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Old 06-08-2016, 12:03 AM
 
Location: KC
386 posts, read 810,847 times
Reputation: 389

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My sons and I went down to Science City for a while last week. Then hopped on the Streetcar to see my wife at her work in the loop. Afterward we took in the rest of the route through the river market before heading back down to Union Station where we got off. The kids loved it as did I. It was fun to see how much downtown has changed in the last 10 years. Things I knew and had experienced in first fridays and just being out and about downtown but for some reason seeing it from the trolley gave it a new perspective. It's exciting to think what the next 5 years will look like downtown and along main street in particular. Also, the train was packed. Not annoyingly so but well used as it should be. There's a lot of great energy in this city and it's a really exciting time to live here. The streetcar will just add another piece to that puzzle imo.
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Old 06-08-2016, 08:30 AM
 
1,298 posts, read 985,842 times
Reputation: 658
It was kind of insanely smart to make the Streetcar free to ride. There's absolutely no amount of revenue from fares that could compete with the enthusiasm generated by a no-hassle hop-on-hop-off won't-cost-you-a-dime ride through the city.

Ridership would have easily been cut in half, even if the fare was only $.50, plus it's expensive to maintain and enforce a ticketing system. Kudos, KC!
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:29 AM
 
12,618 posts, read 14,633,813 times
Reputation: 14131
Quote:
Originally Posted by rwiksell View Post
It was kind of insanely smart to make the Streetcar free to ride. There's absolutely no amount of revenue from fares that could compete with the enthusiasm generated by a no-hassle hop-on-hop-off won't-cost-you-a-dime ride through the city.

Ridership would have easily been cut in half, even if the fare was only $.50, plus it's expensive to maintain and enforce a ticketing system. Kudos, KC!
That is what I was going to say - that being FREE definitely is a factor in the number of riders there are.
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Old 06-08-2016, 10:31 AM
 
1,298 posts, read 985,842 times
Reputation: 658
Quote:
Originally Posted by luzianne View Post
That is what I was going to say - that being FREE definitely is a factor in the number of riders there are.
I will savor this moment :-)
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Old 06-30-2016, 06:56 AM
 
3 posts, read 1,271 times
Reputation: 15
Default Kansas city's streetcar will be a failure

Twenty years ago this month Dallas opened the first two segments of its light rail system, which is now the longest light rail system in the United States. The service was instantly popular and has been expanded incrementally many times with extensions and new routes. It now carries over 100,000 passengers daily. It had all the trappings of a successful light rail system from the day it opened, June 14, 1996. A starting principal for good light rail starter line is to take people to jobs, go from somewhere to somewhere, and operate on a realistic schedule. If there is one thing important in transit planning it is this -- start SOMEWHERE and end SOMEWHERE! The starter Red and Blue lines (20 miles in length at opening) in Dallas took people from park and ride lots to jobs downtown with a realistic schedule and span of service. A half a loaf is not good enough -- you can't take people to jobs from nowhere. And that is what the Kansas City streetcar does. Union Station is nowhere.

The public has never in recent times embraced light rail in Kansas City, where the foundation for what I think would have been an excellent light rail service is in their very lap: the old Country Club line corridor from Waldo and points south, Main Street north of the Plaza, past Crown Center and Union Station and through the downtown Business District. It could even be extended to North Kansas City or, in a dream world, to the airport. But, no! This has all been rejected many times over. Kansas City decided to embrace a short (2 mile line) which is no more than a gimmick that might, at best, attract decent loads during some special event. This is not the stuff of a successful light rail line or even a promising starter line and it is certainly not the kind of base that is worth $102 million as an investment in future expansion. Here is my prediction. The Kansas City Streetcar, as it is branded, will never grow into anything but a free tourist trolley, tootling slowly around in mixed traffic for two miles, usually empty. Probably, the main attraction of the trolley is that it is free. This means taxpayers are paying a lot -- $102 million -- for a joke. The Mayor and City Council -- not to mention KCATA -- should be downright embarrassed.
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Old 06-30-2016, 07:43 AM
 
1,298 posts, read 985,842 times
Reputation: 658
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mechthild View Post
Twenty years ago this month Dallas opened the first two segments of its light rail system, which is now the longest light rail system in the United States. The service was instantly popular and has been expanded incrementally many times with extensions and new routes. It now carries over 100,000 passengers daily. It had all the trappings of a successful light rail system from the day it opened, June 14, 1996. A starting principal for good light rail starter line is to take people to jobs, go from somewhere to somewhere, and operate on a realistic schedule. If there is one thing important in transit planning it is this -- start SOMEWHERE and end SOMEWHERE! The starter Red and Blue lines (20 miles in length at opening) in Dallas took people from park and ride lots to jobs downtown with a realistic schedule and span of service. A half a loaf is not good enough -- you can't take people to jobs from nowhere. And that is what the Kansas City streetcar does. Union Station is nowhere.

The public has never in recent times embraced light rail in Kansas City, where the foundation for what I think would have been an excellent light rail service is in their very lap: the old Country Club line corridor from Waldo and points south, Main Street north of the Plaza, past Crown Center and Union Station and through the downtown Business District. It could even be extended to North Kansas City or, in a dream world, to the airport. But, no! This has all been rejected many times over. Kansas City decided to embrace a short (2 mile line) which is no more than a gimmick that might, at best, attract decent loads during some special event. This is not the stuff of a successful light rail line or even a promising starter line and it is certainly not the kind of base that is worth $102 million as an investment in future expansion. Here is my prediction. The Kansas City Streetcar, as it is branded, will never grow into anything but a free tourist trolley, tootling slowly around in mixed traffic for two miles, usually empty. Probably, the main attraction of the trolley is that it is free. This means taxpayers are paying a lot -- $102 million -- for a joke. The Mayor and City Council -- not to mention KCATA -- should be downright embarrassed.
Very funny, Clay Chastain. We all see right through your "Meth Child" disguise. Better luck next time.
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Old 06-30-2016, 09:08 AM
 
80 posts, read 70,034 times
Reputation: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by rwiksell View Post
Very funny, Clay Chastain. We all see right through your "Meth Child" disguise. Better luck next time.
This ^
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Old 06-30-2016, 12:21 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,705 posts, read 18,525,549 times
Reputation: 5416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mechthild View Post
Twenty years ago this month Dallas opened the first two segments of its light rail system, which is now the longest light rail system in the United States. The service was instantly popular and has been expanded incrementally many times with extensions and new routes. It now carries over 100,000 passengers daily. It had all the trappings of a successful light rail system from the day it opened, June 14, 1996. A starting principal for good light rail starter line is to take people to jobs, go from somewhere to somewhere, and operate on a realistic schedule. If there is one thing important in transit planning it is this -- start SOMEWHERE and end SOMEWHERE! The starter Red and Blue lines (20 miles in length at opening) in Dallas took people from park and ride lots to jobs downtown with a realistic schedule and span of service. A half a loaf is not good enough -- you can't take people to jobs from nowhere. And that is what the Kansas City streetcar does. Union Station is nowhere.

The public has never in recent times embraced light rail in Kansas City, where the foundation for what I think would have been an excellent light rail service is in their very lap: the old Country Club line corridor from Waldo and points south, Main Street north of the Plaza, past Crown Center and Union Station and through the downtown Business District. It could even be extended to North Kansas City or, in a dream world, to the airport. But, no! This has all been rejected many times over. Kansas City decided to embrace a short (2 mile line) which is no more than a gimmick that might, at best, attract decent loads during some special event. This is not the stuff of a successful light rail line or even a promising starter line and it is certainly not the kind of base that is worth $102 million as an investment in future expansion. Here is my prediction. The Kansas City Streetcar, as it is branded, will never grow into anything but a free tourist trolley, tootling slowly around in mixed traffic for two miles, usually empty. Probably, the main attraction of the trolley is that it is free. This means taxpayers are paying a lot -- $102 million -- for a joke. The Mayor and City Council -- not to mention KCATA -- should be downright embarrassed.
I actually agree with most of what you say here. However, with or without light rail, the streetcar is a good fit for the urban core of KCMO.

It's too bad that KC is basically making the streetcar pretty much "it". The streetcar should be a component complementing a regional light rail system. But it's better than nothing.
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Old 06-30-2016, 12:51 PM
 
1,298 posts, read 985,842 times
Reputation: 658
Quote:
Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
I actually agree with most of what you say here. However, with or without light rail, the streetcar is a good fit for the urban core of KCMO.

It's too bad that KC is basically making the streetcar pretty much "it". The streetcar should be a component complementing a regional light rail system. But it's better than nothing.
I get why you mostly agree with this. But there's a big difference in Kansas City between what "should" be doable, and what actually is. That's why the streetcar is so instrumental. It bridges that gap.

And we can fantasize all we want about a light rail network from Waldo to the airport and points between, but you know better than anybody that the (lack of) density will not support it.
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Old 06-30-2016, 12:54 PM
 
1,298 posts, read 985,842 times
Reputation: 658
Can I just point out that this is MethChild's very first post on C-D, and his listed zip code is for middle-of-nowhere southern Pennsylvania?
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