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What's next for rapid transit in Indianapolis?

Posted at 10:29 PM, Nov 10, 2016

INDIANAPOLIS -- Voters have given the green light for a tax increase for expanded rapid transit – but the big questions on everyone’s mind are how much will it cost and will it happen?

The wheels are turning for expanded service on current bus routes. More frequent times, later hours, seven days a week – rapid transit lines could become a reality after voters approved the Red Line tax increase November 8.

Voters have agreed to pay more in income tax to help fund mass transit. You’ll pay a quarter more for every $100 of income, for the average person with an income of $40,000 per year that’s about $100 in taxes per year.

The City-County Council still has to approve the income tax increase, but it would generate an estimated $56 million per year for expanded service and lay the initial groundwork for the Blue and Purple rapid transit lines if approved.

The first rapid transit line – The Red Line – is already in the works.

Construction is expected to start sometime in 2017. But that’s contingent on federal appropriation.

"There are areas where mass transit is never going to be the right solution- suburban areas where it's been designed around the car and designed for driving,” said IndyGo Spokesperson Bryan Luellen. “Those are areas that are hard to serve with transit, and they're really expensive to serve with transit. Where the rapid lines are planned, they're going to operate in really walkable areas where the density is higher."