HomeDiagramsDatabaseMapsForumSkyscraper Posters
     

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > United States > Texas & Southcentral > Austin

Reply

 
Thread Tools Display Modes
     
     
  #41  
Old Posted Aug 18, 2007, 5:51 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
Quote:
Originally Posted by JAM View Post
In my mind, this rail design is only a small step in the evolution of what will become a total mass transit plan for the Austin metro area. And am looking forward too it!
It's a "step" in a total mass transit plan in the same way that driving to El Paso is the first step in your trip to New York City.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #42  
Old Posted Aug 18, 2007, 8:50 PM
paulsjv paulsjv is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 521
Well if the rail is even some what of a success maybe that will be the catalyst to actually build a light rail system! Of course it's pure speculation on my part but I think it would be served better to try and make the rail system we got a success instead of constantly saying it's going to fail. If the rail does fail it will hurt Austin a lot more so I'd rather do my best to make it succeed because it's success will more than likely spur other great transit things! So I may be in a minority when it comes to walking a few blocks to get to my final destination but I hope others will follow suit in order to make the rail a success and therefore have even better mass transit in the future! It's what we are going to get so constantly complaining about it like M1 seems to do doesn't really serve a purpose. However, JAM is right that his point of view is very valuable because now we know where the weaknesses of the current rail solution is and there can be ideas spurred from that to try and make it a success despite everything that M1 says and does to make it a total failure.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #43  
Old Posted Aug 18, 2007, 9:30 PM
DrewDizzle DrewDizzle is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 207
Quote:
Well if the rail is even some what of a success
What are the metrics for a successful rail line? Measuring 2,000 "riders" which may only be 800-1,000 actual people.
__________________
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #44  
Old Posted Aug 18, 2007, 11:24 PM
paulsjv paulsjv is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrewDizzle View Post
What are the metrics for a successful rail line? Measuring 2,000 "riders" which may only be 800-1,000 actual people.
I don't know what the measures are but I bet M1EK does!
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #45  
Old Posted Aug 21, 2007, 3:08 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
Quote:
Originally Posted by paulsjv View Post
Well if the rail is even some what of a success maybe that will be the catalyst to actually build a light rail system! Of course it's pure speculation on my part but I think it would be served better to try and make the rail system we got a success instead of constantly saying it's going to fail. If the rail does fail it will hurt Austin a lot more so I'd rather do my best to make it succeed because it's success will more than likely spur other great transit things! So I may be in a minority when it comes to walking a few blocks to get to my final destination but I hope others will follow suit in order to make the rail a success and therefore have even better mass transit in the future! It's what we are going to get so constantly complaining about it like M1 seems to do doesn't really serve a purpose. However, JAM is right that his point of view is very valuable because now we know where the weaknesses of the current rail solution is and there can be ideas spurred from that to try and make it a success despite everything that M1 says and does to make it a total failure.
"a few blocks" is what you'd do with the quarter-mile rule. That's not what we built here. We're talking about a walk of about a mile to get from the Convention Center to Seaholm; and about a half-mile to get to the closest major office buildings in downtown.

The challenge is that our political leaders went on the record as saying "let's ride and then decide", so the work of guys like me who obviously would want a complete change of direction got even harder. In the meantime, if it somehow does exceed expectations (by carring 2000 riders per day instead of 1500, which is absolutely pathetic by light-rail standards, which is how Capital Metro's shills are branding this thing), the path for 'expansion' is to build a streetcar circulator. Remember, it is impossible to extend this commuter rail service to UT or the Capitol. Physically impossible. The vehicles can't turn on city streets - they're too porky..

And remember, too, wishful thinking is no substitute for transit research that has shown that most people won't walk more than a quarter-mile from station to endpoint, and most choice commuters will not accept a transfer (even to a second, good, rail line) in cities where parking doesn't command super-premium prices.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #46  
Old Posted Aug 30, 2007, 5:01 AM
MichaelB MichaelB is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: North edge of Downtown
Posts: 2,672
Quote:
Originally Posted by paulsjv View Post
Well if the rail is even some what of a success maybe that will be the catalyst to actually build a light rail system! Of course it's pure speculation on my part but I think it would be served better to try and make the rail system we got a success instead of constantly saying it's going to fail.
I appreciate your optimism. I don't even have a reason to ride what rail there will be, but I will, just to do it. ( I live downtown....north end.... and, yes, walk to Seaholm area and covention center all the time) It does not seem a likey route.... but I hope it has some success.

While I wish light rail would have passed..... it will. I am reminded of the non-built expressways Mopac (?) posted recently. Sometimes what seems like a good idea needs more time to perk..... I am sure when it finally happens (light rail...or whatever we will call it by then) it will be even better than what we turned down. Why? Because even more information and advancements will have taken place. Not how I planned it..... but I am sure that it will eventually happen ..... and probably benefit from the delay. It's just how things happen. Time will tell.....
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #47  
Old Posted Aug 30, 2007, 1:34 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelB View Post
I appreciate your optimism. I don't even have a reason to ride what rail there will be, but I will, just to do it. ( I live downtown....north end.... and, yes, walk to Seaholm area and covention center all the time) It does not seem a likey route.... but I hope it has some success.

While I wish light rail would have passed..... it will. I am reminded of the non-built expressways Mopac (?) posted recently. Sometimes what seems like a good idea needs more time to perk..... I am sure when it finally happens (light rail...or whatever we will call it by then) it will be even better than what we turned down. Why? Because even more information and advancements will have taken place. Not how I planned it..... but I am sure that it will eventually happen ..... and probably benefit from the delay. It's just how things happen. Time will tell.....
The implementation of commuter rail precludes light rail from happening. In other words, for light rail to "finally happen", we first have to admit that commuter rail was a disaster; tear up all the old stations; tear up all the old track; and build new LRT-capable double-track and infrastructure like we would have done in 2000.

Y'all wonder why I have to keep posting this. commuter rail is NOT, nor can it ever be, a step towards light rail; it is, in fact, about six steps the other direction.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #48  
Old Posted Aug 30, 2007, 8:29 PM
JDSII JDSII is offline
JDSII
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Austin
Posts: 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by M1EK View Post
The implementation of commuter rail precludes light rail from happening. In other words, for light rail to "finally happen", we first have to admit that commuter rail was a disaster; tear up all the old stations; tear up all the old track; and build new LRT-capable double-track and infrastructure like we would have done in 2000.

Y'all wonder why I have to keep posting this. commuter rail is NOT, nor can it ever be, a step towards light rail; it is, in fact, about six steps the other direction.
I disagree. Commuter rail can live harmoniously with light rail. Commuter rail serves long distances while light rail serves medium to short distances. Cities such as New York, LA, and Chicago have both systems and they feed off of each other. Although these systems may not be light rail, subway is essentially below ground light rail. We can't build subways in Austin due to the sensitivity of our water table and various underground caves. But to better prove my point, look at Dallas. Dallas has light rail (DART Rail) AND commuter rail (TRE). They work GREAT together and will continue to do so as DART expands their rail routes and services over the next 15 years.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #49  
Old Posted Aug 30, 2007, 9:06 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
Quote:
Originally Posted by JDSII View Post
I disagree. Commuter rail can live harmoniously with light rail. Commuter rail serves long distances while light rail serves medium to short distances. Cities such as New York, LA, and Chicago have both systems and they feed off of each other. Although these systems may not be light rail, subway is essentially below ground light rail. We can't build subways in Austin due to the sensitivity of our water table and various underground caves. But to better prove my point, look at Dallas. Dallas has light rail (DART Rail) AND commuter rail (TRE). They work GREAT together and will continue to do so as DART expands their rail routes and services over the next 15 years.
The only feasible light rail route in Austin would have used the exact same ground as the commuter rail route does for the northern 2/3 of its route and is not compatible with commuter rail service on the same track. Without that segment, it's not going to happen, barring some kind of sea change at the federal level. No, you can't get the Feds to fund a route which just keeps going north on Lamar up towards Rundberg - demographics suck and speed will be low; ditto with Burnet, etc.

The beauty of the original red/green route is that it hit BOTH the suburban park-and-rides AND the dense urban residential areas of central Austin, while delivering passengers directly to UT, the Capitol, and downtown. With just one or the other, there's no chance the Feds will kick in even one dollar (which is why Capital Metro decided against seeking federal funding for the commuter rail start despite early indications they would - they knew they'd get killed in a review).

As for the Dallas analogy - if TRE had started running on the same ROW you needed for the DART starter line, DART would never have happened, and you'd be facing the same craptacular dilemna we are - where a bunch of naive fools on this forum keep convincing themselves it's going to be butterflies and rainbows despite Capital Metro themselves telling them it's going to be 1500 people a day (MAXIMUM capacity 2000 per day!), and people like me have to hope it fails quickly so we can get on with tearing it up and doing the right thing.

Last edited by M1EK; Aug 30, 2007 at 9:20 PM.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #50  
Old Posted Aug 31, 2007, 3:45 PM
tildahat tildahat is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 193
Anyone heard when the Rapid Bus is going to start? Yes, I know it's probably not enough of an improvement to justify the cost, but it will actually help my Battle Bend to UT commute, at least theoretically. (Though most of that improvement will come from 1) not stopping EVERY SINGLE BLOCK downtown and 2) making it plausible to connect from the #1 Battle Bend spur, which doesn't work with the 101.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #51  
Old Posted Aug 31, 2007, 4:53 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
Rapid Bus fell off the map about six months ago when McCracken raised a red flag about the cost-benefit ratio - as far as I can tell, CM has basically stuck the whole plan on a shelf (they don't talk about a prospective opening date in any new materials; and some older stuff indicated delays).

And, no, rapid bus wouldn't have helped your commute - sorry, but that was wishful thinking. Have you driven on the most congested portions of the #1 lately? Traffic backed up from 4 lights ahead can't be fixed by holding the light green directly in front of you.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #52  
Old Posted Aug 31, 2007, 8:14 PM
JAM's Avatar
JAM JAM is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 2,464
I agree that it would not help during peak rush hour - unless, they created peak hour dedicated bus lanes. Similar to what Dallas and Houston have.

It could help during other times, theoretically only having to stop to pick up/drop off passengers - but probably not justified by the expenditures required.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #53  
Old Posted Aug 31, 2007, 8:53 PM
tildahat tildahat is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by M1EK View Post
Rapid Bus fell off the map about six months ago when McCracken raised a red flag about the cost-benefit ratio - as far as I can tell, CM has basically stuck the whole plan on a shelf (they don't talk about a prospective opening date in any new materials; and some older stuff indicated delays).

And, no, rapid bus wouldn't have helped your commute - sorry, but that was wishful thinking. Have you driven on the most congested portions of the #1 lately? Traffic backed up from 4 lights ahead can't be fixed by holding the light green directly in front of you.
I ride the #1 to and from work everyday and have for four years. We lose tons of time downtown when we miss lights because we are picking up passengers every block. Or because we're stuck behind another bus picking up passengers. So just the act of taking the bus off Congress downtown and stopping only a few times actually would make a difference. Of course you could just reroute the #101 and accomplish the same thing. Why does an express bus stop every block downtown?

And if it actually came at the headways they were talking about so I could transfer, that would make a difference too. I have to wait so long for the 101 transfer that it negates the speed benefit.

I think it's probably best for the city to shelve it - but I would stilll have personally enjoyed the marginal improvements.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #54  
Old Posted Aug 31, 2007, 10:02 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
The express stops every stop downtown because most people taking it work downtown (or at UT) - this is par for the course for an express route - consider the express subway in from Queens to Manhattan, for instance - skips lots of stops before the river but hits most of the Manhattan ones. It just sucks that your particular stop is actually past the center and on the outbound leg as far as they're concerned.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #55  
Old Posted Sep 1, 2007, 12:17 AM
DrewDizzle DrewDizzle is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 207
Yea but stopping every block is ridiculous. Stopping every two or three wouldn't be.
__________________
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #56  
Old Posted Sep 1, 2007, 4:01 AM
tildahat tildahat is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrewDizzle View Post
Yea but stopping every block is ridiculous. Stopping every two or three wouldn't be.
Yeah, I agree, in Houston ALL buses downtown alternate every other block. (Or did 8 years ago..) Every third block and you would never be more than a block from a stop. That's not unreasonable.

Of course the whole cluster&^%$ effect is an issue too since almost every route gets on Congress in the CBD.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #57  
Old Posted Sep 1, 2007, 4:36 PM
NormalgeNyus NormalgeNyus is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 174
from what i am reading is that you guys want a full fledge light rail system to go to every place possible and you want it to magically appear out of no wear and that land use is not even in the discussion. This kind of thinking is what is keeping this issue grounded.

the first step is to find out where is can be built then start off with a small plan to get it started if it is successful then you can expand to more places if the land is there to build on.

there may be places you wish the train would go but due to the land already being built on they cant put it there.

and a second point is you guys think that people do not walk that far. this is untrue people are willing to walk there just has to be something to go to. tones of people will be willing to walk atleast a half a mile and most do it every day anyway
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #58  
Old Posted Sep 2, 2007, 2:27 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
Dear NormalGenyus:

How about familiarizing yourself with the issue first?

The commuter rail line uses a critical part of the ONLY FEASIBLE ROUTE FOR LIGHT RAIL. Once commuter rail is there, light rail can't go there; and commuter rail can't be expanded to go where light rail would have gone (the vehicles aren't capable).

And the 1/4 mile walk rule is from national research on transit in all sorts of conditions and is iron-clad. Anything else is wishful thinking.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #59  
Old Posted Sep 2, 2007, 3:38 PM
RobDSM RobDSM is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Posts: 215
I'm not trying to flame the fire here, but where would anyone really want to go with this? Are they hoping that this will create a lot of future employment in East Austin and around Highland Mall?


www.impactnewspaper.com
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #60  
Old Posted Sep 3, 2007, 2:22 PM
M1EK's Avatar
M1EK M1EK is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,216
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobDSM View Post
I'm not trying to flame the fire here, but where would anyone really want to go with this? Are they hoping that this will create a lot of future employment in East Austin and around Highland Mall?


www.impactnewspaper.com
1. Cap Metro knows people won't walk from the Convention Center to most of downtown (and obviously not to UT and the Capitol). So that puts them ahead of most of the wishful-thinkers here. However,

2. The left hand of Cap Metro thinks that many people who aren't willing to ride the direct express buses today will ride shuttle buses from the train station to their destination (and once again on the way back). Meanwhile,

3. The right hand of Cap Metro knows they won't - and has projected ridership at 1500/day (about 10% of what the 2000 projections were for light rail; about 5% of what the most recent LRT systems have been able to pull off in year one).
Reply With Quote
     
     
This discussion thread continues

Use the page links to the lower-right to go to the next page for additional posts
 
 
Reply

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > United States > Texas & Southcentral > Austin
Forum Jump


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 1:42 PM.

     

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.