Sacramento officials are back-slapping themselves for opening a light rail line between downtown Sacramento and the nearby town of Folsom. More particularly, old town Folsom, home of numerous antique shops. They proudly proclaim that the light rail system will offer a communting alternative to Highway 50.
Rich Lorenz, Folsom’s pubic works director, says “Highway 50 is not going to meet the long-term needs of this end of the county.”
Then we are in for a lot of gridlock.
What these giddy public officials are blind to is the fact that the massive population increases in the county, which are driving (pardon the pun) increased congestion on Highway 50, are not occurring near the light rail stops in Folsom. Instead, they are occurring in more rural and extended areas, such as El Dorado Hills and the immense developments occurring south of Folsom such as in Rancho Cordova.
These new residents are straining roads that lead to Highway 50. They do not live anywhere near the light rail stops.
Do these officials really expect people to drive to a light rail stop – where there is limited parking – pay $4.50 for a ticket, and then put up with a 50-minute light rail trip to downtown Sacramento? That will not happen.
The congestion problem on Highway 50 could be solved if the officials would stop allowing new housing developments in areas where the infrastructure cannot support them. Light rail is not the answer, and has not been the answer anywhere in the Sacramento region.