses which will also require you and others to get there on your own steam...thereby helping to meet other New Year's resolutions