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Old 06-02-2018, 05:02 PM
 
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Are there really people in this thread that think it is cheaper to add capacity (per person per mile) to highways than rail in an urban area?

And honestly, even if you do somehow think that, do you think it is possible to build enough lanes to move 90%+ of people effectively around a large city by car alone?

 
Old 06-02-2018, 05:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JMatl View Post
None of this has any bearing on why the MTR is profitable. They've figured out how to unlock the value of their land around the stations, plain and simple.

The new Brightline venture in Florida is using the same model, by unlocking the value of the historic Florida East Coast Railroad properties they own in the Downtowns of Miami, Ft. Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. Ridership is already far exceeding projections, and it's being extended next year to an already completed massive multi-model terminal at Orlando International Airport. I predict this is going to be a roaring success, and they will be profitable.

https://gobrightline.com/

Even if it isn't profitable, it's extremely shortsighted to just write off all rail.
Yep. Rail transit partnering with dense real estate developing is far more financially viable than the bankrupt highway trust fund.

Car transportation needs and receives far more of a subsudy.

If you dropped the subsidies there would be a big shift away from highway usage and to rail transit.
 
Old 06-02-2018, 06:35 PM
 
28,529 posts, read 25,278,616 times
Reputation: 9825
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsvh View Post
Yep. Rail transit partnering with dense real estate developing is far more financially viable than the bankrupt highway trust fund.

Car transportation needs and receives far more of a subsudy.

If you dropped the subsidies there would be a big shift away from highway usage and to rail transit.
I think a lot of us just love the convenience, flexibility and comfort of the automobile. It's hard to get people to give that up in this modern day go-go world. Folks have things to do and places to be!
 
Old 06-02-2018, 06:50 PM
 
10,142 posts, read 7,139,880 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arjay57 View Post
I think a lot of us just love the convenience, flexibility and comfort of the automobile. It's hard to get people to give that up in this modern day go-go world. Folks have things to do and places to be!
Certainly understable! Don't think we ever want to deny people the option of living a car-based lifestyle but we cannot expect it to be an affordable, effective method for moving the vast majority of people around a large city.
 
Old 06-02-2018, 09:17 PM
 
4,504 posts, read 2,985,574 times
Reputation: 2949
Quote:
Originally Posted by JMatl View Post
Ridership is already far exceeding projections, and it's being extended next year to an already completed massive multi-model terminal at Orlando International Airport. I predict this is going to be a roaring success, and they will be profitable.

https://gobrightline.com/

Even if it isn't profitable, it's extremely shortsighted to just write off all rail.
Where are you getting your stats saying Brightline is far exceeding projections? Because I'm reading differently:

Non-scientific Source: https://www.mypalmbeachpost.com/busi...phQYy7Ywv6jFO/

Quote:
Brightline doesn’t release ridership counts. To get a glimpse into the rail line’s early progress, a dozen Palm Beach Post reporters rode 44 randomly selected trains over a six-week period and counted how many people were on board.

On average, 50 riders took the trains reviewed by The Post, enough to fill about 20 percent of the seats.

The lowest ridership encountered by Post reporters occurred during the weekday rush and late-night Friday trains. With higher ridership in the middle of the day, the weekday average rose to 36.
They do note that hourly ridership numbers are higher than anticipated. But if a few hundred people a day is higher than anticipated, then it seems like they shot pretty low on their estimates.

From Wikipedia:

Quote:
Reporters have estimated from daily counting in Spring 2018 that the average ridership has reached about 30,000 per month during the introductory service from Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale.[55] The company itself announced that the ridership has been triple to what had been expected.
30,000 per month is about 1,000 per day. If that's triple what was expected, then they expected only 333 people per day to ride.

But anyway...I think the BrightLine is great. Haven't ridden it, but I saw its rails and stations while I was down there around New Years.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jsvh View Post
Car transportation needs and receives far more of a subsudy.
In terms of raw numbers, of course. Because car transportation moves probably 95% or more of all transportation countrywide, and has a network hundreds of times larger. But in terms of a percentage of total spending or on a per-person basis, transit far and away receives more subsidy. And that's okay.

Quote:
If you dropped the subsidies there would be a big shift away from highway usage and to rail transit.
Yeah. If you dropped subsidies to roads and subsidized transit more than it already is, you would probably see some shift towards it from people who are able to make that shift. The others would just be required to spend far more, while you get your subsidized ride.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jetgraphics View Post
You're so right - labor is so free that poor Chinee coolies can't afford to buy 25% of the world automobile production.
Car sales hit record in 2017; 25% sold in China - World - Chinadaily.com.cn
Global sales of passenger cars and trucks are expected to surpass 90 million for the first time in 2017.
27.5 million sold in China
17.5 million sold in USA

. . . .
Uh, no. Land and houses can't be "just taken" by developers.

https://www.cnn.com/2015/05/19/asia/...ses/index.html
China's 'nail houses': The homeowners who refused to budge
Good God, man...I can't make heads or tails of what you're saying half the time. But, if you're trying to use a rail line in a country with very, very cheap labor, low parts costs, and through extremely rural areas against roads in the US, then use an example which costs nearly 50% more per mile than your 8-lane highway example, I really don't know what else to say.

Look, in almost all cases, rail costs more per mile than roads. That is perfectly okay.
 
Old 06-03-2018, 12:20 AM
 
1,255 posts, read 544,568 times
Reputation: 1052
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsvh View Post
Are there really people in this thread that think it is cheaper to add capacity (per person per mile) to highways than rail in an urban area?

And honestly, even if you do somehow think that, do you think it is possible to build enough lanes to move 90%+ of people effectively around a large city by car alone?
I honestly, cannot 100% say yes or no. I haven't really researched into enough data.. but I will say that its easy to underestimate the cost of a functional commuter rail because there is much more to it than just building the path and railroad. They are responsible for the actual means of commute as well (the actual trains) where was building a highway that cost is put on the commuter...

I personally doubt either of these are a true consideration when considering building a highway versus a railroad.. (or basically stating, a place that NEEDS mass transit needs to get it even if the highway is cheaper.) but I state this to emphasize that with highways, the only thing they have to pay for is the actual infrastructure. with railroads, they have to pay for everything, including the vehicle and safety.

This isn't however saying that I believe Atlanta needs to can railroad projects and build the whole place up with Highways though... cost aside Atlanta desperately needs more rail options and in further distances... I just dont think for the feasibility that railroads could cover as much ground as Highways can OTP. ITP that gap is made up by bus service. OTP is would be a bit of a pain.
 
Old 06-03-2018, 08:43 AM
 
1,404 posts, read 1,604,094 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetgraphics View Post
I apologize if facts that refute your beliefs are annoying.

But rubber wheels on steel rails do NOT have the same efficiency as steel wheels on steel rails. That is certainly changing the argument to suit yourself.

When people have a choice, they tend to choose the least expensive means to fulfill their desires and needs.

Once all subsidies and taxes are removed, the fact remains that "old fashioned" steel wheel on steel rail outperforms all other forms of land transportation.

Adapting that format to cities to maximize benefits is another topic.

The fact that Atlanta's surface area is finite and fixed, while population keeps growing, and thus transportation needs keep growing, makes it self evident that the automobile / petroleum / pavement paradigm is not supportable for the long term.

https://www.ajc.com/news/local-govt-...6L26zn4jgVBrN/

Thousands of people are moving to metro Atlanta from around the country, increasing the region’s population to nearly 5.8 million, according to the U.S. Census.
Metro Atlanta gained the fourth-most residents in the nation last year, with 90,650 additional people making the area their home.
The Atlanta area is the ninth-largest metropolitan statistical area in the country. The region grew by 1.6 percent from 2015 to 2016, boosting its population to 5,789,700.
- - - - -

Projecting an annual population growth of 1.6% translates to a doubling of population in 45 years.
(Doubling time can be approximated by dividing 72 by the percentage growth rate.)


There is no way to "double" road capacity by simply building more roads when constrained by existing buildings.

Ever widening roads, while forcing people to live in tall high rise buildings, is not advisable, to say the least.

Atlanta, and other growing cities, can benefit more from rail based mass transit that can scale with population growth.


I think there are a couple of key points is this post. This board has the freakish ability to debate this topic endlessly but the bolded statement is the simple undeniable truth for metro Atlanta. There may be some ability to connect roadways and increase capacity on the arterial network and they should be pursued but those are going to be very limited opportunities in the core counties at this point. Alternative means of transportation is in reality the only way forward for Atlanta.

The second point that you allude to is that there seems to be a belief system, especially in this part of the country, that huge highways and suburban sprawl are essential to American "freedom" and that actual smart urban planning that produces wonderfully livable cities all over the world is somehow "communism".
 
Old 06-03-2018, 11:48 AM
 
1,255 posts, read 544,568 times
Reputation: 1052
Quote:
Originally Posted by J2rescue View Post
I think there are a couple of key points is this post. This board has the freakish ability to debate this topic endlessly but the bolded statement is the simple undeniable truth for metro Atlanta. There may be some ability to connect roadways and increase capacity on the arterial network and they should be pursued but those are going to be very limited opportunities in the core counties at this point. Alternative means of transportation is in reality the only way forward for Atlanta.

The second point that you allude to is that there seems to be a belief system, especially in this part of the country, that huge highways and suburban sprawl are essential to American "freedom" and that actual smart urban planning that produces wonderfully livable cities all over the world is somehow "communism".
There are cities far more dense and populated with similar geographic limitations (and in the grand scheme of things, Atlanta does not really have serious geographic limitations compared to some place like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, ect.)

Atlanta may have finite space but in the grand scheme is one of the least dense major cities in this nation. Atlanta has ALOT of open and undeveloped areas / sprawls between developed areas in comparison the most other major cities in its league and many of which have less congestion problems than Atlanta does... Atlanta's main problem has nothing to do with land use or resources but a blatant lack of planning and foresight.

Also, if you think those Asian cities are just so spectacular and have it all figured out just because they have spectacular infrastructure...try living in Tokyo... You will need a can opener to peel you out of one of their metro's during commute hours. Don't even think of driving.
 
Old 06-03-2018, 01:29 PM
bu2
 
9,261 posts, read 5,937,026 times
Reputation: 3689
Quote:
Originally Posted by Need4Camaro View Post
There are cities far more dense and populated with similar geographic limitations (and in the grand scheme of things, Atlanta does not really have serious geographic limitations compared to some place like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, ect.)

Atlanta may have finite space but in the grand scheme is one of the least dense major cities in this nation. Atlanta has ALOT of open and undeveloped areas / sprawls between developed areas in comparison the most other major cities in its league and many of which have less congestion problems than Atlanta does... Atlanta's main problem has nothing to do with land use or resources but a blatant lack of planning and foresight.

Also, if you think those Asian cities are just so spectacular and have it all figured out just because they have spectacular infrastructure...try living in Tokyo... You will need a can opener to peel you out of one of their metro's during commute hours. Don't even think of driving.
Really. As I have said, I saw what Houston has done in improving its arterial network starting with a plan in 1982. They had a bunch of disconnected two lane roads outside Loop 610 (much like Atlanta) and made massive improvements. A loop like 610 would run roughly through Decatur and Buckhead, just outside the beltline. Outside Decatur and Buckhead there is often room. And there is a huge amount of room outside 285. There is some room closer in. Lennox Road and Lindberg are a couple of obvious examples. There are opportunities on the west side through industrial property. Atlanta's road network fails buses and carpools, not just single occupant vehicles. Roughly 2% use rail. Rail will not be the majority of transit, let alone all travel.

And again, its not just about commuting. Atlanta's road network fails during non-rush hours. Its true you can't build enough roads to get rid of rush hour traffic. But if you have non-rush hour stop and go traffic on a regular basis, well you can't build enough transit to get rid of that.
 
Old 06-03-2018, 02:09 PM
 
1,404 posts, read 1,604,094 times
Reputation: 826
Quote:
Originally Posted by Need4Camaro View Post
There are cities far more dense and populated with similar geographic limitations (and in the grand scheme of things, Atlanta does not really have serious geographic limitations compared to some place like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, ect.)

Atlanta may have finite space but in the grand scheme is one of the least dense major cities in this nation. Atlanta has ALOT of open and undeveloped areas / sprawls between developed areas in comparison the most other major cities in its league and many of which have less congestion problems than Atlanta does... Atlanta's main problem has nothing to do with land use or resources but a blatant lack of planning and foresight.

Also, if you think those Asian cities are just so spectacular and have it all figured out just because they have spectacular infrastructure...try living in Tokyo... You will need a can opener to peel you out of one of their metro's during commute hours. Don't even think of driving.
Correction:
Atlanta is the least dense major city (population greater than 5 million ) ever. And that is certainly a part of the transportation problem. It requires a high percentage of the population to use a car for everything and renders mass transit ineffective.

I have not mentioned an Asian city or any specific city at all for that matter. But I will point out that there is a vast array of potential possibilities that this city and region can plan for between its current status and the complete opposite end of spectrum that exists in places such as Tokyo. To say that we don't want density because we don't want to be like the largest metro on the planet is a straw man.


Quote:
Atlanta's main problem has nothing to do with land use (i.e. planning) or resources but a blatant lack of planning and foresight.
I'm not sure what you mean here but it seems very contradictory.
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