U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 01-04-2013, 12:52 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,078 posts, read 102,800,958 times
Reputation: 33142

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by HandsUpThumbsDown View Post
Yes, and while there is a bit of truth to it, it's not a compelling argument on its own.

You might enjoy this post: Human Transit: dissent of the week: my alleged "bias" against rail
Thanks. That was an interesting article.

Since we're sharing articles, here's one from me:

http://www.npr.org/2013/01/02/168485...ental-business

Last edited by Katarina Witt; 01-04-2013 at 01:01 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-04-2013, 01:11 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
8,820 posts, read 10,736,555 times
Reputation: 2529
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlite View Post
In my experience, it's the streetcar advocates who dismiss a whole (family of) modes, the bus. They say things like "nobody will ride the bus," "nobody wants to ride the bus", "middle class people won't ride the bus" and yes, "White people won't ride the bus." Oh, and, nobody will do development connected to a bus line. I'm not attributing any of these attitudes to you, but they do get said all the time.

the question of development is a real one, as is bus stigma on the part of many (but not all) middle class whites.

As for things like "nobody rides the bus" I presume in this instance street car advocates means naive internet posters, not actual urban planners or transit professionals.

There are clueless amateur advocates for just about anything.

I am more interested in the serious debate among professionals (and well informed amateurs). None of them that I know of think streetcars should substitute for buses on every single corridor. Im pretty sure the Portland govt did not try to do that, and I know the pro street car local DOTS where I live (DC and Arlington) are also investing in improving bus lines as well.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-04-2013, 11:49 PM
 
1,015 posts, read 1,545,493 times
Reputation: 746
Quote:
Originally Posted by brooklynborndad View Post
the question of development is a real one, as is bus stigma on the part of many (but not all) middle class whites.

As for things like "nobody rides the bus" I presume in this instance street car advocates means naive internet posters, not actual urban planners or transit professionals.

There are clueless amateur advocates for just about anything.

I am more interested in the serious debate among professionals (and well informed amateurs). None of them that I know of think streetcars should substitute for buses on every single corridor. Im pretty sure the Portland govt did not try to do that, and I know the pro street car local DOTS where I live (DC and Arlington) are also investing in improving bus lines as well.
Middle class people seem plenty willing to ride express buses. It's a matter of service quality, delivering a good product to passengers.

You're partly right, BB. The professionals don't say "no one will ride the bus" they say things more like we can increase ridership much more on streetcars than buses,. They make proposals, as Jarrett Walker has said, for streetcars that run a lot more frequently than buses, have a longer span of service and have all new facilities. They then compare them to unimproved buses--no more frequent, no stop improvements, shorter hours--and voila the streetcar does better. What a revelation.

I've encountered professionals whose work is going around to cities selling them on streetcars. I've also seen a lot of thoughtless enthusiasm on the part of city government economic development professionals. I've literally heard these people--paid city staff--scream at questioners that the streetcar worked in Portland and it's going to work here, stop being a negativist.

Not everybody is like this, of course, but I am aware of at least one city where this constellation of attitudes is driving the city towards a streetcar as its primary economic development strategy and its principal new transit improvement. Maybe that city is unique, but from the tenor of debate around the country that I read about, I doubt it.

Transit agencies are often a bit more realistic, but most of the streetcar projects have been initiated outside of transit agencies. The transit agency is usually brought in to run the line, but it may or may not be seriously involved in the planning. In LA, Metro conducted the alternatives analysis for the proposed streetcar, so presumably there's some integration with broader transit planning, though some have questioned that. Seattle did a well thought out municipal transit plan which identified both the level of service and the mode for all of the city's major corridors. Portland has articulated a comprehensive plan at a regional level. But otherwise the streetcars seem to be very much ad hoc propositions, not part of a thorough plan. I've seen streetcar studies--by professional consultants-- that barely make mention of the existing transit network, especially the bus transit network.

Again, I would partly agree with you, usually the proposal isn't to replace all buses with streetcars. The problem is that one streetcar line, plopped on top of the key bus transit spine, can cause a lot of problems. There's the literal physical problem of places for both buses and streetcars to operate. Yes, they both do it on Market St. in San Francisco, which is a massively wide street. You then have the issue of disrupting the network of bus routes. You can get a streetcar that's just long enough to drain off passengers from the bus, but not long enough to allow the bus agency to delete routes or segments.

At the end of all this I ask was it worth it, what was gained? Was the gain worth the expense and disruption? Was this the best way to invest scarce transit dollars? Perhaps so in some cases, but I don't think it's an automatic yes.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-08-2013, 11:07 PM
 
Location: In the heights
22,267 posts, read 23,769,327 times
Reputation: 11714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
That is the mantra of many light-rail advocates as well.
In practice, how false is that? How much harder is it to discontinue a fixed-rail line than it is to discontinue a half-hearted BRT?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-09-2013, 09:12 AM
 
Location: East of the Sun, West of the Moon
15,569 posts, read 17,804,904 times
Reputation: 31001
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIMBAM View Post
Right, because no families with little children, elderly or even people with sprained ankles need to get around the city, everyone's a fit 20 year old living in a perfect climate . What a silly comment, time is money and people with busy lives want to get to where they're going as easily as is viable.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
The above is a HUGE problem on this forum. There are many 20-30 something males posting here, who can't put themselves into someone else's shoes regarding mobility, safety, etc.
Do believe it is an accident of evolution that 20-30 somethings are able to walk for 15 straight minutes without stopping?

Humans are designed, above all else, to walk great distances, daily. Lions have teeth, fish have fins, cows have stomachs, humans walk.

Little children can be carried or pushed in a stroller. That said, a five year old can easily hike 3 or 4 miles in rough natural terrain, then run around and play for hours in the woods. One or two miles on pavement is well within the capabilities of a child. The elderly, provided they haven't damaged their bodies with a lifetime of sitting on their butts can walk a dozen miles a day.

Of course there are people with serious mobility problems. I myself suffered from plantar faciitis for 6 months once, and I have pulled a muscle in my back that limited my mobility for at least a week. I wasn't walking anywhere. So I understand that people with chronic physical limitations need transportation options. Thankfully there are cars and buses and bicycles, etc.

What we don't need are solutions for potentially healthy, but lazy people who don't want to walk for 15-30 minutes and think that such a distance is a punishing torture. No wonder the state of health in our country is pathetic.

That said, if the cities in states that recently legalized recreational use of marijuana installed gondolas, they would have a winner.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-09-2013, 09:44 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

Over $104,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum and additional contests are planned
 
Location: Long Island / NYC
45,992 posts, read 42,110,497 times
Reputation: 14811
Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQConvict View Post
The elderly, provided they haven't damaged their bodies with a lifetime of sitting on their butts can walk a dozen miles a day.
I saw two elderly women (early 70s? didn't look that old) that were doing a 10 mile hike on a trail called "Dread and Terror" not steep but rough. Their car had a handicapped sticker.

Quote:
That said, if the cities in states that recently legalized recreational use of marijuana installed gondolas, they would have a winner.
LOL. If only Oregon had legalized marijuana. Portland already has a gondola. The only other one in North America (besides ski / mountains ones) is the Roosevelt Island one in NYC. But Vancouver has proposed one.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-09-2013, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,094 posts, read 16,138,912 times
Reputation: 12696
Quote:
Originally Posted by OyCrumbler View Post
In practice, how false is that? How much harder is it to discontinue a fixed-rail line than it is to discontinue a half-hearted BRT?
Not much harder, which is why streetcars are very rare today when they were quite common a hundred years ago.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-09-2013, 03:49 PM
 
2,553 posts, read 2,010,353 times
Reputation: 1349
Quote:
Originally Posted by OyCrumbler View Post
The gondola is a novel idea, but any sort of disruptions in service would be terrifying for the passengers trapped in there. For Austin specifically, the area is pretty flat and the streets aren't very narrow so I don't quite see the benefits over BRT.
And that's really the core of the argument. Sure, [insert transit mode here] is neat, but does it make sense in context? It doesn't really matter what the transit mode is, because the question is universal. Unfortunately, this question is often ignored (or asked too broadly to have any meaning) by policymakers who are more keen on reaching some idolized goal rather than solving the given problem.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-12-2013, 09:47 PM
 
9,524 posts, read 14,885,690 times
Reputation: 9769
Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQConvict View Post
Humans are designed, above all else, to walk great distances, daily. Lions have teeth, fish have fins, cows have stomachs, humans walk.
And that's why we developed intelligence; because our great strength was a really poor one.

New Yorkers walk 3.4 mph. You don't get very far at 3.4mph, even if you can do it continuously (which you can't, because there are obstacles). Walking's a terrible way to get around.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-13-2013, 07:46 AM
 
Location: North Baltimore ----> Seattle
6,473 posts, read 11,122,814 times
Reputation: 3118
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post
And that's really the core of the argument. Sure, [insert transit mode here] is neat, but does it make sense in context? It doesn't really matter what the transit mode is, because the question is universal. Unfortunately, this question is often ignored (or asked too broadly to have any meaning) by policymakers who are more keen on reaching some idolized goal rather than solving the given problem.
^

This
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top