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Old 02-21-2014, 08:15 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 20 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,008 posts, read 102,606,536 times
Reputation: 33064

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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
Basically we will continue to see cities in blue states pass by cities in red states because of these Republican governors playing politics with their states.
Like the Dems don't play politics. They're the ones that got CO into this mess over the construction of the BRT.
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Old 02-21-2014, 08:49 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,528,523 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Like the Dems don't play politics. They're the ones that got CO into this mess over the construction of the BRT.
What mess is that? I don't pay attention to Colorado's daily politics or transportation projects.
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Old 02-21-2014, 09:20 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 20 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,008 posts, read 102,606,536 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
What mess is that? I don't pay attention to Colorado's daily politics or transportation projects.
I've posted several links on here, and discussed it quite a few times. CDOT/RTD are building some HOV lanes on US Highway 36. They've contracted with some private company (that I think a poster on here works for) to do a private/public partnership. There have been several contentious meetings in the past couple of weeks, allegations of malfeasance, yada, yada. Do a search if you're interested.
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Old 02-21-2014, 09:29 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,990 posts, read 41,979,923 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Cleveland to Cincinnasti is 250 miles. How much was the project supposed to cost? Unless it was a heavy rail system running on existing tracks with very few train stations (basically Amtrak, which probably already exists) $400 million wouldn't get very far. Average light rail construction is around $50 million per mile. $250 million wouldn't even cover 5% of that.

http://www.tmacog.org/Transportation...11/Ohio_3C.pdf
Ah found it, yup freight rail line. There's not Amtrak service already? Interesting.
Nope, Ohio has no Amtrak other middle of the night long-distance trains from Chicago to the east coast.
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Old 02-21-2014, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,528,523 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
I've posted several links on here, and discussed it quite a few times. CDOT/RTD are building some HOV lanes on US Highway 36. They've contracted with some private company (that I think a poster on here works for) to do a private/public partnership. There have been several contentious meetings in the past couple of weeks, allegations of malfeasance, yada, yada. Do a search if you're interested.
HOV lanes are primarily for cars, though buses get to use them as well. Though I do agree that they tend to be a waste of money when that money could be spent on other forms of transportation. Sorry if me asking you what you were referring to bothered you in any way.
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Old 02-21-2014, 02:56 PM
 
8,287 posts, read 11,836,190 times
Reputation: 4948
Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
This article on Streetsblog is super interesting.

Why Is It Still So Hard to Find Out How States Are Spending Transpo Money? | Streetsblog USA

Looking at both transparency of data on spend on transportation projects. And an overall count on how money is being spent by state.

Totally enlightening, and it is terrible how in general government isn't mandated to be open about how money is spent.

Perhaps if things were more open, we wouldn't have disasters like what happened in Miami:Miami-Dade: The brain drain and transit - Other Views - MiamiHerald.com
(In a nutshell, voters approved a 1/2 cent tax to fund transit, and the money has been used for highways mostly, and not much on transit.)

Full report by state on spend:
http://www.advocacyadvance.org/docs/..._AllStates.pdf
As a resident of Miami-Dade county and as one who voted for the half penny sales tax in 2002 I can tell you that the Miami Herald's report is erroneous which is typical of their sloppy reporting. When the sales tax was passed it was solely to expand Metrorail and to give some of that tax money to the other 35 municipalities in the county to expand or start their own bus services.

What wasn't explained is that Miami-Dade Transit was running a huge defecit trying to maintain buses & trains on a shoe string budget before the sales tax passed for years. In order to qualify for Federal transit money (they pay 50% share for new projects) to extend a heavy rail system the FEDS require that the transit agency being "solvent" which in this case Miami-Dade transit wasn't.

Some of the funds that were set for expansion were diverted in order to bring the transit agency's finances into good standing. In that time period a 3.2 mile extension of Metrorail was built straight to Miami Int'l. Airport connecting a vital link as well as buying new buses. The transit agency with this tax money also ordered a complete replacement of it's 30 year old 186 cars in it's Metrorail fleet which they paid $313 million dollars from this fund.

The article goes to say something about "Lexus Lanes" and how the transit agency is building "highway lanes"! That is a falsehood because there is another agency called MDX (Miami-Dade Expressway Authority)
which is fully in charge of adding "Lexus lanes, tolls, and to maintain roads! That is there sole job.
Miami Dade Transit has no authority over roads except for the 20 mile "South Dade Busway" which was a former railroad Right of Way bought by the agency back in the 1990's.

By the way the article you used as referenced is specific to a local transit agency not a state one.
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Old 02-21-2014, 05:04 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,674,744 times
Reputation: 26666
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
HOV lanes are primarily for cars, though buses get to use them as well. Though I do agree that they tend to be a waste of money when that money could be spent on other forms of transportation. Sorry if me asking you what you were referring to bothered you in any way.
Here is a local (for me) study on how reallocating a normal lane into an HOV or HOT lane would reduce congestion.

Innovation required to curb congestion on Highway 101 in San Mateo County | TransForm

I don't necessarily think it is cost effective to add a lane to a freeway, but I wouldn't say HOV lanes are a waste. It depends on how much you are spending, now if it costs $200M, and it'll take $200M to add BRT, I might pick BRT. But if it coasts $30M, then it is likely worth it.
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Old 02-21-2014, 05:08 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,674,744 times
Reputation: 26666
Quote:
Originally Posted by MiamiRob View Post
As a resident of Miami-Dade county and as one who voted for the half penny sales tax in 2002 I can tell you that the Miami Herald's report is erroneous which is typical of their sloppy reporting. When the sales tax was passed it was solely to expand Metrorail and to give some of that tax money to the other 35 municipalities in the county to expand or start their own bus services.

What wasn't explained is that Miami-Dade Transit was running a huge defecit trying to maintain buses & trains on a shoe string budget before the sales tax passed for years. In order to qualify for Federal transit money (they pay 50% share for new projects) to extend a heavy rail system the FEDS require that the transit agency being "solvent" which in this case Miami-Dade transit wasn't.

Some of the funds that were set for expansion were diverted in order to bring the transit agency's finances into good standing. In that time period a 3.2 mile extension of Metrorail was built straight to Miami Int'l. Airport connecting a vital link as well as buying new buses. The transit agency with this tax money also ordered a complete replacement of it's 30 year old 186 cars in it's Metrorail fleet which they paid $313 million dollars from this fund.

The article goes to say something about "Lexus Lanes" and how the transit agency is building "highway lanes"! That is a falsehood because there is another agency called MDX (Miami-Dade Expressway Authority)
which is fully in charge of adding "Lexus lanes, tolls, and to maintain roads! That is there sole job.
Miami Dade Transit has no authority over roads except for the 20 mile "South Dade Busway" which was a former railroad Right of Way bought by the agency back in the 1990's.

By the way the article you used as referenced is specific to a local transit agency not a state one.
I mixed two topics in my thread,

1. How is your state spending the money
2. Are transportation project spends transparent

As for Miami, in my book, if the Sales Tax was pitched as something for transit, and it was used for operating expenses and capital expenses, then it is still in line with the intent of the tax.

If the money is spent on highway expansion or "lexus lanes" it really isn't in line with the intent. But the larger issue is, why is it so difficult to see how transportations dollars are being spent. Why isn't everyone responsible for accounting how these huge dollar amounts are spent. We aren't talking about a $1000 project here. It is hundreds of millions or even billions, I should have access to the full details if I want them.
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Old 02-21-2014, 06:22 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 20 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,008 posts, read 102,606,536 times
Reputation: 33064
Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
Here is a local (for me) study on how reallocating a normal lane into an HOV or HOT lane would reduce congestion.

Innovation required to curb congestion on Highway 101 in San Mateo County | TransForm

I don't necessarily think it is cost effective to add a lane to a freeway, but I wouldn't say HOV lanes are a waste. It depends on how much you are spending, now if it costs $200M, and it'll take $200M to add BRT, I might pick BRT. But if it coasts $30M, then it is likely worth it.
Well, these bozos (CDOT/RTD/Plenary) are making it "HOV3" or pay a toll (to Plenary) to use said lane. Meaning, most of the carpools now extant will split up b/c it's much harder to do three than two. We didn't vote for this.

U.S. 36's new HOV lanes to require carpoolers carry 2 passengers, not just 1 - Boulder Daily Camera
Protesters tossed from U.S. 36 contract hearing before panel OKs pact - Boulder Daily Camera
Harsh words for CDOT at public meeting on 50-year U.S. 36 contract - Boulder Daily Camera
CDOT beaten up in Round 2 of U.S. 36 public meetings - Boulder Daily Camera
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Old 02-21-2014, 06:45 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,674,744 times
Reputation: 26666
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
The Bay Area is really weird. The carpool lanes are all over the map. The very congested routes require 3 people. But there are some that require two people.

On my way to work (I have a 33 mile commute), a carpool lane shows up in the middle of my drive. Its hours are 6-9 and 3-7. So if I am a little behind in the AM, I can actually use the lane. For my route, it only represents about 2 miles of that leg. Then it goes away, and on the way to the bridge, the carpool lane restarts. But the bridge carpool lane is for 3 people, and runs from 6-10. And then it ends when you get on the bridge. So in reality, carpooling would save me maybe 5-10 minutes in the most ideal scenario. The bulk of my route is congested with no carpool lanes. On the way home, there is only a little bit of carpool line on the interchange between the freeways, and then the same short one, for just 2-3 miles. But since, at that juncture, they never monitor the lane, for the last 2-3 miles before it ends, people cheat and jump in the lane during the commute hours, for the last 1/2-2 miles. I have yet to even see the Highway Patrol in the vicinity of the lane during the commute, and before I started my current job i used to commute mostly in the same direction for 5 years. Accessing the carpool lane in the PM would only save 2-3 minutes.

But on the other hand, in the AM commute to SF, there is a thriving casual carpool. Casual Carpool Sites East Bay and San Francisco

This is really cool! There are stops setup all over the east bay. Cars who need to pick up additional people park and wait for riders, and riders show up. Everyone wins. The drivers get a discount on the toll, and the speed of the carpool lane (saves 10-20 minutes at least). The riders get to save on taking the bus or train. All of the drivers generally stop at the designated location in downtown SF (although some people might be going further in the city and you can get dropped off somewhere else).

Oh, and let's say there are no drivers (if you are a rider) the stops are right by the commuter bus stop, so nothing lost. I have done this off and on for 15 years if I need to go to SF in the AM. Since it is informal, you don't have to worry about if you are running late or anything. There are some "rules" and remarkably few issues. Apparently it has been going on for over 20 years. It is also a cool way to check out different cars. My stop is a pretty interesting mix of Priuses, commuter cars (corollas and civics) and luxury SUVs and sports cars.

Who knows, maybe something similar will develop in Denver.
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