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Old 01-05-2015, 11:53 AM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
People address this problem themselves. If it takes twice as long during rush hour, you simply factor it in to where you live and work and for how much you are willing to drive that distance to be paid for. If public transit is an option(and often even when it is available it is not an useful option) you use it. People can make decisions regarding congestion for themselves.
That doesn't mean there's no problem. The decisions people have to make to try to deal with congestion can lead to bad outcomes, such as somebody having to turn down a job and take a less desirable job because they just can't make the first job work with the commute, or somebody having to move to somewhere that is less desirable to them to try to avoid a long commute, or somebody just having to "suck up" that they now have much less time to spend with their families or for leisure because the only way to get to the job they want is a long commute.


As you said, often public transit is not a useful option. That's a perfect example about the "alternative" to just sitting in traffic usually isn't much of an alternative at all. So people just end up sitting in traffic and having a lower quality of life because of it. Often times there is no "better" way to get to where you are going than driving in heavy congestion, so people have to just "take a hit" in terms of lost time from the congestion.

I mean, if you really think congestion is not a problem, then why ever have more than a one lane road? The reason we have multi-lane roads in many places is because if we didn't, the traffic would be so horrible that our lives would be made horribly inconvenient.

Last edited by stateofnature; 01-05-2015 at 12:03 PM..
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Old 01-05-2015, 12:54 PM
 
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Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
That doesn't mean there's no problem. The decisions people have to make to try to deal with congestion can lead to bad outcomes, such as somebody having to turn down a job and take a less desirable job because they just can't make the first job work with the commute, or somebody having to move to somewhere that is less desirable to them to try to avoid a long commute, or somebody just having to "suck up" that they now have much less time to spend with their families or for leisure because the only way to get to the job they want is a long commute.


As you said, often public transit is not a useful option. That's a perfect example about the "alternative" to just sitting in traffic usually isn't much of an alternative at all. So people just end up sitting in traffic and having a lower quality of life because of it. Often times there is no "better" way to get to where you are going than driving in heavy congestion, so people have to just "take a hit" in terms of lost time from the congestion.

I mean, if you really think congestion is not a problem, then why ever have more than a one lane road? The reason we have multi-lane roads in many places is because if we didn't, the traffic would be so horrible that our lives would be made horribly inconvenient.
Whoever thinks that sitting in traffic is lower quality has never stood up for for an hour in an overcrowded CTA train or over an hour on an Metra train heading into town on an Cub's game day. At least you are sitting in an climate controlled vehicle. There maybe no lost time. Congestion affects buses too.Only grade separated rail is not affected by congestion and it may not be near either your departure point or destination not to mention being tied to the rail's timetable(which may not be convenient.)

People drive because the direct non stop trip is an powerful tool as well as the ability to carry cargo and the ability to come and go as one pleases. In the ten, fifteen or even thirty mins one would have to wait for an bus you could get quite far even in congestion. There are also jobs where you need to be able to travel for work and people often need to be able to pick up or drop off kids before or after work. Not to mention the need to carry stuff or the inherent problems with transfers(crime, weather, time).

The car is simply quite superior to public transit in many aspects.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:10 PM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Whoever thinks that sitting in traffic is lower quality has never stood up for for an hour in an overcrowded CTA train or over an hour on an Metra train heading into town on an Cub's game day. At least you are sitting in an climate controlled vehicle. There maybe no lost time. Congestion affects buses too.Only grade separated rail is not affected by congestion and it may not be near either your departure point or destination not to mention being tied to the rail's timetable(which may not be convenient.)

People drive because the direct non stop trip is an powerful tool as well as the ability to carry cargo and the ability to come and go as one pleases. In the ten, fifteen or even thirty mins one would have to wait for an bus you could get quite far even in congestion. There are also jobs where you need to be able to travel for work and people often need to be able to pick up or drop off kids before or after work. Not to mention the need to carry stuff or the inherent problems with transfers(crime, weather, time).

The car is simply quite superior to public transit in many aspects.
Umm is this in response to me? It seems like you are talking past me. Nothing you are saying is in disagreement to anything I wrote. If you think that because you prefer driving to public transit that therefore everyone does, then you're wrong, but that's not the topic of this thread and I haven't even said anything about public transit.

As I already said, saying that cars are superior to public transit in many aspects--a point I never argued against--actually reinforces why congestion is a problem. Alternatives to driving often aren't very good, so a lot of times people have no choice but to just sit in the traffic. That's a big hit in terms of lost time and frustration.

Putting in place more tolls during high congestion times would discourage people from taking trips they don't need to, freeing up space on the highway for the people who do need to be there. What percentage of drivers on the road during a congested rush hour really need to be driving at that time? Even if it's as high as 95%, getting that 5% off the road would speed up the flow of traffic and save time for those of us who do need to be driving at that time, such as people with inflexible work hours.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
Umm is this in response to me? It seems like you are talking past me. Nothing you are saying is in disagreement to anything I wrote.

As I already said, saying that cars are superior to public transit in many aspects--a point I never argued against--actually reinforces why congestion is a problem. Alternatives to driving often aren't very good, so a lot of times people have no choice but to just sit in the traffic. That's a big hit in terms of lost time and frustration.

Putting in place more tolls during high congestion times would discourage people from taking trips they don't need to, freeing up space on the highway for the people who do need to be there. What percentage of drivers on the road during a congested rush hour really need to be driving at that time? Even if it's as high as 95%, getting that 5% off the road would speed up the flow of traffic and save time for those of us who do need to be driving at that time, such as people with inflexible work hours.
People don't make trips they don't need to. I would bet 90%. If going somewhere else or staying home are options people won't head into congestion. What real people do is they have lives. They don't all work downtown in an office and only need to carry an laptop or briefcase. People travel from burb to burb, city to burb and one side of an city to another. The drop off and pick up kids husbands and other responsibilities. They stop before or after work to do shopping. They need to run errands and thus you get congestion. If all I wanted to do is head downtown for an day of fun and not carry anything I would use the bus. If I need to run errands then I drive.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:23 PM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
People don't make trips they don't need to. I would bet 90%. If going somewhere else or staying home are options people won't head into congestion. What real people do is they have lives. They don't all work downtown in an office and only need to carry an laptop or briefcase. People travel from burb to burb, city to burb and one side of an city to another. The drop off and pick up kids husbands and other responsibilities. They stop before or after work to do shopping. They need to run errands and thus you get congestion. If all I wanted to do is head downtown for an day of fun and not carry anything I would use the bus.
How can you say that "people don't make trips they don't need to" and then in the next sentence guess that maybe 10% of the drivers are people making trips they don't need to? First of all, that's a complete guess and neither you nor I know if that's right. Second of all, even if it is true, 10% is nothing to sneeze at. If congestion were to fall by 10% that would make commutes much much faster in cities that get major traffic jams like DC, Atlanta or LA.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
How can you say that "people don't make trips they don't need to" and then in the next sentence guess that maybe 10% of the drivers are people making trips they don't need to? First of all, that's a complete guess and neither you nor I know if that's right. Second of all, even if it is true, 10% is nothing to sneeze at. If congestion were to fall by 10% that would make commutes much much faster in cities that get major traffic jams like DC, Atlanta or LA.
You get major jams because the majority of people either need to drive to an destination downtown or through downtown to get to their ultimate destination. There are a few rich people who can afford to drive downtown but not the majority. The reason why people drive over take public transit isn't just preference but practicality as well. Public transit is generally slower than driving even in congestion and is not well suited for making multiple trips. Real people do more than just drive to work everyday. They need to drop the kids off at day care or school pick them up and do all sorts of side trips and errands. Public transit sucks when you need to carry cargo or do side trips or run errands like drop clothes off at the cleaners before heading to work. Taking the slow method to work isn't an problem when single but when you need to pick up the kids from daycare by an certain time lest you get charged it is an problem. Or when you are unsure about how long your shift will last again it becomes an problem.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
You get major jams because the majority of people either need to drive to an destination downtown or through downtown to get to their ultimate destination. There are a few rich people who can afford to drive downtown but not the majority. The reason why people drive over take public transit isn't just preference but practicality as well. Public transit is generally slower than driving even in congestion and is not well suited for making multiple trips. Real people do more than just drive to work everyday. They need to drop the kids off at day care or school pick them up and do all sorts of side trips and errands. Public transit sucks when you need to carry cargo or do side trips or run errands like drop clothes off at the cleaners before heading to work. Taking the slow method to work isn't an problem when single but when you need to pick up the kids from daycare by an certain time lest you get charged it is an problem. Or when you are unsure about how long your shift will last again it becomes an problem.
Again, completely not at all in response to what I said. When did I even say anything about public transit? It's like you're not even reading what I'm typing, so no real point in continuing to talk to you. If you want to have your own one-sided debate about how much public transit sucks, go ahead.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
Again, completely not at all in response to what I said. When did I even say anything about public transit? It's like you're not even reading what I'm typing, so no real point in continuing to talk to you.
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.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:44 PM
 
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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.
As you already admitted, as much as 10% of the people driving during high congestion times don't need to be there. If you get those 10% off the road it saves time for everybody else. And I suspect the true number is more than 10%.
This isn't just theoretical. There are tons of studies out there about how congestion pricing, when tried, has reduced commuting times.
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Old 01-05-2015, 01:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
As you already admitted, as much as 10% of the people driving during high congestion times don't need to be there. If you get those 10% off the road it saves time for everybody else. And I suspect the true number is more than 10%.
This isn't just theoretical. There are tons of studies out there about how congestion pricing, when tried, has reduced commuting times.
Yeah as people stop heading to the area or park elsewhere in the city to get the bus and so on. All bad effects.People are not being irrational by driving into an area they are simply choosing the method which best suits their needs.
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