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 02-17-2013, 06:42 PM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 873,136 times
Reputation: 217

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by goofy328 View Post
Everyone wants light rail, but is it really a game changer, or just another option? Older cities like Cleveland arguably have some form of it. Don't forget Detroit's "People Mover", but it seems like only cities with subways have true options. If that is true, reasons could be varied.
People Mover failed because:

+ It went from nowhere to nowhere
+ It was too short, and it was quicker to walk the distance, rather than rely on the train

The should rename it: "Cash Drainer"

This is what happen when you put "Car people" in charge of designing a system to remove the need for cars
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-17-2013, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Norfolk, VA
6,383 posts, read 6,005,983 times
Reputation: 3558
As far as Whitey, that is a purely socio-economic issue. I haven't been to a city where I didn't see Whites riding the bus. The question, is WHICH Whites ride the bus, and my general consensus, is that they're either cheap and don't want to pay for gas, don't want to deal with the traffic in some areas, or honestly cannot afford any other mode of transportation. Also, as suggested before, it takes a thick skin and an indifference to working poor culture that suburban Whites do not have, which is why you get this NIMBY attitude when it comes to running buses through suburban areas, or, if the bus is ran through there it doesn't run as often or as frequently. Forget about the bus actually going up into a purely residential area; suburbanites are forced to walk out to the main thoroughfare and dodge 8 lanes of traffic to get to their bus.

As outdated as the bus is, it is configurable. This isn't infrastructure that needs to be built. Most cities with these starter 10K or less lines; that is all those cities can afford. Some of the cities never get past 10K, or never get past a single line. I fear that is what will be the case in Hampton Roads for the foreseeable future.

Light-rail is very sexy for urban planners these days, and a hit with those that can benefit from it, as well as source of angst for those that do not want to pay for it through increased taxes.

Car culture could be another thing with the bus. Places defined through sprawl, like much of Virginia, but also true to a large extent in Ohio where the overwhelming majority of a metro area is suburbia; people prefer to get behind the wheel, even if they do have to sit in traffic for an hour or more. You can get a piece of junk for a few hundred bucks and the time you waste waiting on the bus in those places, the money spent on insurance, gas, repairs, upkeep, maintenance of an automobile etc. it is a good investment when it takes three hours to get to the other side of the metro on the bus.

Ideally, light rail is supposed to alleviate this, but without more lines it is never a practical solution. I would like to see more light rail, but logistics such as where to build it, without using eminent domain to tear down housing and businesses, and the cost, seem to always get in the way.

Last edited by goofy328; 02-17-2013 at 06:58 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 06:49 PM
 
Location: Norfolk, VA
6,383 posts, read 6,005,983 times
Reputation: 3558
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geologic View Post
People Mover failed because:

+ It went from nowhere to nowhere
+ It was too short, and it was quicker to walk the distance, rather than rely on the train

The should rename it: "Cash Drainer"

This is what happen when you put "Car people" in charge of designing a system to remove the need for cars
Good point. I also thought that Detroit was in better economic shape when it was built and had the cash to build out more than what they did at that time, or I might be mistaken.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 873,136 times
Reputation: 217
Quote:
Originally Posted by goofy328 View Post
Good point. I also thought that Detroit was in better economic shape when it was built and had the cash to build out more than what they did at that time, or I might be mistaken.
It was in better shape then.
But that was no excuse for wasting money.
No wonder it is bankrupt.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 07:01 PM
 
Location: Michigan
4,571 posts, read 7,035,324 times
Reputation: 3599
Quote:
Originally Posted by goofy328 View Post
Good point. I also thought that Detroit was in better economic shape when it was built and had the cash to build out more than what they did at that time, or I might be mistaken.
The majority of the DPM was federally funded. Then costs kept going up and by then no one wanted to be downtown anyway so they just left it as the loop.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 07:01 PM
 
Location: Norfolk, VA
6,383 posts, read 6,005,983 times
Reputation: 3558
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geologic View Post
It was in better shape then.
But that was no excuse for wasting money.
No wonder it is bankrupt.
They should have done it right or not do it at all?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 07:14 PM
 
Location: Michigan
4,571 posts, read 7,035,324 times
Reputation: 3599
Actually, pardon me, it was built in the 80s. But yea by then the city's population had already shrunk enough that they wouldn't have had enough funds to fully build it anyway without federal help. And from what I hear, I think the-then president wanted to put funding into particle accelerators so people mover funding (Miami's PM system was built around the same time with similar funding) was drawn down to pay for some science projects. Nonetheless, DPM is what it is and hopefully it'll either be torn down and better utilized in the future will Detroit's new light rail network.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 07:19 PM
 
507 posts, read 659,449 times
Reputation: 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Houston's light rail does well. Houston's light rail has the 2nd highest ridership per mile of any light rail in the country:

List of United States light rail systems by ridership - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Of course, it's a short thing covered areas adjacent to downtown so not that surprising but still not bad for what was constructed.
I know you already mentioned it in your post but I've seen that thrown out there by Houston boosters all the time, but honestly if they ever do expand that system it will drop to DART numbers lets not kid ourselves
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 07:22 PM
 
Location: Coos Bay, Oregon
7,142 posts, read 8,882,400 times
Reputation: 7732
Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
It's faster and more reliable for longer distances than bus, but unless the city is dense enough it can't cover all but a few corridors. If there are specific busy corridors that helps a lot. As for "true options", most American cities with only light rail don't get all that high ridership, but outside the US light rail only system transport relatively high volumes. Calgary has only light rail with a weekday ridership of 250,000 / day and a metro population of 1.1 million. Nantes, France has an urban area population of 580,000 and 266,000 daily riders on its light rail system, with no subways.
Don't forget Monterrey, Mexico with 419,000 daily riders and a population of 1.1 million.

I disagree that light rail is faster and more reliable for longer distances than bus. I think light rail is terrible for longer distances. I often drive on a freeway parallel to a light rail line. Traveling at the speed limit 65 mph, I fly right past the light rail trains doing 55 mph. An express bus could easily be traveling the same speed I am. In most cases you will find that light rail is usually slower then express busses that it replaces.

The only thing light rail has going for it is, that people like trains. They don't like busses.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-17-2013, 07:23 PM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 873,136 times
Reputation: 217
Quote:
Originally Posted by animatedmartian View Post
The majority of the DPM was federally funded. Then costs kept going up and by then no one wanted to be downtown anyway so they just left it as the loop.
Right.
So it seems like the "reason" to build it was : The jobs created during its construction, since "someone else is paying for it."
What a great iconic example of what NOT to do.
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