CAMPO Decision Tree Takes Root
Under No. 2, the specific benefits cited as desirable should bode well for public transit: mobility, economic development/community, environmental and public health, social equity/quality of life. Another 11 criteria address other cost, funding, financing, timeline, legislative/electoral, and cost/benefit issues.
The downside to this new method: The complexity of the evaluation process, and the detailed information it requires, make it nigh to impossible for the city of Austin's streetcar proposal (or the city of Elgin's "Sausage Link") to make it through CAMPO in time for a November referendum. Mayor Will Wynn set that goal last year, but most recently, he's expressed firm commitment to putting the city's urban rail circulator project through a full Investment Decision Tree vetting – however long that takes. The advantage: When voters do see a rail proposal, they'll know the hard details on its precise costs and benefits.
Expressing frustration with the now-evident procedural impossibility of a November election was TWG member and transit advocate Rep. Mike Krusee, R-Round Rock. Referencing current Downtown traffic gridlock, Krusee said, "I think it's a shame, because the crisis is upon us now."