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Old 12-09-2010, 03:56 PM
 
Location: Sinking in the Great Salt Lake
12,301 posts, read 17,114,672 times
Reputation: 12892

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Quote:
Originally Posted by HereInMaine View Post
Like hot water, electricity and television, the automobile is not going anywhere and urban planning needs to reflect that, Public transportation needs to be cut and let the private sector take over in areas where it can be self supporting and put all that saved funding in improving roads and making city's more car friendly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVEZE2vM2oM

...That means the chances of gas staying very cheap are very slim indeed. Electric cars can fill some of the gap, at least fairly close range commuting, but the car is going to be a less important part of life sooner than most would like.

But we've invested way too much in a car dependant infrastructure to just plow it all up and rebuild, so adapting will be quite a challenge.
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Old 12-16-2010, 07:43 AM
 
Location: Duluth, MN
98 posts, read 179,300 times
Reputation: 68
Public transit needs to be cut? How selfish can one get? I have never had a license or a car (in my 28 years). This is my choice. Why? Because I can't afford it. With insurance, gas, repair costs, car costs, etc., it is simply too much to pay making a fast-food wage. And I shouldn't have to have a car. To dictate that one should live their life beholden to some private company (car companies) smacks of the coal mines of the 1800s and early 1900s. I'd rather not "owe my life to the company store".

Suburbs area horrible, IMO. They are full of folks that want to live "in the country" without actually living in the country. They're sterile and uniform. And the amount of emissions from the amount of cars is destroying our environment. How is it that Europe can be so much better off than us in terms of public transit? Their cities were designed and founded long before ours and, as such, have a high density and historical value. They wouldn't dream of bulldozing their treasured historic buildings in the urban core for a new six-lane superhighway. But in America, we do that. And I, a person who thinks of the car as a really, really effective marketing scheme, am forced to subsidize the roads. I would much rather take rail, but that isn't an option to me because people like you say we need to cut public transit.

Personally, I just think you're selfish. And a whole lot of others with you. For once, can people think about what's best for others than simply what's best for themselves?
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Old 12-16-2010, 09:59 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
29,872 posts, read 53,276,880 times
Reputation: 49108
Move to Europe, then, and stop making sweeping generalizations about suburbs. In either order.
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Old 12-16-2010, 05:54 PM
 
Location: Hudson Valley of New York
313 posts, read 740,941 times
Reputation: 221
We need a better rail system AND cars are here to stay. There is only so much public transportation can take a person or work. I'm fairly certain if you were able to afford a car you would get one.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:54 PM
 
Location: Albany, NY
724 posts, read 488,202 times
Reputation: 277
I can afford a car and I don't have one.
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Old 12-17-2010, 12:13 AM
 
8,280 posts, read 13,231,533 times
Reputation: 3908
I can afford a cheap car and have one, but I chalk up more mileage on transit and on foot in a typical year than I do in my car. Cars aren't going away anytime soon, and will be part of the transportation mix for a long time, but we don't have to make them the undisputed, unchallenged king of all civilization and cater to their every whim above all else anymore.
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Old 12-17-2010, 09:30 AM
 
7,000 posts, read 8,245,269 times
Reputation: 7698
Quote:
Originally Posted by saykinriseo View Post
Public transit needs to be cut? How selfish can one get? I have never had a license or a car (in my 28 years). This is my choice. Why? Because I can't afford it. With insurance, gas, repair costs, car costs, etc., it is simply too much to pay making a fast-food wage. And I shouldn't have to have a car. To dictate that one should live their life beholden to some private company (car companies) smacks of the coal mines of the 1800s and early 1900s. I'd rather not "owe my life to the company store".

Suburbs area horrible, IMO. They are full of folks that want to live "in the country" without actually living in the country. They're sterile and uniform. And the amount of emissions from the amount of cars is destroying our environment. How is it that Europe can be so much better off than us in terms of public transit? Their cities were designed and founded long before ours and, as such, have a high density and historical value. They wouldn't dream of bulldozing their treasured historic buildings in the urban core for a new six-lane superhighway. But in America, we do that. And I, a person who thinks of the car as a really, really effective marketing scheme, am forced to subsidize the roads. I would much rather take rail, but that isn't an option to me because people like you say we need to cut public transit.

Personally, I just think you're selfish. And a whole lot of others with you. For once, can people think about what's best for others than simply what's best for themselves?
Good post; a lot of truth here..
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Old 12-17-2010, 05:25 PM
 
Location: Sacramento, Placerville
2,173 posts, read 4,461,293 times
Reputation: 1676
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chango View Post

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVEZE2vM2oM

...That means the chances of gas staying very cheap are very slim indeed. Electric cars can fill some of the gap, at least fairly close range commuting, but the car is going to be a less important part of life sooner than most would like.

But we've invested way too much in a car dependant infrastructure to just plow it all up and rebuild, so adapting will be quite a challenge.
No, the car isn't going anywhere. Gas will be more expensive, but I don't think it will be prohibitively expensive. I think the cost will persuade people to use public transportation within urban areas.

Rebuilding isn't necessary. Several cities are using abandoned railroads and medians for electric rail systems. Most large cities are loaded with abandoned railroad right-of-ways where trolleys would be the most effective. Quite often they lead out to suburban communities that build up around railroad yards and stations. The biggest obstacle is people who don't want it, uncooperative neighbouring communities, and funding.

It will be impossible to make a perfect transit system since it really isn't possible to make one convenient enough for everyone to use, thus my belief that cars are here to stay. However, it should be easy enough to get a lot of people to use it for commuting around congested urban areas and reduce the amount of mileage driven.
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Old 12-26-2010, 07:12 AM
 
11,041 posts, read 12,973,087 times
Reputation: 6362
Sounds like you are stuck in a really bad traffic jam! Seriously, though, most transit riders do own vehicles, many driving to the station (although the station wagon is now obsolete) as they do not live within walking distance. I know a few who drive to the station near their home, ride the train to another, then drive another they have stationed at that point to the office. Indeed, parking space is a limiting factor for rail ridership. But rail funding needs to be expanded, not cut. The cost of expanding highways in major urban areas has gotten excessive, much more than establishing or expanding rail to handle the same number of passengers. Granted, a new rail line will attract a number of riders who otherwise would not make the trip, but there is still a gain in capacity. I will not guess what fuel will power new vehicles, that is a subject for another forum.

Last edited by pvande55; 12-26-2010 at 07:13 AM.. Reason: grammatical agreement
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Old 12-26-2010, 02:07 PM
Status: "On Break" (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
81,413 posts, read 91,910,312 times
Reputation: 28071
Quote:
Originally Posted by verybadgnome View Post
I don't think that is the goal but the middle ground is where a lot of planners are looking. Going from a two car to a one car family in a city with the appropriate infrastructure is a step in the right direction. That suburbanites spend 24% of their income on transportation is a problem:
(The Next Real Estate Boom - Patrick C. Doherty and Christopher B. Leinberger)
That article is very long, and I didn't find the quote about suburbanites spending 24% of their income on transportation. However, in the past I have found such numbers to be wildly inflated b/c of assumptions about driving expensive late-model cars, financing the purchase of cars with loan-shark rates, etc. One can pay cash for a car and keep it for 10+ years, as we have for our last several vehicles, and the cost per mile driven goes down dramatically.
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