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View Poll Results: Which city has the best rail system?
Baltimore 10 9.09%
Cleveland 10 9.09%
Pittsburgh 9 8.18%
St Louis 9 8.18%
Minneapolis/St Paul 12 10.91%
Seattle 15 13.64%
Portland 33 30.00%
Other 12 10.91%
Voters: 110. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-14-2017, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Seattle WA, USA
3,602 posts, read 1,814,458 times
Reputation: 2236

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Quote:
Originally Posted by goat314 View Post
I tried to rank the systems based off current ridership, system coverage, and last year it was expanded. I think this presents the best method of showing how much the systems are used, how much of the metropolitan area they service, and the trajectory for system growth/expansion.

Ridership Ranking

1. Portland - 124,200
2. Minneapolis - 72,900
3. Seattle - 66,203
4. Baltimore - 22,800 + 36,800 (heavy rail) = 59,600
5. St. Louis - 45,800
6. Cleveland - 6,810 + 17,587 (heavy rail) = 24,397
7. Pittsburgh - 21,324

System Size

1. Portland - 60 miles/97 stations
2. Baltimore - 33 miles/33 stations + 15.5 miles/14 stations (heavy rail) = 48.5 miles/47 stations
3. St. Louis - 46 miles/37 stations
4. Cleveland - 15.3 miles/34 stations + 19 miles/18 stations (heavy rail) = 34.3 miles/52 stations
5. Pittsburgh - 26.2 miles/53 stations
6. Minneapolis - 21.8 miles/37 stations
7. Seattle - 20.4 miles/16 stations


Last Expansion

1. Seattle - 2016
2. Portland - 2015
3. Minneapolis - 2014
4. Pittsburgh - 2012
5. St. Louis - 2006
6. Baltimore - 1997
7. Cleveland - 1996

Average Ranking

1. Portland 1.3 - high ridership, large coverage, recent expansions
2. Minneapolis 3.6/Seattle 3.6 - high ridership, small coverage, recent expansions
3. Baltimore 4 - moderate expansion, large coverage, last expansion 20 years ago
4. St. Louis 4.3 moderate ridership, large coverage, last expansion 10 years ago
5. Pittsburgh 5.3 low ridership, small coverage recently expanded 5 years ago
6. Cleveland 5.6 low ridership, moderate coverage, last expansion 20 years ago

*If we do not include heavy rail and just include light rail, the rankings stay the same except Baltimore and St. Louis switch places.
What about adding street cars, commuter train, monorail etc.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:52 AM
 
Location: Miami-Jax
5,796 posts, read 6,351,083 times
Reputation: 3135
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjimmy24 View Post
People clearly never have ridden the RTA, seeing it at people's bottom of their rankings.
Since you mentioned that, I've been on all 7 systems listed here within the past decade. That hardly makes me anything close to an expert, but at least I can claim that.

But I didnt have the RTA at the bottom of my ranking
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Old 08-14-2017, 11:12 AM
 
429 posts, read 278,048 times
Reputation: 275
Quote:
Originally Posted by goat314 View Post
I tried to rank the systems based off current ridership, system coverage, and last year it was expanded. I think this presents the best method of showing how much the systems are used, how much of the metropolitan area they service, and the trajectory for system growth/expansion.

Ridership Ranking

1. Portland - 124,200
2. Minneapolis - 72,900
3. Seattle - 66,203
4. Baltimore - 22,800 + 36,800 (heavy rail) = 59,600
5. St. Louis - 45,800
6. Cleveland - 6,810 + 17,587 (heavy rail) = 24,397
7. Pittsburgh - 21,324

System Size

1. Portland - 60 miles/97 stations
2. Baltimore - 33 miles/33 stations + 15.5 miles/14 stations (heavy rail) = 48.5 miles/47 stations
3. St. Louis - 46 miles/37 stations
4. Cleveland - 15.3 miles/34 stations + 19 miles/18 stations (heavy rail) = 34.3 miles/52 stations
5. Pittsburgh - 26.2 miles/53 stations
6. Minneapolis - 21.8 miles/37 stations
7. Seattle - 20.4 miles/16 stations


Last Expansion

1. Seattle - 2016
2. Portland - 2015
3. Minneapolis - 2014
4. Pittsburgh - 2012
5. St. Louis - 2006
6. Baltimore - 1997
7. Cleveland - 1996

Average Ranking

1. Portland 1.3 - high ridership, large coverage, recent expansions
2. Minneapolis 3.6/Seattle 3.6 - high ridership, small coverage, recent expansions
3. Baltimore 4 - moderate expansion, large coverage, last expansion 20 years ago
4. St. Louis 4.3 moderate ridership, large coverage, last expansion 10 years ago
5. Pittsburgh 5.3 low ridership, small coverage recently expanded 5 years ago
6. Cleveland 5.6 low ridership, moderate coverage, last expansion 20 years ago

*If we do not include heavy rail and just include light rail, the rankings stay the same except Baltimore and St. Louis switch places.
Seattle has major expansion in the construction and planning stages that none of these other systems come close to. Over the next two decades Seattle is going to see several major lines and extensions come online, with new pieces opening up every few years (next one is 2021, then 2023, etc.) And unlike most of the other systems discussed here, these are almost entirely grade-separated (including a second subway tunnel under downtown Seattle and inner neighborhoods).

This is what exists now:



And this is what will exist within the next couple of decades:

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Old 08-14-2017, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Baltimore, MD
3,504 posts, read 2,732,635 times
Reputation: 2688
Quote:
Originally Posted by goat314 View Post
I tried to rank the systems based off current ridership, system coverage, and last year it was expanded. I think this presents the best method of showing how much the systems are used, how much of the metropolitan area they service, and the trajectory for system growth/expansion.

Ridership Ranking

1. Portland - 124,200
2. Minneapolis - 72,900
3. Seattle - 66,203
4. Baltimore - 22,800 + 36,800 (heavy rail) = 59,600
5. St. Louis - 45,800
6. Cleveland - 6,810 + 17,587 (heavy rail) = 24,397
7. Pittsburgh - 21,324

System Size

1. Portland - 60 miles/97 stations
2. Baltimore - 33 miles/33 stations + 15.5 miles/14 stations (heavy rail) = 48.5 miles/47 stations
3. St. Louis - 46 miles/37 stations
4. Cleveland - 15.3 miles/34 stations + 19 miles/18 stations (heavy rail) = 34.3 miles/52 stations
5. Pittsburgh - 26.2 miles/53 stations
6. Minneapolis - 21.8 miles/37 stations
7. Seattle - 20.4 miles/16 stations



Last Expansion

1. Seattle - 2016
2. Portland - 2015
3. Minneapolis - 2014
4. Pittsburgh - 2012
5. St. Louis - 2006
6. Baltimore - 1997
7. Cleveland - 1996

Average Ranking

1. Portland 1.3 - high ridership, large coverage, recent expansions
2. Minneapolis 3.6/Seattle 3.6 - high ridership, small coverage, recent expansions
3. Baltimore 4 - moderate expansion, large coverage, last expansion 20 years ago
4. St. Louis 4.3 moderate ridership, large coverage, last expansion 10 years ago
5. Pittsburgh 5.3 low ridership, small coverage recently expanded 5 years ago
6. Cleveland 5.6 low ridership, moderate coverage, last expansion 20 years ago

*If we do not include heavy rail and just include light rail, the rankings stay the same except Baltimore and St. Louis switch places.
Where are you getting your numbers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by grega94 View Post
What about adding street cars, commuter train, monorail etc.
Yes, why are we excluding these? I can see the argument for intercity rail being excluded (Amtrak/Acela, etc.), but not for the above. Commuter rail is just as much a part of moving within a city as light rail/rapid transit. And when we talk city on here, nine times out of ten we mean the metro. Unless OP wants to restrict mileage solely to the city proper, commuter rails are a huge part of many cities' rail system.
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Old 08-14-2017, 11:33 AM
 
1,534 posts, read 2,258,535 times
Reputation: 427
Quote:
Originally Posted by CityGuyForLife View Post
Where are you getting your numbers?



Yes, why are we excluding these? I can see the argument for intercity rail being excluded (Amtrak/Acela, etc.), but not for the above. Commuter rail is just as much a part of moving within a city as light rail/rapid transit. And when we talk city on here, nine times out of ten we mean the metro. Unless OP wants to restrict mileage solely to the city proper, commuter rails are a huge part of many cities' rail system.
That could work Seattle has 2 commuter rail lines and two street car lines with another inner city street car line under construction.
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Old 08-14-2017, 12:11 PM
 
Location: Tampa - St. Louis
1,029 posts, read 1,534,630 times
Reputation: 1387
Quote:
Originally Posted by CityGuyForLife View Post
Where are you getting your numbers?



Yes, why are we excluding these? I can see the argument for intercity rail being excluded (Amtrak/Acela, etc.), but not for the above. Commuter rail is just as much a part of moving within a city as light rail/rapid transit. And when we talk city on here, nine times out of ten we mean the metro. Unless OP wants to restrict mileage solely to the city proper, commuter rails are a huge part of many cities' rail system.
Wikipedia has the numbers with sources.

Also I'm not excluding anything. Feel free to add your own numbers, but I feel that this discussion has morphed from light rail to commuter rail to now streetcars. I thought we were specifically focusing urban mass transit (ex. light rail and heavy rail)
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:56 PM
 
Location: Eugene, OR
256 posts, read 144,490 times
Reputation: 261
Basically I agree with the poll results right now that has Portland dwarfing it's competition. Although Seattle will likely overtake in the future once all their planned expansions are implemented, especially since theirs puts the rail underground through downtown unlike PDX.
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Old 08-14-2017, 02:42 PM
 
Location: Seattle WA, USA
3,602 posts, read 1,814,458 times
Reputation: 2236
If we include all forms of rail, minus Amtrak

name: daily ridership / length / stops / ridership per mile / ridership per stop

Portland
MAX Light Rail: 116,800 / 60 mi / 97 stops / 1,946.7 per mi / 1,204.1 per stop
Portland Streetcar: 16,351 / 7.2 mi / 76 stops / 2,271.0 per mi / 215.1 per stop
WES Commuter Rail: 1,800 / 14.7 mi / 5 stops / 122.4 per mi / 360 per stop
Total: 134,951 / 81.9 mi / 178 stops / 1,647.8 per mi / 758.2 per stop

Seattle
Link Light Rail: 70,444 / 21.95 mi / 21 stops / 3,209.3 per mi / 3,354.5 per stop
Sounder Commuter Rail: 17,172 / 83 mi / 12 stops / 206.9 per mi / 1,431 per stop
Seattle Center Monorail: 7,000 / 0.96 mi / 2 stations / 7,291.7 per mi / 3,500 per stop
Seattle Streetcar: 4,950 / 3.8 mi / 17 stops / 1,302.6 per mi / 291.2 per stop
Total: 99,566 / 109.71 mi / 52 stops / 907.5 per mi / 1,914.7 per stop

Last edited by grega94; 08-14-2017 at 02:58 PM..
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:00 PM
 
8,650 posts, read 8,784,992 times
Reputation: 5191
Quote:
Originally Posted by goat314 View Post
How? I think ridership is a very good indicator of if your system is useful to it's citizenry. Poor ridership I would think indicates bad system, especially if the system has good coverage.
There other factors, for example the Heathline crosses the Red line 2 times in Cleveland so U Circle to Public Square Traffic would be split. As well as another BRT line that serves the West Flats, like the Light rail. Traffic/parking scarcity is a non issue in Cleveland compared to Seattle so there might be less incentive to take Transit. If NYC has 1/2 of the population it has the MTA would probably have 1/3rd of its current ridership because in the end Traffic drives transit usage.
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:43 PM
 
1,170 posts, read 1,180,186 times
Reputation: 994
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwillyfromphilly View Post
I agree. If you exclude the other cities in the NE Corridor, Baltimore has one of the best rail systems in the country. Portland has good rail transit but Baltimore seems to do everything better with rail transit except maybe light rail which I will give Portland the edge.

My Rankings
#1 Baltimore
#2 Portland
#3 Seattle
#4 Cleveland
#5 Denver
#6 Pittsburgh
#7 Minneapolis/St Paul
#8 St Louis



Anywho,

Portland
Seattle
Minneapolis - St. Paul
Denver

the rest
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