Discuss Detroit Archives - January 2008 Light rail Previous Next
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Diggelicious
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Username: Diggelicious

Post Number: 69
Registered: 08-2005
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 7:11 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

And here comes the now famous "Light Rail"/Mass transit thread that is almost synonymous with DetroitYes...
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Detroitrise
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Username: Detroitrise

Post Number: 1013
Registered: 09-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 7:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wow, that is such an excellent idea! Genius! I don't believe anyone else in this region has thought of it or tried to implement it with the funds coming from the hidden money tree.
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Mwilbert
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Username: Mwilbert

Post Number: 26
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 7:49 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Very likely Detroit should not have gotten rid of the streetcars. However, they did. Unfortunately you can't pay for a new system with possible future benefits.

I strongly believe light rail should be built up Woodward as far as New Center. I would like to see some solid justification for building it farther, especially since there is heavy rail running from there to Pontiac.
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Lifeinmontage
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Username: Lifeinmontage

Post Number: 49
Registered: 10-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 7:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Apparently it does take a genius. The DPM currently runs at 10% of its capacity. The city of Detroit and state of Michigan spend $8.3M annually to keep it running despite this (gross income - costs of operation = -8.3M).

It will not "pay for itself".

Source for the numbers (1/3 of the way down in the article):

http://www.detnews.com/apps/pb cs.dll/article?AID=/20061223/M ETRO/612230387
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Lifeinmontage
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Username: Lifeinmontage

Post Number: 50
Registered: 10-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 7:53 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

By the way, I am a huge proponent of mass transit. But an extension of the DPM is not the way to go.
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Mwilbert
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Username: Mwilbert

Post Number: 27
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 8:10 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Just to be clear, pretty much no transit system "pays for itself" in the sense of taking in enough money in fares to pay for its operation, much less its capital costs. There is no possibility any rail system in Detroit would do so either.

When someone says a transit system would pay for itself, they have to be including promotion of adjoining development or encouragement of tourism or convention business or similar kinds of benefits, or they are badly mistaken.

(Message edited by mwilbert on December 08, 2007)
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Danindc
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Username: Danindc

Post Number: 3801
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 8:48 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

Very likely Detroit should not have gotten rid of the streetcars. However, they did. Unfortunately you can't pay for a new system with possible future benefits.



Actually, you can. It's call "Tax Increment Financing".
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Swede1934
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Username: Swede1934

Post Number: 33
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 9:09 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The sad point is that the city NEVER purchased enough vehicles to maintain the streetcar system. They were too much set on the idea of totally bussing the system. Now you taxpayers are saddled with paying to replace what was already there.
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Mwilbert
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Username: Mwilbert

Post Number: 28
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 08, 2007 - 10:32 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Of course, Danindc is right about TIF.

But seriously, I would assume that you could never raise enough with TIF to pay for building the line, and even if you could then the city would have to assume the inevitable operating deficit while the offsetting tax benefit is paying off the capital costs.

I may be wrong, but the only way I can see this happening is if there is Federal money for a big chunk of the construction cost, and then TIF could be used to cover the city's share of the costs.

I read a while ago that some people in the Legislature were looking at funding a study of light rail on Woodward--has anything come of that?
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Charlottepaul
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Username: Charlottepaul

Post Number: 2106
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 7:03 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"Unfortunately you can't pay for a new system with possible future benefits."

Why not? People buy stock. Loans are issued for people to buy homes. Bonds are issued for cities to build infrastructure. It is done all of the time at all levels.
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Fnemecek
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Username: Fnemecek

Post Number: 2655
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 7:15 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

By the way, I am a huge proponent of mass transit. But an extension of the DPM is not the way to go.


DPM is not light rail.
quote:

Just to be clear, pretty much no transit system "pays for itself" in the sense of taking in enough money in fares to pay for its operation, much less its capital costs.


Minor correction: Dublin, Ireland has a mass transit system that pays for itself out of fares. That, however, is the only one that know of. Even NYC requires subsidy for its mass transit.
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Hans57
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Username: Hans57

Post Number: 239
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 7:17 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Tokyo's also pays for itself.
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Bw7085
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Username: Bw7085

Post Number: 12
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 8:08 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:
Just to be clear, pretty much no transit system "pays for itself" in the sense of taking in enough money in fares to pay for its operation, much less its capital costs


During the first forty years of operation, the DSR (Department of street railways) operated solely out of the fare-box only.
http://www.detroittransithisto ry.info/DDOT/DDOTHistory.html
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Lefty2
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Username: Lefty2

Post Number: 739
Registered: 07-2007
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 8:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

So the annual cost per rider per year would be = to what?, including debt repayment and Op. Expenses?
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Patrick
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Username: Patrick

Post Number: 5231
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 8:20 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Guys, forget it, it's never gonna happen.
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Cinderpath
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Username: Cinderpath

Post Number: 328
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 8:53 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Metro Detroit has a mass transit system that pays for itself. It moves more then 99 percent of the workers to their jobs. It's called the free enterprise system, which includes the automobile.

-I didn't know the "Free Enterprise System" built highways? I thought governments did. And why do they use so much taxpayer money to fix them if they are supposedly self financed? Please enlighten us.

(Message edited by Cinderpath on December 09, 2007)
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Trainman
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Username: Trainman

Post Number: 587
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 10:10 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The fuel tax is a user fee and the property tax is a non-user fee.
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Cinderpath
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Username: Cinderpath

Post Number: 331
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Sunday, December 09, 2007 - 11:15 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The fuel tax is a user fee and the property tax is a non-user fee.

-The problem is that fuel taxes do not pay for all associated highway cost. For example when local police patrol a highway, fuel tax does not pay for this. Additionally fuel taxes do not pay entirely for construction cost of highways, these are often taken out of general funds, like the proposed "Bridge to nowhere" and big dig in Boston.

ALL forms of transportation are subsidized in one way or another.
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Focusonthed
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Username: Focusonthed

Post Number: 1521
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007 - 12:33 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Don't bother arguing with Trainman.
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Fnemecek
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Username: Fnemecek

Post Number: 2658
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007 - 12:40 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

Guys, forget it, it's never gonna happen.


Once upon a time, a guy named Lyndon Baines Johnson said that the Voting Rights Act would never happen. He was wrong, too.

Sooner or later, voters will decide that they like saving money.
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Iheartthed
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Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 2335
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007 - 10:06 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

That, however, is the only one that know of. Even NYC requires subsidy for its mass transit.



Actually, the subway system pays for itself. It's the bus component that requires the subsidy......
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Johnlodge
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Username: Johnlodge

Post Number: 4088
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007 - 10:23 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)





:-)
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Bearinabox
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Username: Bearinabox

Post Number: 437
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007 - 11:58 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

^What does that route do between 11 and 12 Mile? I can't think of a street in that area that cuts in that direction. Other than that, build it and you've got at least one guaranteed regular user.
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Focusonthed
Member
Username: Focusonthed

Post Number: 1522
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007 - 2:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That's probably following Sherman. It's not exact in his drawing, but Sherman does exactly that.

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