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Old 01-21-2015, 08:54 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Area doesn't very developed though.
Telegraph Road is an 8-10 lane boulevard with traffic volumes of 70,000 ADT. You don't get that kind of traffic driving through farm fields. Taking the SMART bus down Telegraph would take significantly longer than driving a personal vehicle.
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:08 AM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
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Interesting story on our local news this morning. Since the gas prices have fallen, there has been a big increase in traffic as more public transit commuters get back into the car. I personally have stayed with the bus, but we are doing more weekend trips.

Drop in gas prices could mean more gridlock
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:15 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,992 posts, read 42,037,172 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by impala096 View Post
Telegraph Road is an 8-10 lane boulevard with traffic volumes of 70,000 ADT. You don't get that kind of traffic driving through farm fields. Taking the SMART bus down Telegraph would take significantly longer than driving a personal vehicle.
The surroundings from the road don't look built up. Say arterial roads in Levittown are more built up:

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Jeric...,84.1,,0,-4.02
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:21 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 26 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,020 posts, read 102,689,903 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJNEOA View Post
After reading several pages of this thread, here is what I see in a nutshell:

- Urban transit riders, who live someplace where transit is pervasive enough to be convenient, argue the benefits of public transit and want more.
- Suburban posters, who live in car-centric locations where transit options are barely even a second thought, argue that transit doesn't work well enough to ever be useful. These folks do not want to spend money on transit projects, or at least, they want to spend as little as possible. Many don't like transit, even if it were a convenient option.***
- Rural posters, who obviously live someplace where transit isn't an option, argue that transit doesn't work well enough to ever be used.

***There are a few anomalies in all cases. In a few cases, it seems a suburban poster wants better transit, but can't. Many times this is someone who sees a car as a hefty expense.

What seems to be largely ignored are the building blocks of the US economy and the existing built environment IMO. The USA's economy is built on car purchases and housing. A reduction in the number of automobile purchases, road building or a lull in newly built homes and we spin into a downward spiral economically. Then there's oil and gasoline purchases. There is a reason the USA has absolutely very little following in the way of transit.

And of course transit isn't going to work for someone working in Collierville, TN and living in Southhaven, MS when the central city has anemic transit options in the first place. We have sunk our money as a country into a single mode of transportation so heavily for the past 60 years that there are a small handful of places where real options actually exist. The USA isn't unique in geography, climate or most anything else tangible that stops it from investing in transit. It's unique in mindset; in the great riches and industrial success following WWII (the rest of the industrialized world was bombed out) that allowed a burgeoning middle class buy personal automobiles at a rate that was unfathomable by the rest of the world. We invested in roads, dismantled train service, and left our transit systems stagnant. And from that history, we are now here, getting poorer as a much larger nation with a single mode of transportation for at least 85% of Americans. A country built at a very low density with only the automobile in mind (first thought at least), talking about how to throw in another option that's largely unpopular (due to inexperience, the idea of change, cost, preference, etc.).

I guess my point in all this rambling is that there is such a very large lack of perspective on these boards sometimes (and I'm guilty too). Transit will never serve a majority of Americans, nor should anyone make that argument. The person living a rural or low-density suburban life (not inner-ring or streetcar) will likely never take transit in their lifetime unless they want to. Any arguments outside improving the densest corridors in metros with real traffic and places that really need to be connected, are not worth having IMO. And I think the percentages in the OP show that's the case.
Nitpick #2-the bolds are all gross generalizations. In the Denver area, the entire RTD voted for the Fastracks proposal; it couldn't have been built otherwise, and the suburbanites outnumber the city residents by about 4.5 to 1. Many people out here in the boonies, 25 miles from Denver, take transit to work, either locally or into Denver. Who does take transit if they don't want to? Only someone w/o a car who can't afford to buy one.

I don't recall hearing from any rural posters in this thread.
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:39 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FallsAngel View Post
Nitpick #2-the bolds are all gross generalizations. In the Denver area, the entire RTD voted for the Fastracks proposal; it couldn't have been built otherwise, and the suburbanites outnumber the city residents by about 4.5 to 1. Many people out here in the boonies, 25 miles from Denver, take transit to work, either locally or into Denver. Who does take transit if they don't want to? Only someone w/o a car who can't afford to buy one.
On average, besides the situation I mentioned, transit ridership is very low in low density outer suburbs. Louisville looks higher than most of the area but otherwise it looks like transit share is about 5%.

Quote:
I don't recall hearing from any rural posters in this thread.
There was one who said the nearest bus stop was ten miles from him and another that mentioned some rather far distances to stores that sounded rural.
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Mt. Airy
5,311 posts, read 5,339,857 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FallsAngel View Post
Nitpick #2-the bolds are all gross generalizations. In the Denver area, the entire RTD voted for the Fastracks proposal; it couldn't have been built otherwise, and the suburbanites outnumber the city residents by about 4.5 to 1. Many people out here in the boonies, 25 miles from Denver, take transit to work, either locally or into Denver.
No question they're generalizations. And each region has its own struggles for sure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FallsAngel View Post
Who does take transit if they don't want to? Only someone w/o a car who can't afford to buy one.
Or someone who needs to in order to save money (they may have a car). Someone who is uncomfortable driving in traffic or has a hassle finding parking. And no question owning a car is becoming more of an unmanageable challenge for many Americans:

New study says most can't afford used cars.
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:47 AM
 
Location: Mt. Airy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
To nitpick, one of my parents lives in a large lot suburbia and takes transit every day. Drives to the train station then takes the train to Manhattan. And yes, not bothered by buses if that's what's available in the city (say going around to a few spots in Philadelphia). There's a number of train lines for New York City going through rather low density often affluent areas that get decent ridership, even decent ridership on weekends. Boston and Philadelphia have similar but their ridership isn't as high. The density is low at one end, but the other end is car unfriendly. That situation often has a higher transit use the opposite: moderately high suburban densities but decentralized destinations.
Yeah, where far-reaching transit systems exist there are anomalies for sure. NYC has something most cities don't have, a great commuter rail network that reaches out to large-lot suburbia. In so many other cities, that's not an option.
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Old 01-21-2015, 10:08 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

Over $104,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum and additional contests are planned
 
Location: Long Island / NYC
45,992 posts, read 42,037,172 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJNEOA View Post
Yeah, where far-reaching transit systems exist there are anomalies for sure. NYC has something most cities don't have, a great commuter rail network that reaches out to large-lot suburbia. In so many other cities, that's not an option.
NYC has two other advantages for transit: a huge amount of jobs in the center, the most useful for a radial rail network, and a rather car-unfriendly center, with lots of traffic congestion and high parking costs. You could plop a similar sized network in Houston or Los Angeles and it wouldn't get anywhere near as much ridesrhip. Los Angeles' commuter rail network is rather extensive (though not much in closer in suburbs) but doesn't get that high ridership.
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Old 01-21-2015, 10:20 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 26 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,020 posts, read 102,689,903 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
On average, besides the situation I mentioned, transit ridership is very low in low density outer suburbs. Louisville looks higher than most of the area but otherwise it looks like transit share is about 5%.



There was one who said the nearest bus stop was ten miles from him and another that mentioned some rather far distances to stores that sounded rural.
Louisville is probably no more dense than any other predominantly (note that word) single-family home suburb in the metro area.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AJNEOA View Post
No question they're generalizations. And each region has its own struggles for sure.



Or someone who needs to in order to save money (they may have a car). Someone who is uncomfortable driving in traffic or has a hassle finding parking. And no question owning a car is becoming more of an unmanageable challenge for many Americans:

New study says most can't afford used cars.
If you have a car, it is cheaper to drive it than to leave it in the garage and take transit. Local fare here is $2.25 one way. You can drive a lot of miles, especially at today's lower gas prices, for that. Before you go pulling up a link from the AAA or someone about how much per mile it costs to drive a car, remember they're including some costs that have nothing to do with getting from "Point A" to "Point B",e.g. depreciation (going to happen even with the car in the garage or on the street in front of your house), interest on your loan (ditto, and you may not even have a loan), etc.

If you read your link, you'd see that they're talking specifically about buying used cars, and really, I'd like to see their methodology. In any event, it doesn't say that car ownership is becoming an unmanageable challenge.
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Old 01-21-2015, 10:51 AM
 
Location: EPWV
11,068 posts, read 6,210,090 times
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I like the alternative of being able to use public transit like the MARC train. True, I do have to at least drive to the train station and park the car but at least once I'm on the train, I can relax. I've tried a van pool once. I couldn't relax so much on that. The Metro isn't too bad if I was making short trips such as White Flint to Rockville or White Flint to say, Gaithersburg. I know on the MARC, that if I need to use the rest room, it's available. Try asking a Metro kiosk person if you can use the restroom. The seats are more comfortable on the MARC train too. If I was driving my car between such points in Maryland, it would matter what time of day it was as well. There are extenuating circumstances but for the most part, because I do live further out of the area, this is what works best for me.

I used to take Ride On buses when I lived in Montg Co., and at that time, that's what worked best for me. I kinda wish I was more aware that I could have taken the MARC from either Germantown or Metropolitan Grove but I opted to go that way (bus/busses). At one time I did have to take a transfer bus but I don't believe it happened very often (temp worker years ago). Waiting outside in inclement weather for a train or a bus to show was/is probably the hardest part of the commuting experience.
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