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  #1  
Old Posted Nov 27, 2006, 7:21 AM
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ATLANTA TRANSIT (Marta, Beltline, Peachtree Streetcar, LovJoy Commuter, etc...)

I wanted to know how others view the plans for the future rail developments in Atlanta... Please provide your opinions and inputs...


First: PEACHTREE STREETCARS

I LOVE the idea for a streetcar along the Peachtree corridor, but I think that the proposed plans could use a little work.

Here's the proposed streetcar system:


The plans still don't involve service to the South East region where Turner Field, Capitol Gateway, Zoo Atlanta, Grant Park and Glenwood Village are located.

Here's what I propose that the streetcar system should look like:

I understand that it may be a bit of a stretch to complete my plans, but if anything there should at a minimum be service to the Abernathy-Turner Field-Zoo Atlanta Corridor.

Videos
http://www.atlantastreetcar.org/pres...finalpiece.wmv

Links
http://www.atlantastreetcar.com/index.cfm


2nd: PEDESTRIAN CORRIDOR ON PEACHTREE

Notice that on my map, I placed a pedestrian only (with Streetcar) zone along Peachtree between North Avenue and The Woodruff Arts Center.
Does anyone besides me believe that this is possible?

I took a trip to Denver and saw their 16th Street Mall. It is a mile long stretch of pedestrian road serviced by FREE electric buses. It's the center of the city life. The street is lined with restaurants, retail, nightclubs, hotels, gift shops and a mall. Very inviting. What's most interesting is that at one time, 16th Steet was automobile traffic. It's not quite Denver's Peachtree, but it's not far from it. It was a major traffic artery through the center of downtown and now it's THE SPOT to hang out. Could this be accomplished on Midtown's Peachtree? If not on Peachtree, can it be accomplished on another street? Piedmont, Juniper, Courtland (Downtown), Peachtree Center Ave., Fairlie, Poplar...

Denver's 16th Street Mall:


Santa Monica's 3rd Street Promenade:


Links
http://www.hellocoloradosprings.com/...16thstreet.htm
http://www.16thstreetmall.denverfanatic.com/


3rd: NoGA RAIL SYSTEM and LOVEJOY COMMUTER RAIL

I really like the plans for a Massive North GA Commuter Rail System.

Proposed Atlanta - Athens Commuter



Proposed NoGA Commuter System with LoveJoy Commuter Rail


Links
http://www.atlantadowntown.com/Plans...20Proposal.pdf
http://www.garail.com/Pages/pdf/2006athensfactsheet.pdf


4th: GA HIGH SPEED RAIL SYSTEM & INTERCITY RAIL

I think that this is VERY interesting... If they pull this off, I will be VERY surprised and HIGHLY impressed. High speed train from ATL - Savannah... Wow... From GA Aquarium to Tennessee Aquarium... Sounds GREAT...


Links
www.sehsr.org/


5th: THE ATLANTA BELTLINE

I LOVE this idea, but what is holding up the progress?


Videos
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGb_P5NCgE0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZd3QnHtJ5Y

Links
www.beltline.org/
www.beltlinecommunity.com/


6th: ATLANTA HARTSFIELD-JACKSON INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
wow, that's a lot to say...

When is the airport going to do an overhaul on it's concourses. It's LONG overdue. The Concourse NEED a LOT of work for them to look like a world class airport. To be the busiest airport on Earth, it sure doesn't look like it while walking to your gate. They could just raise the roofs of all the concourses (maybe even add a second level for people movers) and top them with glass to give the feel of sky and space. They need to take a look at some other airports (Chicago O'Hare, Denver, DC Reagan, etc..) and get busy catching up with the times.

Links
http://www.atlanta-airport.com/
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  #2  
Old Posted Nov 27, 2006, 7:35 AM
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Psykomonkee Psykomonkee is offline
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Some artist renderings of what a streetcar my look like in Atlanta
Which one is your favorite?

Streetcar #1


Streetcar #2


Streetcar #3


Streetcar #4


Streetcar #5


Streetcar #3


Streetcar #6


Streetcar #5


Streetcar #7


My favorite is Streetcar #7 or Streetcar #2

Last edited by Psykomonkee; Nov 27, 2006 at 7:52 AM.
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  #3  
Old Posted Nov 27, 2006, 7:36 AM
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Here are some pics of Lightrails and streetcars from other cities...
Post which ones are your favorites. Which one would you like to see in Atlanta?

PORTLAND


SYDNEY


BALTIMORE


MILAN


SAN FRANCISCO (MUNI)


BORDEAUX


DENVER


ATHENS


BUDAPEST


BARCELONA


SAN DIEGO


HOUSTON


ROMA


NEW ORLEANS


I like the ones that are low to the ground. They may be slower, but a like on Peachtree should have many many stops (no need for speed), and many pedestrians to watch out for until it leaves the Downtown and Midtown areas.

Last edited by Psykomonkee; Nov 27, 2006 at 8:04 AM.
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  #4  
Old Posted Nov 27, 2006, 1:49 PM
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I prefer the modern trams, I just hope that the windows open. In Milan, there has been a huge backlash agains the new, sleek ones because the windows are sealed and people don't like it.
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How about this for the city's slogan:

"Atlanta - it's getting there."
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  #5  
Old Posted Nov 27, 2006, 9:25 PM
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Where is exactly in New Orleans does that run? New Orleans only has single car street car systems - currently three routes.

As for the original options, I like # 7.
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  #6  
Old Posted Nov 27, 2006, 10:12 PM
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I would prefer the styles of #3, 6, and 7. Red and Silver are both pleasing colors. Hopefully if it happens it wont be Peach colored.
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  #7  
Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 1:51 AM
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Speaking of transit, I sold my gas guzzling car over the weekend and am now officially relying on MARTA as my primary method of transportation.
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  #8  
Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 2:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason21atl
Speaking of transit, I sold my gas guzzling car over the weekend and am now officially relying on MARTA as my primary method of transportation.
Welcome to the club!
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How about this for the city's slogan:

"Atlanta - it's getting there."
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  #9  
Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 2:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Terminus
Welcome to the club!
So, with you two, Wendy, and myself, that's at least one in a million in metro Atlanta who are car free.

Watch out drivers, the revolution is coming!
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  #10  
Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 4:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason21atl
Speaking of transit, I sold my gas guzzling car over the weekend and am now officially relying on MARTA as my primary method of transportation.
It's a good thing that more people are using mass transit system. Once MARTA is over crowded, new systems will be considered. When MARTA is under loaded, there is no need for any addition.
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  #11  
Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 7:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CityFan
It's a good thing that more people are using mass transit system. Once MARTA is over crowded, new systems will be considered. When MARTA is under loaded, there is no need for any addition.
You say that there's no need for any addition until MARTA is overcrowded, but people won't crowd MARTA if it doesn't make any additions... If MARTA isn't getting the average person where they need to and want to go, they won't ride.

That is the primary reason why traffic is as bad as it is now. MARTA just isn't getting the average commuter where they need to go in a reasonable time. The majority of Atlantans are not from Atlanta. They are usually from various larger cities (mainly New York, Chicago and DC). That means that most new Atlantans come from a place where they don't need a car and would most likely love to commute without an automobile, but MARTA just isn't doing the job for them.

I understand that MARTA has for years been against a few brick walls unable to gain public support for expanding into the Clayton Co., Cobb Co. and Gwinnett Co suburbs but that is not all they can do as far as expansion.

What about the rest of Atlanta CITY that is not being covered by rail service. Not EVERYONE works along the Peachtree corridor. Infact, most Atlantans DON'T work along the MARTA system. In Manhattan, DC and Chicago, stations are placed strategically so that you are within walking distance of a station as long as you are anywhere in the city center.

People would like to be able to WALK (not depend on the inefficient bus service) from a nearby trainstation to places like Fernbank, Stone Mountain park, Zoo Atlanta, King Plow Arts Center, Six Flags, Emory University and CDC, Cumberland/Galleria area, Lithonia, Virginia Highlands, The Vinings, the list goes on... If MARTA ran into the county line walls years ago, they should have started improving the rail system in the city's center.

"If you build it, they will come..." That saying is SO true. If MARTA wants ridership, they need to first expand rail system coverage. Not wait until people get out of their cars to expand, because that just won't happen.

If you take a look at this map of Atlanta, you'll notice that the railway does already exist if MARTA wanted to build stations and place trains that would service the North Western and South Eastern neighborhoods. Maybe even to Stone Mountain:


MARTA needs to grow a pair, take a chance and spend the money (an investment) to first build it, then the riders will come.
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  #12  
Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 2:53 PM
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Call me crazy but I think it takes a little more than balls to fund a mass transit system.

While I personally really like MARTA and think it gets a uneccessarily bad rap, I think rather than trying to expand it now, it's a better idea to support the Beltline. Not necessarily because it's so much better, but because it's transit free of MARTA's stigma and therefore something the public can legitimately rally behind and support with dollars. That last part is, you know, important. This town likes a winner and right now the winner is not MARTA no matter how much I want it to be.

Speaking of winners, hey check out the Wren's Nest on that map of yours! Booya.
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  #13  
Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 3:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psykomonkee
If you take a look at this map of Atlanta, you'll notice that the railway does already exist if MARTA wanted to build stations and place trains that would service the North Western and South Eastern neighborhoods. Maybe even to Stone Mountain:
You are either very new and very astute to figure this out. Or your just not paying attention. What you have described is being looked at:

As you have correctly stated, there is a fairly extensive rail network in and around Atlanta. (See below)


Some at the DOT have been trying to leverage this into a comprehensive Commuter Rail network for years:


A visionary grad student at Georgia Tech looked at the rail lines in Atlanta and came up with this concept:


Some business interests have also been pushing another concept that doesn't necessarily use the rail network, but it would enhance transit options:


If you overlay these and a few other concepts, you get a fairly comprehensive transit system:


So there are some pretty gutsy proposals out there. Now, whose going to pay for these?
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Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 4:04 PM
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If the state was equal in how they spent transportation funds, they would have to pay most of the cost of transit. Here is how the state pays for roads, along with other southern states:


The red area is what is covered by the gas tax. Notice in Georgia it is almost nothing. Most of the cost is paid for either by local funds (SPLOST, property taxes, county general fund) or state general funds (state property tax, state income tax, etc.). This is what makes me laugh when people say transit should pay for itself because roads do through gas taxes.
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Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 5:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psykomonkee
You say that there's no need for any addition until MARTA is overcrowded, but people won't crowd MARTA if it doesn't make any additions... If MARTA isn't getting the average person where they need to and want to go, they won't ride.

That is the primary reason why traffic is as bad as it is now. MARTA just isn't getting the average commuter where they need to go in a reasonable time. The majority of Atlantans are not from Atlanta. They are usually from various larger cities (mainly New York, Chicago and DC). That means that most new Atlantans come from a place where they don't need a car and would most likely love to commute without an automobile, but MARTA just isn't doing the job for them.

I understand that MARTA has for years been against a few brick walls unable to gain public support for expanding into the Clayton Co., Cobb Co. and Gwinnett Co suburbs but that is not all they can do as far as expansion.

What about the rest of Atlanta CITY that is not being covered by rail service. Not EVERYONE works along the Peachtree corridor. Infact, most Atlantans DON'T work along the MARTA system. In Manhattan, DC and Chicago, stations are placed strategically so that you are within walking distance of a station as long as you are anywhere in the city center.

People would like to be able to WALK (not depend on the inefficient bus service) from a nearby trainstation to places like Fernbank, Stone Mountain park, Zoo Atlanta, King Plow Arts Center, Six Flags, Emory University and CDC, Cumberland/Galleria area, Lithonia, Virginia Highlands, The Vinings, the list goes on... If MARTA ran into the county line walls years ago, they should have started improving the rail system in the city's center.

"If you build it, they will come..." That saying is SO true. If MARTA wants ridership, they need to first expand rail system coverage. Not wait until people get out of their cars to expand, because that just won't happen.

If you take a look at this map of Atlanta, you'll notice that the railway does already exist if MARTA wanted to build stations and place trains that would service the North Western and South Eastern neighborhoods. Maybe even to Stone Mountain:


MARTA needs to grow a pair, take a chance and spend the money (an investment) to first build it, then the riders will come.
It's not like people haven't been saying this for years. But when you have a pro-road governor with enough people supporting him, all these ideas go nowhere. But hopefully at some point in the future people will begin to realize that you can't build your way out of congestion and will be more willing to support transit. Shirley Franklin sees this and has been pushing for the beltline and streetcar. Cobb County is beginning to see this and is FINALLY agreeing to work with MARTA. My biggest gripe though is why hasn't GRTA gotten anything accomplished except nice looking buses on new bus routes? I mean they're supposed to be in charge of regional transportation and have the ability to issue bonds etc. so they certainly have the power to get things accomplished. I guess one thing you can always depend on is inefficient government bureaucracy!
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Old Posted Nov 28, 2006, 5:58 PM
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Rob - GRTA can't achieve too much with Sonny-Bubba at the helm of the government.

I am VERY worried about the next four years. If we don't get moving soon, it may be too late by the time we get real leadership.
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  #17  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2006, 1:33 AM
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I'd rather see Atlanta and suburbs focus on surface street improvements, which are badly needed.
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Old Posted Nov 29, 2006, 5:23 AM
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Surface street improvements? Give me a break - Atlanta has some of the best roads in the world. Maybe I just happen to travel where all the roads are constantly repaved because I think we're way ahead of the curve on road quality.
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  #19  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2006, 5:46 AM
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I'm speaking of, for example, Howell Mill, Northside Drive, MLK, Ponce, Cleveland Avenue, parts of Marietta Street north of the COP area, quite a few major cross streets, etc. The main problem is not paving, but rather broken up sidewalks, sad looking curbing, unsynchronized traffic signals, and unanesthetic streetscapes. These problems quite often extend out into suburbia.

The deferred maintenance probably runs into the hundreds of millions. I'd like to see some more street sweepers purchased, and mowing of rights of way where applicable. The comment was made by an out-of-town visitor that, judging from the streets, Atlanta is a "lazy city".

This sort of stuff could be done without much public discussion or controversy....just do it.
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Old Posted Nov 29, 2006, 2:36 PM
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Well unfortunately no matter how pretty we make our streets, they'll still be as congested as they were before. I am all for streetscape improvements, but I think there's bigger transportation issues to address at this point.
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