A split over Alviti’s actions at RIPTA

Following R.I. Department of Transportation Director Peter Alviti’s controversial appointment as the R.I. Public Transit Authority’s board chairman, transit advocates are divided on whether Alviti is demanding needed accountability from a mismanaged agency or undermining public confidence in an underfunded service. One month into Alviti’s tenure, few dispute that RIPTA has a daunting task ahead:

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  1. Keep RIPTA well funded, don’t cut service now. The frequency and breadth of service is to be commended. More people probably should use it and I’m sure it’s vital to many. With the cost of car ownership rising, keep this as a viable and useful service. If we go through an economic downturn that includes inflation, we’ll be happy we did.

  2. Alviti’s past comments show a limited understanding of the role that transit can and should play in a regional economy – not to mention equity issues. We should be boosting ridership efforts if we have any hopes of reaching our climate goals. We as a state are extremely vulnerable to extreme weather and should be at the forefront of efforts to provide alternatives to the car.