TROY (WWJ) – Troy residents for and against a proposed transit center are expected to attend Monday night’s city council meeting as they decide whether to move forward with the $8 million project backed by federal funding.

Supporters argue the project will bring in new businesses and residents and the federal grant money will only go to another city if they refuse it.

Troy Mayor Janice Daniels and several council members have said they don’t want to use federal stimulus money for a project that they believes will be a financial burden on the next generation of taxpayers.

Troy City Council member Doug Tietz is among those planning to vote no.

“Unfortunately there’s no plan or idea how to fund it going forward. It’s essentially like getting a Porsche free at The Price Is Right,” Tietz said.

“Sure, it’s a free Porche, but you have to pay the insurance, taxes, license, parts and repairs going forward,” he said. “And that’s the fundamental problem with the transit center.  It’s nice to have, but we can’t afford it.”

Tietz said service demand doesn’t justify the project.

“Amtrak has been very clear that they won’t increase the number of trains if we build this. And the SMART service has been cut dramatically to the city of Troy,” he said. “So, the argument that this will be a heavily utilized location simply doesn’t hold up.”

Troy resident Bob Johnson said he fears the City will struggle to pay for the transit center’s upkeep and maintenance long after the federal dollars are gone.

“We’re having to cut services now and, no, I don’t want they to spend any more money,” Johnson said. “We take the money, we’ve gotta spend more money in Troy to pay for the thing. I don’t want it.”

“Birmingham bailed out, we should too,” another Troy resident told WWJ’s Ron Dewey.

Monday is the deadline to use the federal funds before they expire. The meeting inside Troy City Hall on Big Beaver is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.

Stay with WWJ and for the latest.

Comments (3)
  1. Silly Mad says:

    Total bummer Troy (and Birmingham). I really thought you’d step up to the future. California (Sacramento), Chicago really have it going on and with the transit comes tourism. I worked in Sacramento for a legislative lobbyist that lobbied for light rail transit on behalf of various DOTs. I’ve always thought that Michigan (Detroit, Lansing, Ann Arbor) should have started to look at light rail transportation between major hubs within the state. TOO MANY TIMES the responses I heard were “Oh no! We’re the motor city capital and that would just put too many people out of work and risk loosing auto sales!” HA! Look were that attitude got ya. Something else beat ya to that and now we have a bunch of auto workers looking for work and people who have forfeited a car in a “two car family” because there’s no income to afford an extra monthly pmt. BUT WAIT! Living in an area like Birmingham with a transportation / hub system, people don’t need 2 cars anyhow. They can also ride it to work and tourists can trip on over to Birmingham and do some shopping. While they’re there, they might drop some big bucks and some of those closed up shops can re-open.

    What say ye?! Why not do your homework and ask Sacramento how they’re doing after 15+ of light rail ? Troy and Birmingham is crazy NOT to build because it is definitely a “Build It and They Will Come” kind of era. Snooze you loose. Sad state of affairs this is.

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