City's White Elephant Now Looks Like a Transit Workhorse
By SEAN D. HAMILL
MORGANTOWN, W.Va., June 4 - During its troubled years of construction and testing in the early 1970s, the Personal Rapid Transit system that snakes through this hilly college town was derided as a fiasco and a waste of money that perhaps should be dynamited rather than finished.
But now, 32 years after it began operating, the P.R.T. - as most people here call it - is lauded as probably the best answer to the traffic that has found its way to these increasingly popular Appalachian hills.
"I would hate to see Morgantown without the P.R.T. system," said Mayor Ronald Justice. "We're a small town with big traffic issues, and the P.R.T. could be the reason we're able to continue our growth."
Originally built to shuttle students and employees between West Virginia University's two campuses, which sit two miles apart, Morgantown now sees it as more than just a way to get students to class on time. With commuting times increasing in the region, the university, which operates the system, is considering expanding it.