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Old 02-12-2015, 02:47 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,504,059 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
You said there was a correlation between high ridership level and rider happiness - "there are people that are
more than happy to use the bus. All one has to do is look at the bus ridership numbers in those cities."

But all that means is there are thousands of low wage service workers in the city who have to get to their jobs.
On $9 an hour wages they can't afford a car so they take the bus. And they don't live by a rail stop because
the housing located near rail stops tend to command higher rents. Of course they are willing to take
the bus but being willing to do something isn't the same as being happy to do it. I'm sure there are many
who are willing to work at Walmart because they have to make a living but that doesn't mean they are
happy to do it. I doubt any of them are.
Sorry, I wasn't referring to one's personal happiness when I made that comment, I was just referring to the number of people that ride transit in Portland by choice. Sorry for that confusion. In Portland we have a high number of transit commuters that do own a car and choose to use transit instead of their car.
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Old 02-12-2015, 02:53 PM
 
1,478 posts, read 2,001,198 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Yeah, higher volume than is demanded in America is really where LRT shows more of a clear advantage with reduced operating costs than BRT.

Going back to real world numbers for an apples to oranges comparison:
Breaking down the economics of bus vs MAX - Portland Transport
Yellow line (least used) gets a subsidy of $1.32 a ride versus a frequent bus being $1.54. Assuming that the yellow line basically replaced a frequent bus, that gives you an idea of savings. 22 cents a ride.

Apples to apples, of course, would be what a bus and rail would cost on identical or as practical as possible to routes.
Using something that approximates real world examples too:

BRT operating on 3 minute headways at grade will disrupt intersections every 90 seconds. LRT at the same capacity will operate at 6 minute headways (disruption every 3 minutes). Do you think an area with heavy passenger vehicle traffic can tolerate the priority signalling of BRT every 90 seconds during rush? Is it feasible to run BRT that frequently to support that kind of volume in an auto-centric culture?
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Old 02-12-2015, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicago76 View Post
Using something that approximates real world examples too:

BRT operating on 3 minute headways at grade will disrupt intersections every 90 seconds. LRT at the same capacity will operate at 6 minute headways (disruption every 3 minutes). Do you think an area with heavy passenger vehicle traffic can tolerate the priority signalling of BRT every 90 seconds during rush? Is it feasible to run BRT that frequently to support that kind of volume in an auto-centric culture?
For BRT to work at the same capacity as LRT it would require to be on a complete grade separated system.
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Old 02-12-2015, 03:35 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
For BRT to work at the same capacity as LRT it would require to be on a complete grade separated system.
That's kind of my point. If you need to build a grade separated system to run 3000 people, but you can get away with running lrt at grade, closer to commercial activity/people (presumably) because it doesn't interfere with vehicular traffic as much, doesn't that undercut brt's primary advantage (low front end capital costs). Presumably at some point near city centers, brt will need to move on grade. Unless a city is lucky enough to have an old rail corridor in the middle of the CBD. You could dump people outside the CBD, but then you've got "last mile" issues to deal with.
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Old 02-12-2015, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,504,059 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicago76 View Post
That's kind of my point. If you need to build a grade separated system to run 3000 people, but you can get away with running lrt at grade, closer to commercial activity/people (presumably) because it doesn't interfere with vehicular traffic as much, doesn't that undercut brt's primary advantage (low front end capital costs). Presumably at some point near city centers, brt will need to move on grade. Unless a city is lucky enough to have an old rail corridor in the middle of the CBD. You could dump people outside the CBD, but then you've got "last mile" issues to deal with.
That is why we typically see BRT run more as a glorified bus system that is only really good for areas that don't need a high transit ridership numbers. The best, though more expensive, is using both types of systems together. Portland does this in places. The transit mall runs both bus and train, and the new bridge will be train and bus used.
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Old 02-12-2015, 04:34 PM
 
Location: Birmingham
779 posts, read 768,146 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
In most cases they are BRT in name only. The number of true BRT systems can be counted on one hand. But even with true BRT the bus stigma doesn't go away. Why would it? A BRT bus looks feels and sounds no different than any other bus. Unless they are a transit expert the average person won't know or care that there's supposed to be a difference. They just see another bus passing by.
I could be wrong but I feel like I've seen BRT that looks like Light Rail but with wheels. Maybe I'm wrong. I, personally, don't understand the bus stigma. I've never had a problem riding the bus. However, if I saw a BRT that looked like a Light Rail, with its own lanes and transit stations, I may view them differently.
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Old 02-12-2015, 04:46 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,504,059 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhamoutlook View Post
I could be wrong but I feel like I've seen BRT that looks like Light Rail but with wheels. Maybe I'm wrong. I, personally, don't understand the bus stigma. I've never had a problem riding the bus. However, if I saw a BRT that looked like a Light Rail, with its own lanes and transit stations, I may view them differently.
You have seen that because they exist. I believe Pittsburgh has a grade separate system, and Seattle's light rail tunnel through downtown use to be a bus tunnel.
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Old 02-12-2015, 05:55 PM
 
4,023 posts, read 3,264,546 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhamoutlook View Post
I could be wrong but I feel like I've seen BRT that looks like Light Rail but with wheels. Maybe I'm wrong. I, personally, don't understand the bus stigma. I've never had a problem riding the bus. However, if I saw a BRT that looked like a Light Rail, with its own lanes and transit stations, I may view them differently.

Some reasons for the bus stigma:

1. Long wait times at the bus stop
2. Spotty reliability, often doesn't come on time or infrequently
3. Harsh ride quality, noisy
4. Ridership tends to be dominated by the minority, blue collar and low-income demographic
which often leads for example to the perception that bus travel is not safe for woman or children.

Buses may have improved frequency and wait times in recent years but there's a still strong public
perception of poor reliability because historically buses have not been very reliable. If people don't think
they can rely on it then they are not going to use it if they have a choice. For commuters that is a critical
point because people who don't show up to work on time tend to lose their jobs.

For me the worst thing is the noise and ride quality. BRT may look a bit like light rail but it still
has the same noise and teeth-rattling ride characteristics because underneath the new skin and facelift its still a bus.

I like to listen to my Ipod which I can do just fine on a train but on the bus its pointless because
the environment is so noisy it drowns out the music. It's hard to have a conversation with someone on the
bus or talk on my cellphone through the incredible rattling and engine noise. It's hard to read a book or
work on a laptop when you're being tossed around every few seconds. Maybe they should start handing out
Dramamine pills for the motion sickness.





Shake rattle and roll on the Los Angeles BRT

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CnJHPKBm7yA
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Old 02-12-2015, 06:03 PM
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
45,983 posts, read 41,929,314 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
Some reasons for the bus stigma:

1. Long wait times at the bus stop
2. Spotty reliability, often doesn't come on time or infrequently
3. Harsh ride quality, noisy
4. Ridership tends to be dominated by the minority, blue collar and low-income demographic
which often leads for example to the perception that bus travel is not safe for woman or children.
BRT usually solves (1) and (2), (3) depends on the vehicles, rail in general is nicer but not always. (4) is usually from a number of factors, often neighborhood demographics.
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Old 02-12-2015, 06:41 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,057 posts, read 16,066,811 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
BRT usually solves (1) and (2), (3) depends on the vehicles, rail in general is nicer but not always. (4) is usually from a number of factors, often neighborhood demographics.
Partly, yeah. But if you're LA-Centric the bus is scary even in white neighborhoods just because it's the bus. There's certainly a component of elitism and being afraid of browns, but it goes beyond that. There's just simply bus cooties. Other places like Seattle not so much. San Francisco is kind of moderate. People mostly don't like the bus because it's ridiculously slow and unreliable rather than because of bus cooties or browns.

Of course, it's not like rail is viewed as any different in LA. Whites are still afraid of the rail almost as much as the bus. Only 20% of ridership is white on LA's light rail. That might sound really low, but then LA is only 30% white. The "LA-Centric" fear of buses and browns we're talking about generally lives in Orange County, although there are a few white enclaves for the white minority to shelter in.
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