Transportation equity is about creating multimodal transportation systems that enhance the social and economic environments within communities, specifically those who have been disinvested in historically. Communities of color and low-wealth communities often lack meaningful access to transportation.
Investing in a comprehensive transportation system, including public transit, roads and bridges, and bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure, will create greater access to jobs, mobility, and opportunities for all Minnesotans.
Transportation investments make our state more economically competitive and position Minnesota to thrive in an increasingly global economy. In order to maintain our competitive advantage, build up our under-utilized local assets, and generate entrepreneurial activity, Minnesota needs to step up and make the kind of game changing investments that will lead to long-term, shared prosperity. These investments can and should positively impact the people who have struggled the most during the recent Great Recession—communities of color, the elderly, low-income families, and people with disabilities.
TRANSIT INVESTMENTS LEAD TO JOB GROWTH FOR PEOPLE OF COLOR
- Building out the Twin Cities metro area’s regional transit system would create more than 30,000 new construction jobs and lead to an additional expansion of the regional economy by up to $1.4 billion.
- For residents living in the poorest 20% of neighborhoods in the region, building out the plan for light rail and bus rapid transit lines would make an additional 45,000 to 55,000 jobs accessible within a 30-minute transit trip.
TRANSPORTATION CHOICES FOR THOSE UNABLE TO DRIVE
Improving and expanding our network of connectivity will improve people’s lives and economic prospects. Regular route bus lines, rail, and bus rapid transit corridors and proposed streetcar networks will directly connect people and workers to critical destinations such as hospitals, employment centers, natural areas and parks, major retail sites, and educational facilities.
- Only 15% of jobs and 25% of households in the metro are conveniently served by transit.
- Currently, 7% of the region’s households do not own a vehicle, but that percentage is higher in some places, such as the proposed Bottineau LRT Corridor, where the figure is 14%.
RACIAL DISPARITIES AND INCOME INEQUALITY IN MINNESOTA
People of color make up the fastest growing segment of our population, and our economy increasingly depends on these communities having access to transportation and equitable opportunities to build wealth.
INCREASING INCOME AND BUILDING WEALTH
A comprehensive transportation system that serves Minnesotans statewide can be an essential tool in lessening Minnesota’s racial inequities and income disparities. Through funding such a system, Minnesota will make an important investment in our present and future economies, supporting communities where everyone has equal access to opportunity.