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Old 02-11-2013, 11:55 AM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chirack View Post
While too many stops can be a problem too few are also not good. Not everyone who uses transit is young and in good health.



This adds costs and interchangability issuses(i.e Large bus breaks down and smaller bus can't handle the load). In general the fewer different types and models there are the easier it will be to repair(i.e. scavange parts from other bus), fewer different types of parts you need to stock, fewer training issuses. Also adds delay if drivers need to change busses.



Union busting in the name of being green....not a good idea.

Every potential solution has problems - if not, they would already have been universally implemented.

While those with the greatest walking issues may benefit from very frequent stops, this has to be weighed against the costs of not only providing very frequent stops, but of routing off the most direct route to get a stop at the front door of an apt building. In some cases paratransit may be a superior option.

Similarly I agree the interchangeabiliy issues can be real.

And Im generally pro union - but transit unions should get on board with improving the competitiveness of transit.
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Old 02-11-2013, 11:59 AM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Simply put, there's overwhelming empirical evidence that the coefficient of correlation of bus passengers to bus service is less than

you will note that my A - F list did NOT include simply increasing service frequency.

nor did it include anything that would make driving more costly or difficult (except, in a minor way, as a side effect of bus signal prioritization, etc) though some of those policies might be justified on their own
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Old 02-11-2013, 11:59 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati near
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brooklynborndad View Post
my goodness, go away and it gets completely off topic.

This thread was NOT intended to be about the costs and benefits of policies to induce more people to take transit.

Each such policy has its own costs and benefits, and needs to be evaluated differently - and likely will or will not make sense based on local conditions.

It was meant to clarify the misleading 'factoid' on higher average fuel burn per passenger compared to autos.

To clarify that the bus average is pulled down by the fact that most bus operations are structured to provide mobility to those who cannot drive, which is a policy goal orthogonal to reducing fuel burn.
On the other hand, the statistics could be very misleading in the opposite way as well. All the bus does is transport people, while the car or truck could be transporting hundreds or thousands of pounds of stuff along with the people. Comparing fuel use per passenger per mile doesn't address this. A better comparison would be to compare the same statistics for a bus vs. a small scooter: both means of transit that move people not cargo.
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:03 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Originally Posted by nybbler View Post
You have to decide on your conditions before you make your measurement. If you don't get the answer you like, adding in a bunch of stuff is just putting your thumb on your scale. After all, I could add in a bunch of stuff (perhaps much of it dubious) on the car side.

Fact remains, buses are less efficient than cars.

Im not sure what you mean by "stuff". Do you mean the improvements I suggested for buses?

Im not sure how as a matter of policy we get such improvements for cars - most decisions related to how people operate their cars are determined by individuals, who are not likely to modify their behavior in order to change a comparison like this.

There are a few policy levers to improve fuel efficiency of cars, but all of them have issues.

For example car fuel efficiency is as high as it in part due to CAFE standards - standards whose cost benefit is debatable, and whose further improvement will likely encounter resistance.

We could dramatically improve per passenger fuel efficiency for cars by heavily incenting car pooling - but most policies to do so would involve disincenting driving alone, and will be seen as punishment for driving, and will be resisted.
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:07 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Originally Posted by Chemistry_Guy View Post
On the other hand, the statistics could be very misleading in the opposite way as well. All the bus does is transport people, while the car or truck could be transporting hundreds or thousands of pounds of stuff along with the people. Comparing fuel use per passenger per mile doesn't address this. A better comparison would be to compare the same statistics for a bus vs. a small scooter: both means of transit that move people not cargo.
Im discussing passenger vehicles, not trucks carrying freight.

Its also doubtful that the auto fuel usage numbers are signficantly impacted by luggage, and anyway most local bus users are not carry large amounts of stuff with them anyway.

Comparing to scooters is meaningless, since very few people move via scooter.

Most people who choose between car and bus are carrying little other than themselves, and when they choose to drive, will drive a more or less average car.

In fact, I think, most bus passengers who switch to car will be driving alone, so the numbers above actually are biased in favor of cars. However I did not focus on that, since we are including captive bus riders, who may be more likely to be riding with children along.
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:37 PM
 
Location: Cincinnati near
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My point was that you are assuming that the role of the car is simply to transport people. Car occupancy statistics are influenced by the use of the vehicle. You gave some good reasons why bus occupancy rates are lower than what they could be (meeting the needs of poor, elderly, etc) so I gave a reason why car usage patterns result in a lower number of passengers than if the car was merely transportation. The mpg change due to cargo is not even something I was considering.
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:47 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Originally Posted by Chemistry_Guy View Post
My point was that you are assuming that the role of the car is simply to transport people. Car occupancy statistics are influenced by the use of the vehicle. You gave some good reasons why bus occupancy rates are lower than what they could be (meeting the needs of poor, elderly, etc) so I gave a reason why car usage patterns result in a lower number of passengers than if the car was merely transportation. The mpg change due to cargo is not even something I was considering.

I doubt that car trips with cargo/luggage have fewer passengers than those without. Given that families often go shopping together, and lone commuters carry little baggage, I think the direction is the opposite.

If you are thinking of freight vehicles, I am pretty sure my data source excludes heavy trucks. Im not sure if it excludes light trucks doing local business - but those often have two or more people in them (since they often transport work crews) so Im not sure even there if it goes in the direction you think it does.

But it would certainly be good to find a data source that excludes light trucks and vans being used commercially, I agree.
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:48 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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I mean do you REALLY think that average passengers per car in the US is significantly above 1.5? I found that figure somewhat surprisingly high.
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Old 02-11-2013, 04:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brooklynborndad View Post
I doubt that car trips with cargo/luggage have fewer passengers than those without. Given that families often go shopping together, and lone commuters carry little baggage, I think the direction is the opposite.
In general carring much more than a book bag on an bus is an hassle. The Car allows the wife for instance to drop of her Preschool Children at day care, go work a part time job and pick something up or run errands easily then pick the Children up. The bus sucks for running errands. It sucks when you need to carry cargo(and infants are closer to cargo in what must be transported with a baby. Granted I have seen women carry their infants on the bus and trust me it sucks.). There are also jobs where driving is a must real estate, salesmen, visting nurse.


It also sucks when the places you need to go are not along the same route(transfers and possible delays). Busses are also not good when people are not going to the same place. For instance where I live there is the Loop which is well served by transit but due to parking issuses(and cost) as well as traffic issuses people trade the car for the Bus/EL/Metra. However if you work elsewhere in the city then driving is much faster than the bus could ever hope to be since basically the car is non stop and puts you in front of and near your locations(Home, ect..).

IMHO the MPG argument is weak. Sure MPG is important but just as in a car it isn't the only consideration and not all busses use Desiel. I know locally a good percantage of the busses are Hybrids and many use Biodesiel.

If you want to lower emissions you would go for Trolley buses and Hybrids and work on using less carbon at the power plant.

If you want to decrease oil imports you go for all of the above as well as biodeisel and busses that run natural gas.
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