Improve Connecticut’s public transportation system, not its highways

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A concept sketch of U.S. Rep. John Larson's proposal to bury I-91 and I-84 underground in Hartford and East Hartford. The proposed tunnels are shown in orange and the existing highways in blue. The cloverleaf intersection would be under Pope Park.

RE: Tom Condon’s article “Larson’s tunnels: Big plan, even bigger challenge” on Nov. 15.

U.S. Rep. John Larson recently proposed the construction of underground highway tunnels into Hartford. Since there already are many road expansion proposals, we need to stop prioritizing road expansion and start prioritizing mass transit that reflects the needs of Connecticut residents in a 21st Century transportation system.

Larson estimates the highway expansion will cost a whopping $10 billion. The Department of Transportation last month rejected a I-84 tunnel plan, so why accept a similar one?

Most business leaders believe investing in infrastructure boosts Connecticut’s economy and agree with investing in low-carbon mass transit options first as these options have the highest return on investment. By directing funds toward public transportation, Connecticut can meet its climate change goals without burdening businesses.

Connecticut government officials must focus on the future, not the past. As a Connecticut college student, I want to see our funds directed toward environmentally-friendly public transit, not highway construction.

Kiddest Sinke is a student at Yale University in New Haven.

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