The article above is not about that, though. While it’s even better when elevated roadways are taken down, like they did with the old Central Artery and are planning to do with the McGrath Highway (not to mention many others including OKC’s Crosstown), this at least makes them less ugly and/or scary. That’s a good thing, IMHO.
Jaffe plows no new ground here and, in fact, points to a Walkerarticle that I blogged about the other week that makes some of the same points.
His use of headways to determine transit-worthiness might be a little harsh given that a lot of transit systems don’t have that many buses per hour. Walker says it all the time: “Frequency is Freedom”.
I am really afraid that the OKC Streetcar that is still (forever?) in the planning stages will end up as decoration in the city and not useful transit. Don’t know the proposed headway, but bet it falls short of 4 or 5 cars/hour.
The author learns what many of us already knew: NYC, especially in terms of transit use, is so far out of scale with the rest of the country that it’s almost meaningless to include them in studies like this. I’ve talked about this before. Just leave NYC out and then you can say something about the rest of … whatever you’re talking about.
Another on the Texas passenger train idea. I’ve had this in the buffer for a while and just noticed it again now.
Two quotes amuse me:
“[…] this latest plan to make passenger rail work in highway-loving Texas.”
“Highway-loving Texas.” Let’s see what there is for them to love.
There are several thousand miles of expressway in Texas, most of which can be used at no direct cost to the user, 24 hours per day, every day of the year.
There are three intercity trains in Texas. One of the trains runs from Chicago to San Antonio via Longview, Dallas, and Ft Worth once per day in each direction. Three days a week, you can connect in San Antonio with a train that makes it’s way from New Orleans to Los Angeles via Houston, San Antonio, and El Paso. There is another daily train that connects at Ft Worth for Norman and OKC.
So if a Texan wanted to love a train instead, they wouldn’t have much opportunity, would they? I maintain that so many people drive in Texas because they have no other rational choice. The same is true in most of the rest of the country, of course.
The other is this:
““It is, at the moment, considered to be a 100 percent privately financed venture, so in some respects, we may be limited to what our authority is,” [NTCOG senior program manager Tom] Shelton said.”
It’s a 100% privately financed venture as someone just said. What makes government officials think they have any authority? Yes, there are land-use regulations through which they can exercise some control, but if the company thinks it will make more sense to have a station in Waxahachie instead of Ft Worth, then that’s where they’re going to put their station.