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 01-26-2013, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,061 posts, read 16,074,613 times
Reputation: 12636

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by HandsUpThumbsDown View Post
What happened, did a bus cut you off today or something? Your comment is remarkably rude. It adds nothing to your point, which is valid.

From your comments I think buses are operated extremely inefficiently in your area.

Energy efficiency in transportation - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A diesel bus commuter service in Santa Barbara, California, USA, found average diesel bus efficiency of 6.0 mpg-US (39 L/100 km; 7.2 mpg-imp) (using MCI 102DL3 buses). With all 55 seats filled this equates to 330 passenger-mpg, with 70% filled the efficiency would be 231 passenger-mpg.[56] At the typical average passenger load of 9 people, the efficiency is only 54 passenger-mpg and could be half of this figure when many stops are made in urban routes.

So let's say for discussion's sake, as a bottom figure (representing a rather inefficient route) 27 passenger-mpg. Honda Civic city MPG is 28. So while a single-occupant car is not vastly less efficient than an under-utilized bus, it is not hilarious fantasy land.
Except the average Civic has 1.5 passengers, so it's getting 42 ppmpg. That's nearly double the mpg of a typical city bus per your numbers. Not a vastly inefficient bus. A typical bus. Sorry. I just call it like it is, if you bought into the stupid numbers from transit zealots and that offends you, that's really your issue. It's actually not as bad as your numbers suggest, however, because most places are using the new hybrid-diesels which get around 4 mpg in the city and not 3.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-26-2013, 02:47 PM
 
Location: North Baltimore ----> Seattle
6,473 posts, read 11,099,778 times
Reputation: 3117
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Except the average Civic has 1.5 passengers, so it's getting 42 mpg. That's nearly double the mpg of a typical bus. Not a vastly inefficient bus. A typical bus. Sorry. I just call it like it is, if you bought into the stupid numbers from transit zealots and that offends you, that's really your issue.
It's a very good point.

You are a gentleman and a scholar. I sure wish I could be like you when I grow up, Malloric. Ever so gracious!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-26-2013, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,061 posts, read 16,074,613 times
Reputation: 12636
That gave me a chuckle =D
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-26-2013, 03:35 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,992 posts, read 102,568,112 times
Reputation: 33059
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
You saw people do that at $4 gas, it just wasn't this radical change some expected. To me it's absurd that there's some level where I suddenly adjust my behavior whereas at a cent or five cents or even a dollar less I just go along blithely. Gas going from $4-5 gallon... well again, more of the same. Instead of buying a $35,000 Explorer (old SUV-style) that gets 16 mpg you buy a $35,000 Explorer (new Crossover) that gets about 21 mpg. Old v8 4x4 driven 15,000 a year @4/gallon = $3,750 in gas. New crossover that gets 21 mpg driven 15,000 a year @5/gallon = $3,572. Cool. Gas just went up a dollar a gallon and with no other change than switching to Crossover look-a-like SUV you've saved money from when it was $4 gallon. No need for drastic measures such as switching to hybrids, changing neighborhoods, or riding buses to more than off-set gas going from $4 to $5 a gallon.
Hybrids are becoming more mainstream these days. We just bought one (Kia Optima), to replace a car we gave to our daughter. It didn't cost more than any other car of its size. I do think it's nuts to buy a new car if you don't need one, period, to pay less for gas. I think changing neighborhoods is insane unless there are EXTREMELY extenuating circumstances, such as a permanent job relocation.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-26-2013, 03:37 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,061 posts, read 16,074,613 times
Reputation: 12636
Quote:
Originally Posted by memph View Post
I think park and ride transit can work quite well at low densities. Toronto's commuter train network has the highest farebox recovery of any transit system in North America as far as I know, and it's main role is to connect outer suburbs to downtown. The busiest lines are also the ones that serve the wealthiest and least dense suburbs. I think the main thing you need for park and ride transit to be effective is a big downtown that's inconvenient to drive to, whether it's because of high parking costs or congestion.
Until you run out of parking lot. About two or three years ago, you used to still be able to take BART into San Francisco from the suburbs. Now it fills up by 7. The other problem is that parking lots don't jibe well with people preconceived notions of what TOD is.

This is TOD:
https://maps.google.com/maps?q=BART+...anton,+CA&z=18

This is also TOD:
https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Pleas...llage,+CA&z=18

There's some conflict there. While the first works great for park and ride, it does basically preclude the second. As the transit system gets more used, transit centers have a tendency to turn into mini-downtowns in their own right, and when that happens, no more parking.

Same thing in Seattle. When I first moved up there, I was living with family friends in Marysville, which is a good ways north of Seattle. Local bus system is pretty bad, so it would have been great, in theory, to drive to the park-n-ride and then take the express bus into downtown. That'd avoid the $20/day to park downtown, get cars off the extremely crowded freeway going into Seattle. Problem? No parking. In very low dense areas, I could see it working better as there'd be less demand to develop something other than parking lots around the park-n-ride areas. In more average densisty suburbs, the park-n-ride parking lot has to deal with the fact that shopping centers, business parks, and what have you also value being close to the freeway. With rail there's even more pressure to use the land for something else. The Beltway, Toronto, Hong Kong, and I'm sure many others are good examples of that.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-26-2013, 05:00 PM
 
12,296 posts, read 15,190,901 times
Reputation: 8108
Several thoughts. First in many places there are toll roads. Drivers on them further subsidize the freeways. Another point: many roads are only at or above capacity four hours a day. In many cases it costs less to build a rail line that can handle that traffic. Gasoline taxes have barely budged in the last 20 years but there is little political support for raising them.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2013, 09:35 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
45,987 posts, read 41,947,535 times
Reputation: 14804
Quote:
Originally Posted by HandsUpThumbsDown View Post
Your point is made, but 40 people in one vehicle can be driven for far less fuel per person than one person in a honda civic. To equate the consumption of bus vs. single occupant cars is like saying, "hey tankless water heaters use energy too so they're the same as a 5000 gallon model!"
This pdf has seat occupancy for rapid transit systems:

http://www.railvolution.org/rv2008_pdfs/rv2008_230e.pdf

The highest is NYC at 58%. I'm guessing low seat occupancy at the beginning at ends of lines, especially off hours drag the numbers down. This chart has buses more (and rail much more) efficient than cars because:

1) The average work trip has 1.14 people / car not 1.5
2) The average American car does not have the fuel efficiency of a Honda Civic, it is 20.3 mpg

If environment efficiency is the priority, the simplest solution would be to encourage more fuel efficient cars, for example an increase in gas tax and a reduction of payroll tax at the same time might be a fair solution. Mass transit can help in a few spots in places where the volume of ridership is high enough (and most of those probably have a decent amount of mass transit already). Otherwise, mass transit can only be justified for other reasons. Rail is even better than buses, but of course only when if you can fill up the seats!

As the fuel efficiency of cars can be greatly improved, so can the fuel efficiency of mass transit vehicles. But most transit agencies car more about cheap vehicles than saving fuel. A lot of buses are rather old and probably fuel guzzling.

Also, sometimes posters assume most transit = buses. Not exactly true; just over half of the country's transit ridership is on buses, the rest rail.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2013, 02:04 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,061 posts, read 16,074,613 times
Reputation: 12636
Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
If environment efficiency is the priority, the simplest solution would be to encourage more fuel efficient cars, for example an increase in gas tax and a reduction of payroll tax at the same time might be a fair solution. Mass transit can help in a few spots in places where the volume of ridership is high enough (and most of those probably have a decent amount of mass transit already). Otherwise, mass transit can only be justified for other reasons. Rail is even better than buses, but of course only when if you can fill up the seats!

As the fuel efficiency of cars can be greatly improved, so can the fuel efficiency of mass transit vehicles. But most transit agencies car more about cheap vehicles than saving fuel. A lot of buses are rather old and probably fuel guzzling.

Also, sometimes posters assume most transit = buses. Not exactly true; just over half of the country's transit ridership is on buses, the rest rail.
True. The issue with reducing income taxes (I assume you mean that and not payroll) and increasing gas taxes is it gets rid of a wealth-transfer mechanism. Someone making $200,000 a year would see a big decrease in income taxes that would far off set an extra $500 or $1000 in gas taxes. At the same time, it's very hard to decrease the zero (or often negative with EITC) income taxes someone making $20,000 a year is paying. Maybe they consume as much as the person making $200,000 and only see $300-600 more in gas taxes. While I agree it'd be a more efficient system, the Democrats are generally opposed to uniformly applied taxes as they are regressive. Republicans are opposed to gas taxes because... well, I honestly don't know why. Partly I'm sure it has to do with gas taxes being raided to pay for other programs, but I think a lot of it just has to do with that being the status quo.

And not to get all nitpicky, but you just said most transit ridership is by bus. Moreover, if you look at what people are exposed to, it really is overwhelmingly bus transit. Excluding MTA-served areas, which is less than 10% of the country by population, and rail's ridership as a percentage just falls off a cliff. For the other 90% of Americans, transit really is overwhelmingly by bus.

Last edited by Malloric; 01-27-2013 at 02:16 PM..
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