Do you buy this critique? Not sure I do.

The problems with modern roundabouts

I think this critique is based too much on aesthetics and not enough on moving people.  I’m also not convinced that rotaries are  “traffic calming”.  Certainly most of those installed in Norman have been installed for that stated purpose.  I think those fail, too.

I think that the design is intended to move people.  People may be on foot or on bicycles or in buses or automobiles, and all need to be treated with respect.

Screen Shot 2014-03-08 at 18.58.55
Okemos, Michigan

That said, there are a few things in this image that I don’t care for.   It seems to me that having the auto traffic cross the crosswalks then prepare to enter the circle is not right.  Seems to me that the crosswalk ought to be right at the point where the car has to slow anyway.  The writers seem to think this is over-engineered.  I don’t see that myself.  I think, maybe, the engineers were still automobile-centric in their thinking but I don’t see how it’s over-engineered.

I like them.  If motorists are respectful of people on foot and on bicycles, I think they are much better than an intersection with signals.  If motorists aren’t respectful, then I suppose it doesn’t matter what kind of intersection is built.

A billion here, a billion there …

At Trade Center Transit Hub, Vision Gives Way to Reality

Pretty soon, it’s real money.  The new subway station profiled above replaces the one damaged on a Tuesday morning in September a few years back.

This new station replaces a temporary station that was opened in 2003 and uses the same track layout.  The 2003 temporary station used the same track layout as the original PATH station built in 1971.  (PATH is the Port Authority Trans Hudson subway system operated by the Port Authority of NY and NJ that runs from Newark and other points in New Jersey through two different sets of tubes to several points in Lower Manhattan.  It’s not part of the NYC Transit Authority.)

The 1971 station replaced the original Hudson Terminal of the Hudson and Manhattan Railroad who opened it in 1909.  The H&M was a subsidiary of the Pennsylvania Railroad who built the line to allow passengers headed to Manhattan to connect from several main line train stations in New Jersey.  The terminal was purchased in the early 1960s by the Port Authority to be used as the site for a World Trade Center.  They bought the railroad, too.

The original Hudson Terminal had more platforms than the current station.

Cost of the stations?

1909 – $8,000,000 (at least $189M adjusted for inflation, but this number also included a huge, for the time, office complex)

1971 – $35,000,000 ($202M adjusted)

2003 – $253,000,000 ($321M, adjusted)

2014 – $3,400,000,000

Yet Another Reason why you can can’t compare anything else in the US to the New York area.