The People (562 of 'em) Have Spoken

Here are some highlights of the AIM market study, conducted by NuStats International for Capital Metro, among a sample of 562 Austinites, during May:

• Seventy-three percent of the respondents think Austin is a "much better" or "somewhat better" place to live than other U.S. cities. Only 5% thought Austin was "somewhat worse" or "much worse."

• Seven out of 10 respondents say traffic congestion is the worst problem caused by Austin's rapid growth. How to solve it? Respondents were asked to rank each of three options -- "building more roads," "building transit infrastructure," and "changing people's behavior" -- as either a "good," "fair," or "dumb" solution, and the survey pool pretty much split into thirds. The only exception was for behavior change, which fewer people think is a dumb idea.

• Sixty-eight percent of respondents said they'd be "very likely" or "somewhat likely" to support a light-rail initiative, but 54% predicted light rail would fail at the ballot box.

• Of the people who currently ride Capital Metro, more than half are under 34 years old, 45% claim incomes greater than $20,000 (20% claim incomes over $50,000), and 48% are Anglo. These folks identified more frequent service on current routes as their most-desired service improvement.

• Nearly 20% of respondents feel that improving public transit is the top priority facing our city, and nearly 60% more placed it among their top three. -- M.C.M

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