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Old 10-12-2009, 04:08 PM
 
1,014 posts, read 2,887,528 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainNJ View Post
i like the idea of the people taking public transit to help me move faster while i drive but i dont see it as the governments place to operate a business at a loss to help. when the government operates transit at a loss, taxpayers are the ones paying for everyone elses ride.
When you take people off the road, but they still do their commerce (for example, a guy who works in midtown gets to work by train instead of driving), you are increasing the capacity of the roads while not lowering economic activity or its resultant tax revenue. The increased capacity on the roads can translate into the creation of commerce that might have been impossible or at least very expensive before you took some of the people off the road.

You might be right that the overall level of transportation funding the government currently engages in is too high. Also, there are plenty of circumstances where funding should go to road improvements or expansion over mass transportation projects. It's not fair to think of rail operating at a "loss" because you need to conceptualize it in terms of a complete transit system- if you don't have rail, then the roads become useless (at least, here in nyc metro) and economic productivity declines (the less barriers to exchange, the better off we are, in aggregate).

My point is that in a theoretical discussion about traffic mitigation, more lanes only equals less traffic if you assume a lot of variables are in place. The biggest one is that local governments won't simply allow more residential, commercial and industrial properties to be developed in response to the added capacity. While the same can be said for the traffic that you take off the road when you get commuters to switch to mass transit, the carrying capacity of a highway is a fraction of the carrying capacity of a train track or a dedicated bus lane. You hit the limits of your system much faster (thus, less economic activity) when you engage in road building to mitigate traffic rather than mass transit infrastructure investment.

On a personal level, traffic is pretty frustrating thing for people to endure, in general. I live in a southern city right now that has the sort of six-lane highways that the op favors. Despite being huge, straight, etc., they are freaking choked; the simplest chores take me a long time to do because I need to drive around in this mess to get anything done.
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Old 10-12-2009, 05:39 PM
 
Location: NJ
31,771 posts, read 40,672,588 times
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i wish i knew the best solution. i do know that in many cases roads in the nyc area are built to create more traffic to discourage driving. for me, increased tolls would be nice because i dont pay for my tolls.

i think there should be public transit from nj to brooklyn.
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Old 10-12-2009, 07:14 PM
 
636 posts, read 1,423,443 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainNJ View Post
i wish i knew the best solution. i do know that in many cases roads in the nyc area are built to create more traffic to discourage driving. for me, increased tolls would be nice because i dont pay for my tolls.

i think there should be public transit from nj to brooklyn.
The market always works itself out. People who are fed up with car traffic will change their situation so they can use mass transit.
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Old 10-12-2009, 07:17 PM
 
Location: NJ
31,771 posts, read 40,672,588 times
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Originally Posted by The Michigan Man View Post
The market always works itself out. People who are fed up with car traffic will change their situation so they can use mass transit.
thats true to a point. i made my trip home today in about 45 minutes. usually it will take 1.5 hours. id love for it to always be 45 but i tolerate 1.5 hrs. so while there will be a breaking point, tolerances can grow.
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Old 10-12-2009, 07:37 PM
 
636 posts, read 1,423,443 times
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Originally Posted by CaptainNJ View Post
thats true to a point. i made my trip home today in about 45 minutes. usually it will take 1.5 hours. id love for it to always be 45 but i tolerate 1.5 hrs. so while there will be a breaking point, tolerances can grow.
If you can tolerate it, how bad can it be?
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