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Old 05-24-2011, 10:24 AM
 
1,508 posts, read 964,121 times
Reputation: 766
Default Metro Atlanta is No. 3 in gas guzzling

Another reason we need better transit options...



Metro Atlanta is No. 3 in gas guzzling


Metro Atlanta is No. 3 in gas guzzling | The Biz Beat
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Old 05-24-2011, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
45 posts, read 31,195 times
Reputation: 55
Great post LynnHarris.

Metro Atlanta (citizens, businesses, and governments) definitely needs to find incentives that encourage businesses to setup shop in areas near exisiting heavy rail stations and high density areas (Perimeter, Buckhead, Lindbergh, Midtown, Downtown). If the streets were safer and schools were better, people would look at higher density areas that were closer to their workplace as logical residential options.

1) MARTA needs to work more closely with developers to increase business and residential options near their rail stations (Lindbergh Center is a good model - walking across huge parking lots at Brookhaven or Chamblee are not good models)

2) Parents and School Districts need to put in the time, hard work, and investments, to increase test scores and school reputations. It's no accident that North Fulton and North Cobb have more parent involvement and also have above average test scores and reputations. There are great schools all over the Atlanta Metro Area - where parents are involved, achievement and reputation is better.

3) Citizens, Police, and City/County governments need to have a firm and no-nonsense approach to crime. Investments in uniformed and undercover police would pay future dividends. I would like to see some innovative approaches to both violent and non-violent offenders - Perhaps offering a Free one-way Delta ticket to Las Vegas and a C-note once the convicted offenders serve their jail time. Definitely need to clean up the druggies, hookers, aggressive panhandlers - not good role models for our children. Until children are safe on our streets, parents will prefer the suburbs.
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Old 05-24-2011, 12:13 PM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,112 posts, read 20,433,548 times
Reputation: 4643
The Yahoo version (mostly the same): America

The problem with Atlanta drivers is that most people do not plan their errands right. I have an entire neighborhood of people around me who will come and go from their homes literally a half dozen (or more) times per evening, after work. Go to the dry cleaners, and come home. Ten minutes later, go pick up dinner, and bring it back. A while later, go to Home Depot or the store to get groceries, and then come back - add a few trips during the week to take Billy and Jenny to their 8 each extracurricular activities, and poof - you just consumed a small Arab nation's oil in one household. And it still doesn't take into account the 2-3 errands they run during their lunch hours at work, too! Then Mom and Dad complain about how it's the Middle East or the President's fault that their gas budget is shot to hell and they're running out of money.

We do need LOTS more transit options for day-to-day commuting to take cars off the roads and save on gas, but that's not going to curb people's whacky driving habits in general. It sounds really simple, but all you need to do is make a list of everything you need to do each day, figure out where all the places are, and do it when possible at one time - even if it means getting home a little later. Map it out - avoid left turns against traffic (where you'll sit and burn gas)... do a "loop" of places you're going. Many people actually just come and go as things come up or they remember things in their heads. We have smart phones people - use smart brains with them and you'll be amazed how organized you can be.

Other things: Coast down hills instead of staying on the gas pedal. Again, avoid left turns when possible and plan for rights (UPS proved this really DOES save a lot of gas - look it up). Tell the kiddies they can each have one big league to belong to - the other 11 need to be put on ice - seriously... each kid needs 5 things to belong to that requires Mom and Dad's taxi service to take them to and from the stuff?? Etc etc. This is all stuff that can be found online but the point is, the average person could save some serious $$$ if they just think things out and cut back on unnecessary driving (and correctly identify what really is necessary or not).
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Old 05-24-2011, 01:40 PM
 
Location: North Fulton, GA
1,033 posts, read 1,228,206 times
Reputation: 485
Great suggestions atlantagreg- I can't believe how many SUVs go back and forth many many times per day (actually per hour) in my subdivision. I also read somewhere that UPS also tries to plan routes using as many right turns as possible to cut down on time idling. There are lots of little things we could do to save a gallon here and there (sorry kids, but it is time to stay home a bit and entertain yourselves or how about hanging out with the kids in the neighborhood?)

What amazes me the most, is how many people drive around by themselves in gigantic gas guzzlers.
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Old 05-24-2011, 01:44 PM
 
1,508 posts, read 964,121 times
Reputation: 766
@roxyrn, I have also definitely seen my share of single occupant gas guzzling vehicles -- which includes my "single" neighbor who has two SUV's. When I asked once why he drives two large utility vehicles, he simply replied "because I can" and sped off... LOL
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Old 05-24-2011, 01:49 PM
 
Location: 30080
1,570 posts, read 1,869,780 times
Reputation: 841
Quote:
Originally Posted by atlantagreg30127 View Post
The Yahoo version (mostly the same): America

The problem with Atlanta drivers is that most people do not plan their errands right. I have an entire neighborhood of people around me who will come and go from their homes literally a half dozen (or more) times per evening, after work. Go to the dry cleaners, and come home. Ten minutes later, go pick up dinner, and bring it back. A while later, go to Home Depot or the store to get groceries, and then come back - add a few trips during the week to take Billy and Jenny to their 8 each extracurricular activities, and poof - you just consumed a small Arab nation's oil in one household. And it still doesn't take into account the 2-3 errands they run during their lunch hours at work, too! Then Mom and Dad complain about how it's the Middle East or the President's fault that their gas budget is shot to hell and they're running out of money.

We do need LOTS more transit options for day-to-day commuting to take cars off the roads and save on gas, but that's not going to curb people's whacky driving habits in general. It sounds really simple, but all you need to do is make a list of everything you need to do each day, figure out where all the places are, and do it when possible at one time - even if it means getting home a little later. Map it out - avoid left turns against traffic (where you'll sit and burn gas)... do a "loop" of places you're going. Many people actually just come and go as things come up or they remember things in their heads. We have smart phones people - use smart brains with them and you'll be amazed how organized you can be.

Other things: Coast down hills instead of staying on the gas pedal. Again, avoid left turns when possible and plan for rights (UPS proved this really DOES save a lot of gas - look it up). Tell the kiddies they can each have one big league to belong to - the other 11 need to be put on ice - seriously... each kid needs 5 things to belong to that requires Mom and Dad's taxi service to take them to and from the stuff?? Etc etc. This is all stuff that can be found online but the point is, the average person could save some serious $$$ if they just think things out and cut back on unnecessary driving (and correctly identify what really is necessary or not).
Most of this could be nixed with trains that go to more than a couple of spots in the city though. If I had an option to get on Marta at Cumberland and go into the city i'd use it.. and often. The bus from Cumberland isnt even an option as it takes that thing forever and a day to come. Believe me, I tried it.
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Old 05-24-2011, 02:38 PM
 
Location: Dacula, GA
152 posts, read 276,753 times
Reputation: 62
So are you telling me that those locations in New Jersey, California, and Washington on that list have no public transportation? Please, people on here are usually drooling about their systems. The bottom line is Atlanta is an expansive region, unlike your landlocked Boston or NYC or Philly, etc. And vehicles are necessary, and the results would be the same if everyone was driving some car with a lawnmower engine.

Heck, I never leave Gwinnett county unless Im going to some event in Atlanta or driving out of state. My house, work, church, friends, and places I shop at are all in Gwinnett. However, I still rack up the miles. We live in a region with lots of parks, green spaces, room to breathe, houses on acre lots, without huge skyscrapers everywhere. I suppose this is the price you pay but I certainly thinks its worth it. I suppose we could have more public transit options if you crammed everyone in little apartments and used every inch of space, but that's not what people like myself who like the suburbs or exurbs want.
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Old 05-24-2011, 02:42 PM
 
Location: ITP - City of Atlanta Proper
6,401 posts, read 6,229,742 times
Reputation: 3572
I'm going to go with a mix of two problems.

-Lack of high capacity transit in the suburbs
-People really like to drive fast in all of Atlanta.

That last point is especially true in the city. There's nothing like hitting a curve going 50 mph.

PS

^The above is not an admission of guilt on the part of waronxmas of any law breaking.
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:17 PM
 
88 posts, read 99,272 times
Reputation: 103
The problem with the current situation in Atlanta did not happen overnight. The city gives a building permit to anyone for anything without regard to how the current infrastructure will handle the increased traffic. For example, In the five years I lived in Smyrna/Vinings area I saw countless stripmalls go up along the east west connector. Also when the economy was chugging along they would create these mini housing developments everywhere again with no regard to infrastructure, open space parks etc. Combine that with huge population growth in the area and you are going to have traffic problems. That being said Atlanta has always been heavily influenced by the real estate/developer industry and as long as they are making money and you have politicians that care more about money than the quality of life planned and controlled city development brings, nothing is going to change
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:37 PM
 
Location: ITP - City of Atlanta Proper
6,401 posts, read 6,229,742 times
Reputation: 3572
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacnwbound View Post
The problem with the current situation in Atlanta did not happen overnight. The city gives a building permit to anyone for anything without regard to how the current infrastructure will handle the increased traffic. For example, In the five years I lived in Smyrna/Vinings area I saw countless stripmalls go up along the east west connector.
I'm not sure if you noticed what you did here, but how exactly is the city of Atlanta resposible for what happens in Smyrna/Vinings?

The city of Atlanta's zoning laws are notoriously strict and I wish people would stop acting like because something crazy happens in another place that is "Atlanta's problem".

With that said, a big problem with METRO ATLANTA is that planning is not at all cohesive between cities, towns and counties. Even cities are often at odds with the county they are in over planning. The solution would be to start planning more regionally and hopefully this new transit bill will be the beginning of that. It's going to take a long, long time to fix that though.
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