ROCHESTER, Minn. - As the city prepares for its expected growth, leaders are asking for the community's input in transportation.
That's why the city of Rochester and Destination Medical Center held open houses for people to learn and give input on Tuesday afternoon and evening.
In a downtown that's already filled with traffic, city leaders are looking to launch bus rapid transit.
The proposed Rochester rapid transit corridor would run along 2nd Street SW and South Broadway Avenue.
The rapid transit buses would have a dedicated lane. The idea is that the mode of transportation would cut down on people driving cars, as well as time with service every 10 minutes.
"It's a way in which we can move more people through the city," Chris Hall, one of the project consultants, said, "and connect more people to jobs, to services, to entertainment, to culture, and all of the things that make life great here."
People no longer relying on their cars could lead to some changes for people who work downtown, like police.
"Less traffic, but a tremendous amount more foot traffic," Rochester Police Officer Dan Swanson said. "We already have a bike unit right now. I could see some expansion on that, and for the police department looking in other modes of transportation other than a squad car."
Some residents who live along the proposed corridor are already supportive.
"Having your own car is a convenience until your stuck in bumper to bumper traffic or circling, looking for a place to park," Edward Cohen said.
Leaders are wanting feedback from everyone in order to get it done right.
"Transit is the backbone of any strong community, particularly in the downtown area," Lisa Clarke, the executive director of Destination Medical Center Economic Development Agency, said. "So we have an opportunity to do it right on the front end. We're learning from many cities across the country and across the nation, but this is our community. This is time for our community members to tell us what they want, so we can get it right for them."
Tuesday's open houses are the first of several events happening over the next few months.
The next set of open houses will be held in April.