A Metropolitan Transit System trolley. Photo courtesy MTS

San Diego Metropolitan Transit System officials will host three more public webinars this month to present plans to expand and improve mass transit throughout the region.

The plans include a new trolley line to the airport, more frequent bus and trolley service, free rides for students through the 12th grade, a people mover in Sorrento Valley, and optionally a new “Purple Line” trolley line from Chula Vista to Kearny Mesa.

The draft plans are the latest development in MTS’ work toward a possible ballot measure in November to ask voters to approve a half-cent sales tax for transit improvement. The tax would raise as much as $24.5 billion.

During the 45-minute webinars, participants can submit questions and respond to online polls.

The initial webinar was held Thursday. The remaining three are:

  • Wednesday, Feb. 19 at 7 a.m.
  • Thursday, Feb. 20 at 9:30 a.m.
  • Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 5:30 p.m. (in Spanish)

The transit plans are designed to speed commute times, ease access to jobs and schools, and reduce vehicle miles traveled, which in turn will reduce traffic congestion, reduce air pollution and help the region achieve climate action goals.

Called Elevate SD 2020, the MTS effort, which includes significant public input, seeks to improve the transit network in a way that provides immediate solutions to commuting challenges.

MTS currently operates 95 bus routes and three trolley lines on 53 miles of double-tracked railway. Every weekday 300,000 passenger trips are taken on buses and trolleys in 10 cities and unincorporated areas of the county.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.