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Old 08-17-2011, 05:49 PM
 
12,912 posts, read 20,985,787 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aries4118 View Post
...
So--do you think it would still be faster to build light metro (straighter routes, grade separated) than heavy rail? I understand about cost--only slightly cheaper...due to the cheaper track of light metro.

I guess this answers my question...

Quote:
Originally Posted by testa50 View Post
I have to imagine timeframe and difficulty of track construction for the two is more or less similar, assuming you are building tracks across a field or something. Tens of millions of dollars of materials orders will get you bumped up in the priority list; putting the physical tracks together is the easy part.


...


Or does it?
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Old 08-17-2011, 07:13 PM
 
906 posts, read 1,441,054 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtcorndog View Post
Agreed. Perhaps as an alternative, the light rail could start at grade and utilize the 17th street bridge to Atlantic Station and then use Northside Drive. That is the only alternative I can think of. If that is the case, I see it being slow, which is my problem with the light rail systems I've ridden in the past. I'd think that MARTA from Cumberland to Art Center would be a 12-15 minute ride max if done at the speeds of the current system (with 3-4 stops). I don't think a light rail system with the alignment I described would be even close to that, but I could be wrong.
If memory serves, the Beltline folks earlier this year had almost this exact route as one of the "spur" proposals for their various possible pitches to add to the penny tax list. They included several segments of the current Beltline path (which ultimately made the list), but interestingly they were also thinking about east-west connections (e.g., along North Avenue).

One of the lines went along 17th St. over to Arts Center. I believe one of the project directors, pointing to the map at a study group I attended, said one of the things they were talking about was running rail from Arts Center over 17th and up to 75 on Northside. Or to create some sort of connection between the Beltline path and this Cumberland/Arts Center connection.

Don't know how this is all going to come together. But I'm psyched.

I really do think they need to link Atlantic Station up to something, either via this light rail line or the Beltline itself.
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Old 08-17-2011, 07:25 PM
 
12,912 posts, read 20,985,787 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aries4118 View Post
I guess this answers my question...





Or does it?
testa50--

One last question before you think I'm totally annoying--


If the right-of-way already exists, would you still say the time frame to construct light metro vs. heavy rail is more or less similar?
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:45 PM
 
3,207 posts, read 4,508,061 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aries4118 View Post
testa50--

One last question before you think I'm totally annoying--


If the right-of-way already exists, would you still say the time frame to construct light metro vs. heavy rail is more or less similar?
I don't see a reason it would be massively different, assuming the corridors have similar characteristics. I would guess the tracks take a lot less time to build than the stations and bridges and tunnels and stuff.
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:49 PM
 
3,207 posts, read 4,508,061 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waronxmas View Post
The spur for the Northwest line that was originally supposed to go to Cobb (and Northside drive under the original "final" MARTA plan) can be seen right here:

Bing Maps - driving directions, routes, and traffic



As you can see, the subway box is curiously wider on the right hand side than it needs to be for the two lines that enter it, but that is not all. The subway box actually extends much further out than the one currently exposed outside, but I suppose that it was sealed and covered since a line was built going NW. You can see it if you stand on the first car going North just behind the conductor and look really quickly right before the train leaves the tunnel. This is much safer than going down there on foot and probably a lot more legal too. Plus I bet MARTA is a bit careful about people going down there after a guy was killed at that location several years ago while attempting to enter the subway box.

Compare this to the subway box on the Blue Line after Asbhy Street station going west (the spur for the Proctor Creek line is underground):
Very interesting stuff. I'll try to get on the train between Arts Center and Lindbergh sometime this week to check it out. The alignment looks a bit strange as they come out of the tunnel, indeed.
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:52 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
7,732 posts, read 11,769,635 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by testa50 View Post
Very interesting stuff. I'll try to get on the train between Arts Center and Lindbergh sometime this week to check it out. The alignment looks a bit strange as they come out of the tunnel, indeed.
I'm on the train every day, and it is clearly visible branching off to the right (it is even lighted).

The original plan was for this NW branch to "fly over" the NE line and I-85, ending at Northside Drive. If only.........
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:40 AM
bu2
 
8,969 posts, read 5,668,100 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waronxmas View Post
That is correct.



The Beltline as far as I know has not called for any streets to be shut down. The line itself already exist, so when the transit is put in then it will be just like a railroad crossing imagine where the barriers will come down when the train passes and then drivers can go on their merry way. But this sounds like a matter of you not wanting to change your ways. When the Beltline is in and integrated with MARTA rail and bus service you will have most likely a more efficient way of getting around the city aside from using a car.

I was referring to virtually shutting down a street in the latest version of the Beltline light rail. When it heads out of the beltline onto one of those already stifled streets like Ponce or North, it will make it very difficult for auto traffic. I have a right not to change my ways. 96% of people in the Atlanta area DON'T use mass transit. And that number won't dramatically increase unless people start having more time than money, in which case we have more serious problems.



What stifling traffic are you talking about though in the City of Atlanta? The only bad traffic in the city is where there are entrances on to the highway, Peachtree during rush hour, and a few avenues (Piedmont, Northside, Ponce, Memorial) that get congested. Those areas all have transit proposals to alleviate that. The rest of the city...no where near "stifling traffic".

Unfortunately I fear these transit proposals make it worse.




Le sigh

1. MARTA had to cut service because it ran into a budget shortfall caused by being required by the Federal government to replace the train control system. This was problem since they had already allocated most of their capital dollars to other projects and since they are extremely restricted on how they can use money they are not able to effectively save for emergencies like this.

2. The cuts were not caused because "no one rides" MARTA. MARTA has on average 460,000 riders per day for bus and rail. Only six other transit operations (NYC, DC, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Los Angeles) have more rider per day and that is mostly due to all of those cities being a lot larger than Atlanta.

Again you misinterpret. IMO hardly anyone will ride the beltline light rail. If that's the case it will require huge operating subsidies which will create deficits which will require cuts in other service that people actually do use and sometimes are very dependent on such as heavy rail and buses.




3. Turning the Beltline into a dedicated bus route is the worst idea possible. It would be able to serve the needed capacity, ruin the surrounding greenspace, and in general is just stupid.

4. The Beltline goes "nowhere"? The Beltline cuts through 40 neighborhoods including most of Midtown, Buckhead, the West End, Grant Park, the Old Fourth Ward and currently along it's route there are approximately 100,000 residents. I see this as being no more relevant as the people who say things like "MARTA goes no where" which is just plain ridiculous.

I find it funny though that you were lambasting the Beltline being built because the area is supposedly not dense (which isn't true since most of the neighborhoods it goes through are the densest and oldest in the city) and at the same time argue against the city building aspect of the Beltline that will bringing new development and residents. The Beltline is a lot more than just transit, parks, redevelopment. It's about building a new city and taking Atlanta to the next stage.
You have just thoroughly convinced me of the uselessness of the beltline.
People opposed Amtrak in the beltline because it was not "consistent" with the area which is there because trains used to run there. People who don't agree with you are stupid. Other people are ridiculous. The rest of the area should support an economic development project in the city of Atlanta and Fulton County that might take development from Vinings, Kirkwood, Brookhaven, Doraville, etc. You talk about an area which is overwhelmingly single family homes as being dense and include Buckhead (which is dense) but is not in this phase of the project.

People who are so narrow minded as to call names because people don't agree with them aren't worth talking to and obviously don't make reasoned decisions. Adios.
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:47 AM
 
Location: ITP - City of Atlanta Proper
7,797 posts, read 11,731,309 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bu2 View Post
You have just thoroughly convinced me of the uselessness of the beltline.
People opposed Amtrak in the beltline because it was not "consistent" with the area which is there because trains used to run there. People who don't agree with you are stupid. Other people are ridiculous. The rest of the area should support an economic development project in the city of Atlanta and Fulton County that might take development from Vinings, Kirkwood, Brookhaven, Doraville, etc. You talk about an area which is overwhelmingly single family homes as being dense and include Buckhead (which is dense) but is not in this phase of the project.

People who are so narrow minded as to call names because people don't agree with them aren't worth talking to and obviously don't make reasoned decisions. Adios.
The Beltine route is overwhelming single family? Not only is that not true, but when it is true in many cases those SFH are of the early 20th variety that are dense.

Secondly, why does the city of Atlanta always have to play second fiddle to all of these other places? If those places you listed want their own special project, they need to come up with one.

But again, it is moot point to argue because the Beltline will be built and is supported by the majority of residents. Your opinion is in the minority and seems to be based on nothing truly tangible.
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:59 AM
bu2
 
8,969 posts, read 5,668,100 times
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If you design an arrow-straight, grade-separated system that WILL have similar top speeds to MARTA, you are going to spend so much that you might as well just build MARTA. I think there's a lot to be said for making as much of your transit compatible with the existing technology you already have (for example, Portland, which has invested very heavily in LRT and has a whole circulator system downtown on the surface streets, would be rather foolish to spend a billion dollars building a tunnel under downtown for a brand new subway system).

We happen to have a badass subway, too. Let's expand it.[/quote]



I agree with you whole-heartedly about expanding MARTA. Nationwide there is this current infatuation with light rail. It makes no sense when you already have something better and can have a better integrated system. And putting a slow light rail without any grade separation deep in the suburbs is much more expensive and slower than HOV lanes with park-n-ride buses. So you could build a faster, better integrated, slightly more expensive system with MARTA than with grade separated light rail. Or you have the choice between cheap light rail or bus service that is much cheaper and provides better service than the cheap light rail. I don't see any reasoned thought process in their selection of light rail. Are they just being trendy or are they settling for a whole lot less effectiveness in order to build a few more outlying miles that don't add as much value or maybe they just don't want to be connected to the city of Atlanta to "keep out the riff-raff."
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Old 08-18-2011, 09:00 AM
bu2
 
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I was pleased that the initial indication was that Emory was going to be light rail, but they are now proposing heavy rail.
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