By Joe Klein
I love my bike, and my Go-To Card. My bike has helped me stay healthy, save money, learn my way around the Twin Cities, and experience the Minnesota outdoors in all four seasons (yes, even winter.) To me, having good bike trails and transit options is so much better than spending hours sitting in traffic and spending so much money on gas. I am fortunate not having to get in a car to travel everywhere. But most of us don’t have good options to get where we need to go.
I use the bus and train regularly to go to school, commute to work, explore different neighborhoods, and make quick runs to the grocery store. My Metro Transit Go-To Card lets me ride the bus or light rail whenever I need to, without a second thought. I don’t own a car, and as long as I stay here in St. Paul, I don’t think I’ll ever need one.
I love living in an active, walkable city, and it’s helped me live a high-quality, healthy life. That’s why a strong transportation system is important to me. So I invite you to join the “Roll With Us” Transit Challenge. During the week of March 1-7, dozens of state legislators will take public transportation to work, to day care, to the store and other everyday tasks to witness the realities of today’s transit system. You can “roll with us” too! Share your experiences on social media with the hastag #HowWeRollMN
What: “Roll With Us” Transit Challenge, March 1 – 7, 2015
Minnesota legislators have been challenged to ride transit, just as many of their constituents do. As the legislature considers transportation funding proposals this session, advocates are urging representatives and senators to “ride a mile in our shoes.”
Why: “The goal of this week is to highlight the need for better transit by using it for all of our daily living needs. Although this week cannot replicate someone’s actual experience, we hope that we can at least open a window into the critical situation faced by Minnesota’s transit riders,” said Senator Scott Dibble, Chair of Senate Transportation and Public Safety Committee.
Who: The bipartisan roster of legislators signed on includes (note: legislators continue to sign on, so this list is not complete):
Senator Scott Dibble (61, Minneapolis)
Senator Eric Pratt (55, Prior Lake)
Senator David Senjem (25, Rochester)
Senator Patricia Torres Ray (63, Minneapolis)
Representative Mike Freiberg (45B, Golden Valley)
Representative Sandra Masin (51A, Eagan)
Representative Rena Moran (65A, St. Paul)
Representative JoAnn Ward (53A, Woodbury)
Representative Laurie Halverson (51B, Eagan)
Representative Connie Bernardy (41A, Fridley)
Representative Erik Simonson (7B, Duluth)
Representative Jennifer Schultz (7A, Duluth)
Representative Mike Sundin (11A, Esko)
Representative Alice Hausman (66A, St. Paul)
Representative Frank Hornstein (61A, Minneapolis)
Lieutenant Governor Tina Smith
Metropolitan Council Chair Adam Duininck
The Roll With Us Transit Challenge is sponsored by: Neighborhoods Organizing for Change, Catholic Charities of St. Paul & Mpls., Fresh Energy, MPIRG, Sierra Club North Star Chapter, Transit for Livable Communities, TakeAction MN, ATU Local 1005, MN Center for Environmental Advocacy, Alliance for Metropolitan Stability, Summit Academy OIC, Minnesota Environmental Partnership, ISAIAH
Joe Klein is a Green Transportation intern at the Sierra Club North Star Chapter. He is majoring in Geography and Urban Studies at Macalester College.