Originally Posted by emge
I highly doubt LRT will ever include any in-campus stops, for speed factors alone. The proposed route also includes it going straight along Main, not into campus at all.
This is to preserve the speed of light rail itself - if it goes through Mac, it will slow down the entire route, especially past McMaster, or those waiting for it to loop around and come back. LRT needs to be fast, fast, fast, especially for students coming from farther away, or non-students whose destination is past McMaster, or those going downtown from Dundas via the LRT.
On the one hand, it does make it tougher to get to campus to take the buses out entirely. I don't like that idea. On the other hand, other schools have long walks involved and are well-serviced by transit at their perimeters, and people get along fine. Once the initial whining and complaining pass, people will still get there in time. It's still a far shorter walk than parking in most peripheral lots at Mac.
I think I come out opposite to you in this because of that: LRT shouldn't be slowed down to stop people from walking an extra few minutes... but preserving a bus service into campus for local students who don't want to walk won't affect the pedestrian-friendliness of the campus at all.
That's a good point because having the LRT on-campus would be somewhat of a detour that would slow down the speed of the line. While I wasn't suggesting that having LRT stops through campus should be used by students just trying to get across campus, but rather to provide easy access to students travelling to class from farther away (ie. downtown), unfortunately the former would likely be unavoidable, especially in bad weather... so yes, it would significantly slow down the service just to benefit a few.
As for taking the buses off-campus, I didn't realize they would be constructing a new terminal and so if the buses stop at the new terminal in front of MUMC and then again at Forsyth & Sterling it really isn't too bad at all. For some reason I had imagined the buses not entering campus at all, but if they just go around the perimeter on Forysth that'll be almost as good as going through campus. Hopefully the new bus stop/ terminal by MUMC will accompanied by an improved pedestrian crosswalk to accommodate the significant amount of students that will be crossing Forsyth and heading up University Ave.
The one idea that I do not fully understand is how the removal of buses will make the campus significantly more pedestrian friendly (aside from the obvious - less traffic). The roads that the buses currently use through campus cannot be removed when they are no longer used by buses because they are still essential for delivery trucks, campus security, emergency vehicles, etc. so its not like they could replace them with a giant pedestrian/ cyclist walkway across campus. If anything, the removal of buses passing through campus may result in increased danger as pedestrians will be less aware when crossing the road without a steady flow of buses to have to watch out for.