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Old 01-05-2015, 03:03 PM
 
2,553 posts, read 2,006,214 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Your thought is to put an toll on the road during congestion which hurts everyday people. It does not fix congestion because the reason why the road is congested is because lots of people either need or want to be there. It is just an simple tax. It does not encourage people to use alternative means because if those alternate means were useful they would have used them.
That's not wholly accurate.

As I've written before, the reason the road is congested during peak hours is (a) high inherent demand for travel during those hours AND (b) we do not place a financial price on arterial roadway use during those hours. At $0 for access, anyone who has a need and ability to be on the road at that time has no financial disincentive not to.

Demand-based tolls in the short-term would encourage people to asses the value of the trip in question, long-term they would be incentivized to make choices--where they live, how they get around, how many trips they take, etc.--that include ("internalize") in the present tense the financial cost of that trip. If tolls on arterials replaced gas taxes, the cost of maintaining that roadway would be, wholly or in part, shifted away from society in general and on to the users of that roadway.
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Old 01-05-2015, 03:05 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetgraphics View Post
Widening roads is a "dead end" solution
....
A four track rail system (ex: NYC Subway) has the potential to move 100,000 passengers per hour. This capacity would require 42 lanes of superhighway to match.
No widening will ever resolve the problem.

The Real Reason U.S. Gas Is So Cheap Is Americans Don't Pay the True Cost of Driving - CityLab
The author suggests that Americans need to directly pay around $7.62 a gallon (taxes included) to cover the underlying costs.
So why haven't the cities that have implemented light rail reduced traffic congestion? In fact, they are seeing traffic congestion increase at a greater level than cities that have primarily pursued road expansion.
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Old 01-05-2015, 03:12 PM
 
Location: The City
22,331 posts, read 32,176,306 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oceangaia View Post
So why haven't the cities that have implemented light rail reduced traffic congestion? In fact, they are seeing traffic congestion increase at a greater level than cities that have primarily pursued road expansion.
just because rail is built does mean it will be used (or even roads for that matter) as they need to connect people with places of need (retial, residential, jobs etc.. Also rail needs to be able to connect to other aspects. A single line only assists for one particular destination or route without integration. Also density plays a role and access. Its not cut and dry. In the end roads, PT and development all need to be comingled to see optimization. Most development today is more patchwork. Disjointed residential and spacial commercial and retail dont always lend well to PT.
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Old 01-05-2015, 03:38 PM
46H
 
967 posts, read 587,016 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post
That's not wholly accurate.

As I've written before, the reason the road is congested during peak hours is (a) high inherent demand for travel during those hours AND (b) we do not place a financial price on arterial roadway use during those hours. At $0 for access, anyone who has a need and ability to be on the road at that time has no financial disincentive not to.

Demand-based tolls in the short-term would encourage people to asses the value of the trip in question, long-term they would be incentivized to make choices--where they live, how they get around, how many trips they take, etc.--that include ("internalize") in the present tense the financial cost of that trip. If tolls on arterials replaced gas taxes, the cost of maintaining that roadway would be, wholly or in part, shifted away from society in general and on to the users of that roadway.
I doubt people with families are going to move because tolls are added to a road. The expenses of uprooting a family will overwhelm the added expense of a toll. If you are using arterials there is a good chance that mass transit for your commute is almost impossible (suburb to suburb). If you did add tolls to arterials there is no way gas taxes will be reduced. The idea that only the people who use a road benefit from the road is not accurate either. Tolls will push people onto local roads ruining the local roads. Also, since every product moves by truck adding more tolls will cost everybody more money.

There is also the guarantee that the tolls get misapplied to some other "important" public "need". Example one is the Port Authority of NY/NJ and all the real estate they own.
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Old 01-05-2015, 04:30 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 46H View Post
I doubt people with families are going to move because tolls are added to a road. The expenses of uprooting a family will overwhelm the added expense of a toll. If you are using arterials there is a good chance that mass transit for your commute is almost impossible (suburb to suburb). If you did add tolls to arterials there is no way gas taxes will be reduced. The idea that only the people who use a road benefit from the road is not accurate either. Tolls will push people onto local roads ruining the local roads. Also, since every product moves by truck adding more tolls will cost everybody more money.

There is also the guarantee that the tolls get misapplied to some other "important" public "need". Example one is the Port Authority of NY/NJ and all the real estate they own.
First thing, by arterials I mean grade-separated roadways, such a interstates, highways, freeways, and many expressways. I do not mean city streets.

Long-term, people react to changes in costs and contexts. If they became frustrated that tolls were costing them "too much," they might choose to move if a better alternative came available. Or they might choose to travel differently or to travel less. The point is that they now have a more consistent way of putting a price on their roadway use. It becomes a good with a known price, like milk or steaks or cigarettes.

I didn't suggest that only road users are beneficiaries of roadways. It seems safe to say we all benefit from roads. The thing is, we all pay for roads in a way that is wholly disconnected from how much benefit we derive from those roads--if I get 10 MPG and you have a Tesla, would it make any sense to say that you derive less benefit from the roadway because you pay less in gas taxes? By using demand-based arterial access pricing (tolls), costs are passed on to beneficiaries of those arterials. Consumers would, yes, carry some of the burden of the cost of moving goods to market. As a consumer, goods which arrived to market via arterial roadways would cost me more. But, as a tax payer I wouldn't be paying for upkeep and expansion of those arterial roadways. I would only be paying for the value I personally get out of the roadway.

As to your point re: misapplication of government funds, that's always possible. Just because something is possible does not, in and of itself, mean we shouldn't do something. It only means we should use caution.
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Old 01-05-2015, 04:32 PM
 
Location: Prepperland
13,738 posts, read 9,852,840 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oceangaia View Post
So why haven't the cities that have implemented light rail reduced traffic congestion? In fact, they are seeing traffic congestion increase at a greater level than cities that have primarily pursued road expansion.
The same reason you don't see one-legged runners win races...
- - -
After 100 years of subsidy to the road / petroleum / automobile hegemony, a few rail projects don't amount to much. The tragic reduction in rail rights of way also factor in this debacle.
[] Peak heavy rail mileage: 254,000 miles (less than 160,000 miles today)
[] Streetcar track: 34,404 miles by 1907, in over 140 cities, with 60,000 cars in service.
[] Interurban track: 15,500 miles by 1917
(Total rail mileage was once over 300,000 miles - now, far less)
In contrast - - -
[] Interstate Highway System : 47,714 miles
In 1907 => 34,404 miles / 140 cities = 246 miles of track per city (average)

The cities that have implemented modern light rail do not have 246 miles of track installed.
Portland's MAX has only 52.4 miles of track.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MAX_Light_Rail

If Portland increased its track mileage by a factor of four, would it serve more customers?
Yes.
And as more ride the trains, less are on the roads.

Even the vaunted NYC subway was no match for trolley networks.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Subway
The New York City Subway is also one of the world's oldest public transit systems. Overall, the system contains 232 miles (373 km) of routes.
. . .
www.nycsubway.org: Historical Maps
1904=> "Underground rapid transit routes proposed by the Metropolitan interests to be operated under a free transfer system in connection with their three hundred miles of surface lines on Manhattan island."
NYC's Manhattan island had 300+ miles of surface (trolley) tracks.

Last edited by jetgraphics; 01-05-2015 at 04:49 PM..
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Old 01-05-2015, 05:36 PM
 
9,685 posts, read 4,566,593 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetgraphics View Post
The same reason you don't see one-legged runners win races...
- - -
After 100 years of subsidy to the road / petroleum / automobile hegemony, a few rail projects don't amount to much. The tragic reduction in rail rights of way also factor in this debacle.
In other words, no one can statistically show where light rail has actually reduced traffic congestion, only throw out excuses why it hasn't.

We could compare Dallas with Houston, similar sized metro areas. Dallas DART has 85 miles of light rail and 36 miles of commuter rail. Houston has 7 miles of light rail. Houston has relied heavily on freeway expansion to reduce congestion. Both cities have horrible traffic but since 1982 we have seen congestion steadily get worse relative to Houston in all performance metrics - annual travel delay, increased commute times, reduced average speeds, etc.

The cities who have seen traffic deteriorate the most reads like a Who's Who of cities who built rail. If NYC does not have enough transit to reduce congestion then no city in the U.S. ever will. Look, there are plenty of positive aspects of mass transit, but rail advocates need to quit the phony arguments about congestion.
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Old 01-05-2015, 06:01 PM
 
11,270 posts, read 8,439,906 times
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I don't think the plumbing analogy holds water.
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Old 01-05-2015, 06:56 PM
 
Location: Prepperland
13,738 posts, read 9,852,840 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oceangaia View Post
In other words, no one can statistically show where light rail has actually reduced traffic congestion, only throw out excuses why it hasn't.

We could compare Dallas with Houston, similar sized metro areas. Dallas DART has 85 miles of light rail and 36 miles of commuter rail. Houston has 7 miles of light rail. Houston has relied heavily on freeway expansion to reduce congestion. Both cities have horrible traffic but since 1982 we have seen congestion steadily get worse relative to Houston in all performance metrics - annual travel delay, increased commute times, reduced average speeds, etc.

The cities who have seen traffic deteriorate the most reads like a Who's Who of cities who built rail. If NYC does not have enough transit to reduce congestion then no city in the U.S. ever will. Look, there are plenty of positive aspects of mass transit, but rail advocates need to quit the phony arguments about congestion.
Wrong conclusion.
The network of rail has to be far more robust than a few routes. Unfortunately, the opponents of electric traction rail DESTROYED the rights of way to prevent their return. It was no accident.

As to the issue of NYC, it did retain its subway but tore up its street tracks (which reached far more destinations). But that was due, in part, to the Progressives of the 1930s, who hated private enterprise.

The Third Rail - Back to the Future - page 1
The End of Innovation

New York City politics was not standing still, however. Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia, who had taken office in 1933, was no friend of streetcars, of elevated lines, or of private ownership of transit. He pressed relentlessly for “Unification,” the City takeover of the BMT and IRT. The IRT was happy to go out of business but the BMT fought almost to the last.
After taking over the private companies, not only did the innovations of the BMT end, but the City lost its taste for subway building. The IND “Second System” of 1929 remains unbuilt. The private lines that attracted IND competition were abandoned, several immediately and more as the years went on.
. . .
The StreetCar Conspiracy
At the time [1920], 90 percent of all trips were by rail, chiefly electric rail; only one in 10 Americans owned an automobile. There were 1,200 separate electric street and interurban railways, a thriving and profitable industry with 44,000 miles of track, 300,000 employees, 15 billion annual passengers, and $1 billion in income. Virtually every city and town in America of more than 2,500 people had its own electric rail system.
With this kind of private enterprise rail network, people wouldn't be hostage to the automobile / petroleum / pavement hegemony.
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Old 01-05-2015, 09:00 PM
 
9,685 posts, read 4,566,593 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetgraphics View Post
Wrong conclusion.
The network of rail has to be far more robust than a few routes. Unfortunately, the opponents of electric traction rail DESTROYED the rights of way to prevent their return. It was no accident.
More excuses why rail has not relieved congestion as promised.

So then, time to abandon a solution that will never achieve the robustness that is apparently required to be effective.
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