PRT Is on the Table for County

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Region to include personal rapid transit PRT in transportation study

Greenville County Council voted recently to help include personal rapid transit (PRT) in the Greenville County Economic Development Corporation’s (GCEDC) 2010 Multimodal Transit Corridor Alternatives Feasibility Study. The study focuses on researching high-capacity transit between Greenville, Mauldin, Simpsonville and Fountain Inn along an abandoned railroad right-of-way.

The GCEDC requested a total of $20,000, $12,000 from the county’s grant-matching account and $8,000 from Greenville Pickens Anderson Transportation Study’s (GPATS) account. Council opted to approve $2,000 out of the community grant-matching fund and Councilor Fred Payne said he would help make up the $10,000 difference with his community grant fund and other sources. The GPATS plan calls for rapid transit use in the Upstate by 2030.

PRT systems use vehicles that travel on guideways, often carrying several people at once in “podcars.” The vehicles are often electric and run on rubber wheels rather than tracks. Heathrow Airport in London currently uses a PRT system for transportation of passengers. A system with larger vehicles has been used at West Virginia University since the 1970s.

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