In what is conspicuously not being called a debate, supporters and critics of the Amp bus rapid transit proposal will convene for a “moderated discussion” for the first time next Wednesday. The public forum — first in a yearlong series of community meetings from the Nashville Scene called Assembly Required — will be moderated by the paper’s news editor Steve Cavendish.
Representing Stop Amp will be attorney Dianne Neal and Vanderbilt economics professor Malcom Getz. Nashville Chamber of Commerce president Ralph Schulz will speak on behalf of the Amp Coalition, alongside a member of MTA’s Amp design team.
The proposed $175 million, 7.1 mile high-speed bus line would run between near Belle Meade on West End Avenue and East Nashville’s Five Points.
Last November, Stop Amp spokesman and would be Amp-affected car dealer Lee Beaman challenged Amp Coalition head and also would be Amp-affected St. Thomas Hospital’s CEO Mike Schatzlein to a debate. Schatzlein declined the offer:
We welcome the opportunity to talk with anyone about the Amp, but prefer a dialogue rather than a ‘debate,’ to address these very important issues in a civil way.
The Nashville Scene must have convinced the Amp Coalition this would be just such a dialog.
The forum will take place at 6pm Wednesday, February 12th at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center. It’s free and open to the public.