Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2006 Detroit and Articulated buses Past and Future Previous Next
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Streetrailwaymusician
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Username: Streetrailwaymusician

Post Number: 1
Registered: 12-2005
Posted From: 24.192.41.231
Posted on Tuesday, December 27, 2005 - 12:43 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Detroit's Department of Transportation (DDOT) recieved an order of 13 articulated buses back in 1989. These buses were originally intened for SEMTA, which at the time was going through many changes, reorganizing as SMART, had to refuse these coaches and thus the order was picked up by DDOT.

Unfortuantely these coaches were not always used for their full potential, but were ocassionally added to a busy route.

Their best application, where some of you may remember seeing these, was on the Crosstown 14 Route on Warren Ave, where throught the 1990s DDOT would sometimes place up to 6 of them at once on that route during weekdays.

Today all of these Articulated buses have been retired and sold (2002). However Detroit did revisit other uses for ARTICULATED coaches.

Here is a good link on some gathered information reguarding the former "Speed-Link" proposal.

http://hometown.aol.com/motranzit/page12.html

Do you think a Speed-Link or BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) would work in the city of Detroit as a light rail alternative? Or be a wasted effort as some view the people mover? A BRT system in breif invloves articulated coaches up to 2 and half times the capacity of a normal city bus, and would utilize special lanes, boarding areas, as well as rapidacceleration and de-acceleration like a subway. I personally see no "congestion" on Detroits streets as in other big cities like Chicago, D.C., etc and think that perhaps, not a speedlink, but improved bus service in other ares should be in order.

In short, Id like any opinions on weather anyone sees benefits to Articulated buses in Detroit, bus service in general, or personal accounts or opinions on the Artic-buses that Detroit had from 1989-2002 on the Crosstown. Speedlink is a whole nother relm, but utilizes artics as well.

Michael

DDOT Articulated Coach DDOT 8900 an Aticulated Coach at the Shoemaker Terminal in its last year of service.
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Danindc
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Username: Danindc

Post Number: 1142
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 67.100.158.10
Posted on Tuesday, December 27, 2005 - 3:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I'm going to ask you remove the comment on "rapid acceleration and deceleration like a subway". These characteristics have nothing to do with special lanes, or any cosmetic hoo-ha. Diesel engines are far outclassed by electrically-powered motors, and would never match those characteristics. Never mind that asphalt-on-rubber has much higher coefficients of static and kinetic friction than steel-on-steel.

This is why, no matter what the PR spin may be, BRT will never match the performance and ride comfort of light rail.
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Douglasm
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Username: Douglasm

Post Number: 459
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 66.189.188.28
Posted on Wednesday, December 28, 2005 - 6:36 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Those look an awful lot like the articulated coaches used by King County (Seattle) Metro.

The problem with dedicated bus ways is one similar to that of dedicated light rail. Where are you going to put them? Unless you're in a situation like Pittsburgh or Philly that had dedicated right of ways built 80 years ago, there's no real way to graft a light rail/bus system onto the exsisting street grid without either demolishing buildings for the right of way or somehow working them into exsisting traffic lanes. Seattle's been working on both a light rail and a monorail system for a number of years now, and they can't seem to figure out where to place it.

Personally, the flexability of a bus based transit system has it over the light rail idea, where a breakdown of 1 trainset last week in Portland tied up a whole line for most of a day.
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Danindc
Member
Username: Danindc

Post Number: 1144
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 67.100.158.10
Posted on Wednesday, December 28, 2005 - 6:46 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Detroit, however, has been blessed with numerous wide avenues, and an overabundance of available lane capacity.

Why do people think flexibility is a good idea in public transportation? Would people drive if the highways were frequently relocated?
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Jjaba
Member
Username: Jjaba

Post Number: 2921
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 192.220.139.6
Posted on Thursday, December 29, 2005 - 4:09 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

You really need volumes of traffic. Detroit could do it on Woodward Ave. if they prohibited cars and were serious with park and ride lots out of town.

As for Portland, they can't figure out how to run their light rail in bad weather. A little rain, a little ice, a little hail, a little snow, and the whole thing drops fast than the ball on New Years.
In East Multnomah County, the ice on the power lines fouls it all up, out in Gresham, Oregon.
Their system covers a 3 county area, thus Tri-Met name.
jjaba, Westsider.

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