Originally Posted by Policy Wonk
After more than a year of this you continue to belligerently ignore the point, once an 8th Street subway opens the resulting traffic on 7th with be dramatically reduced to a tempo where peak operations aren't a daily disaster. This will provide for a slightly higher frequency for the 202 but CT's rail controllers will chain themselves to the tracks before 7th Ave at grade returns to anywhere near its present day traffic.
At the present tempo a full 25% of west-bound 202's are operating more than a minute behind schedule during the morning rush, the peak headways of the combined 201 and 202 are a little more than two minutes. Can you not appreciate how this is a entirely intolerable situation out of anything other than necessity?
From 5 to 6 PM, there are 16 SB 201s and 11 EB 202s leaving City Hall station, so 26 trains. Let's assume that 25% of the 202s are late (3 trains, rounding up), and presumably 25% of the 201s are as well (4 trains). Usually, when the system is near to its' limits, a small reduction in volume provides a lot of relief; it's the inability to handle even a little bit of disruption (like an idiot holding the doors) that can propagate through the system. But let's not talk about a small reduction in volume; let's cancel all of the late trains. If the other 75% can remain on time with 25% of the trains behind schedule, surely they can do so with no trains behind schedule.
So if all of the late trains were cancelled (which is drastic, but permits a lot more slack), there would be only 19 trains in the hour, and headways a little more than three minutes. If these trains are increased to 4 cars, that's 76 train cars per hour. If we recall, the current system has 11 trains heading northeast in rush hour, with 33 cars. So a 202-only, 4 car 7th Ave has 230% of the capacity it does currently, even after radical service cuts.
Right now, the 202 catchment (north of 17th Ave, west of Stoney) is around 45 sq km of residential land. There's another 17 or so sq km in the northeast inside the ring road east of Metis (the area west of there is planned as industrial). This represents roughly 40% more land to develop, ignoring the sour gas.
For a 7th Ave tunnel to be warranted within any reasonable planning horizon (50-70 years), one (or a combination) of these scenarios need to occur:
- The existing housing stock in the northeast is radically rebuilt in a denser form, something that you are adamant is impossible along Centre St where the network structure is more supportive.
- The new residential land is redeveloped not at the 8 UPA in the bylaw, and not at the Plan-It proposed 11 UPA the developers raised holy hell over, but at something closer to 16-20 UPA.
- The 202 C-train is extended past city limits to Airdrie. For some reason.
- Per capita transit ridership doubles, for some reason. This represents 260 boardings per capita; Toronto is around 180 and New York around 195.[source]
- Calgary Transit, who is doing a pretty good job running 26 trains per hour, is incapable of running 15 trains per hour (which would still represent an 80% increase in capacity, far more than the 40% or so needed). Furthermore, despite this, there is the political will to spend billions of dollars to build a third transit tunnel downtown just to improve operations, even though it's painfully clear that in general, there is far more interest in adding new service than there is in improving the reliability of existing service. If there was this will, of course, we'd already have the 8th Ave tunnel, or at the very least, there would be a study and it would be in the budget.
I'd love to see these happen (at least 1, 2, and 4), but I'm not exactly holding my breath.