RTD expected to finalize cuts to R Line through Aurora

AURORA, Colo. -- RTD is expected to finalize controversial cuts to the new light rail R Line at a meeting on Tuesday night.

The service, which runs through Aurora, just opened in February after long delays.

But RTD said daily ridership is way off. Only about 40 passengers an hour are using the R Line during weekdays compared to about 200 for the A Line between Denver Union Station and Denver International Airport.

Aurora officials said making cuts now could derail development plans along the line in the future.

Some of the development includes apartments and retail that already are in the works.

And riders think the cuts are coming too soon.

“No, I do not think they've given it enough time," Omari Mitchell said. "They need to give at least three to five years, allow consumers to figure out the trains are there, figure out the schedules and go from there.

"Don't cut it."

"They're nuts," Nathan Trujillo said. "We need this out here. Everybody needs to get to work. If they cut back, they are only going to cut us back. We need all the help we can get to where we need to get."

Aurora officials also claim when the Veterans Administration hospital opens, ridership will spike.

The cuts, if approved, would got into effect next year.