Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2006 We Need Mass Transit Now! Previous Next
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Drdetroit
Member
Username: Drdetroit

Post Number: 37
Registered: 04-2006
Posted From: 69.219.20.60
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 10:24 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Why doe's the media let L Brooks Patterson think he is GOD on this issue? Why cant we vote on mass transit? I believe the federal govt would subsidize over 50% of start up cost if the region would just say yes. With all of the money that we blow on un-needed items ( cigarettes, casino, beer, etc.... would you vote for a 2 cents raise in sales tax to fund mass transit? Gas prices are starting to kick my butt!!!
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Lowell
Board Administrator
Username: Lowell

Post Number: 2492
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 66.167.210.27
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 10:41 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I can understand your frustration, but what do you mean by mass transit? Some will argue we have it, even if lame, with SMART / DDOT. If you put it to a vote, it would probably get killed. If you offer it without defining it, it would not even get to a vote. You will find reams of discussion about this in the forum archives.

Today I heard that the state handed out $40 to GM to keep this or that autmomotive facility here. [yawn] That kind of money gets passed out like peanuts and the public accepts it like the sun rising and setting.

"Oh that's to save / keep jobs," many will say. But how many jobs woudl $40 million into a mass transit program save or create? Regrettably little will happen until metropolitan consensus is achieved and with obstructionist like L. Brooks Patterson, the prospects remain bleak.
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Livernoisyard
Member
Username: Livernoisyard

Post Number: 438
Registered: 10-2004
Posted From: 69.242.223.42
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 10:45 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"Why doe's the media let L Brooks Patterson think he is GOD on this issue? Why cant we vote on mass transit? I believe the federal govt would subsidize over 50% of start up cost if the region would just say yes. With all of the money that we blow on un-needed items ( cigarettes, casino, beer, etc.... would you vote for a 2 cents raise in sales tax to fund mass transit? Gas prices are starting to kick my butt!!!"

Yeah! Why doe's he? Why cant we rid ourselves of un-needed hyphens, too? And OK on all that "free" federal govt money for start-up costs. Amen!

Just my two cent...

(Message edited by LivernoisYard on April 19, 2006)
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Jsmyers
Member
Username: Jsmyers

Post Number: 1624
Registered: 12-2003
Posted From: 209.131.7.68
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 10:56 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

If you put it to a vote, it would probably get killed.



It depends on the question being voted on, but I doubt that.

From what I've seen and read, a majority of citizens in this region know we need better transit. There isn't as much agreement on what that means nor how to get there however.
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Ltorivia485
Member
Username: Ltorivia485

Post Number: 2547
Registered: 08-2004
Posted From: 199.74.87.98
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:30 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Don't dare get light rail. They need diesel fuel to run too. The gas prices are through the roof. Monorail will be cheaper to run.
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Eric_c
Member
Username: Eric_c

Post Number: 703
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 68.76.202.10
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:33 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Electric Streetcars.
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Jsmyers
Member
Username: Jsmyers

Post Number: 1625
Registered: 12-2003
Posted From: 209.131.7.68
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:34 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

Don't dare get light rail. They need diesel fuel to run too.



Wrong. The vast majority of LRT systems run on electricity just like most monorails.

quote:

Monorail will be cheaper to run.



Lets see what the planners and engineers come up with when they run the numbers.
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Eric_c
Member
Username: Eric_c

Post Number: 704
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 68.76.202.10
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:35 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Electric Streetcars. Start there.
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Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 7206
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 198.208.159.18
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:41 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jet packs for all!!
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Tetsua
Member
Username: Tetsua

Post Number: 573
Registered: 01-2004
Posted From: 68.42.76.157
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:51 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

Jet packs for all!!




Jet packs use gas too. :-)
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Wazootyman
Member
Username: Wazootyman

Post Number: 42
Registered: 02-2006
Posted From: 68.75.220.9
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:55 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

As if the rates for electricity aren't rising as well...

Personally I know that unless a transit system were to run within a few blocks of my house and within reasonable walking distance of my job (in a business park set back a great distance from the main road), I wouldn't ride it. I suspect a majority of the people in the area would have the same issue. We're too spread out.
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Marcnbyr
Member
Username: Marcnbyr

Post Number: 650
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 68.43.13.13
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 11:59 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"Jet packs use gas too"


Not if they're solar powered....
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Jsmyers
Member
Username: Jsmyers

Post Number: 1626
Registered: 12-2003
Posted From: 209.131.7.68
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 12:20 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

We're too spread out.



One of the major purposes of transit is to reduce this trend over time.

That said, we actually aren't that spread out. There are some huge concentrations of employment in areas right next to or on possilbe transit corridors. For example

Downtown Detroit
New Center Detroit
WSU
Med Center
UofM and Hospital
EMU
ST. Joe's Hospital
Dearborn/Fairlane Edge City
Big Beaver/I-75 Edge City
Southfield Edge City
Pontiac
Van Dyke Industrial Corridor (including GM Tech Center)

There are also a lot of people living close by these corridors, but people move more often than jobs, so over time, many people will move into new housing construction spurred by transit investments.
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Upinottawa
Member
Username: Upinottawa

Post Number: 302
Registered: 09-2005
Posted From: 198.103.184.76
Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 - 12:31 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Transit spurs development: just ask Toronto and Portland.

Ottawa is building a huge light rail line to augment its bus rapid transit system. Check it out: http://www.ottawa.ca/residents /lrt/index_en.shtml
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Rocket_city
Member
Username: Rocket_city

Post Number: 1
Registered: 04-2006
Posted From: 141.217.214.203
Posted on Thursday, April 20, 2006 - 2:29 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

re: the quote that "we're too spread out."

This is probably the largest misconception when it comes to regional mass transit in any region. If anyone is ever faced with this argument, here's my advice as a rebuttal:

The city of Atlanta, Georgia and the city of Detroit, Michigan are approximately the same size geographically (132 vs 139 sq miles) respectively. But Detroit's population density (persons per square mile) is about 6,400 while Atlanta is roughly half that at 3,200. The numbers would start to fluctuate as you compare metropolitan numbers.

Now, if Atlanta and MARTA can support HEAVY rail through an urban core 1/2 as dense as Detroit, I think we have quite an advantage in countering the argument that we are too spread out here. And look at how central Atlanta is booming with economic development on every corner. On the flip side, Detroit's economic development is punctuated by the next largest parking garage to accomodate a small, quaint loft rehab. Which is great and all, but I think it's time to up the standards...a lot!

The thing I've always advocated for first and foremost for SE MICH to take transportation here seriously is the formulation of ONE authority, ie SEMTA or DARTA. There's no need for two, which is why our efforts fail every time. Once this is done, then we can confidently proceed...to succeed.

We don't need heavy subway rail like Atlanta has, but we do need efficient, environmentally-friendly rail that will take passengers through focal corridors. Not only will this effort rebuild and sustain commerce in Transit-Oriented Nodal Development, it will repopulate surrounding areas by injecting design standards that are highly desirable to live in and that can only be found near public transit lines (bus included).

So, mystery solved: You can build transit where we spread out. So long as you have a long-range plan to build INTO the system in order to maximize its efficiency, sustainability, and usage. A prime example to research is that of Greater Denver. Denver's suburbs (that traditionally have sprawled) are becoming among the densest, yet highly desirable to live in in America. We have to start selling the idea of "density" as not necessarily meaning people living on top of one another, but rather close enough to allow for efficiency of living conditions and future cohesion rather than future death by way of economically depressed sprawl.
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Eric_c
Member
Username: Eric_c

Post Number: 708
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 68.76.202.10
Posted on Thursday, April 20, 2006 - 2:53 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thank-you Rocket, and welcome. I completely agree with your angle.

I've posted my thoughts on this subject several times now and never get any bites. Here's what I posted a few months ago:

I believe that practical, efficient mass transit throughout Metro-Detroit would enhance the current state of the region, PROVIDED the system's right-of-ways are conceived from the onset as development engines for new urban commuter corridors. A Detroit-area rapid transit system, with few exceptions, would not necessarily do well to try to mimic current auto routes. Instead, residents and community leaders would be wise to view the development of such a system as a way to promote brand-new economic development in underutilized areas throughout the region. Public investment in a properly planned and executed network of transit AND appropriate zoning could credibly enhance Southeastern Michigan's economy by creating opportunities for private investment in areas where there are currently, seemingly few.

I see the return of streetcars to Woodward Avenue as the initial step toward the realization of a true regional transit system and the development of urban commuter corridors. Woodward stands out as the most logical place to institute such a line as it lends itself almost immediately to transits' highest and best use. At once, the urban density of the corridor combined with the current level of disinvestment indicates that a strategy of public commitment to attract private capital to the area would yield the greatest potential return.

In the form of a dedicated streetcar line, even if initially limited to between Campus Martius and the Boulevard, this public commitment would increase the value of property throughout the corridor. A transit line would promote in-fill and spin-off developments, increase the desireabilty of the route as a place to live and conduct business, as well as provide a practical means of commuting (even if only initially) between Downtown, Midtown and New Center.

It is my contention that traditional streetcars are the mode of transportation best suited to Woodward Avenue and the other radials, particularly in the CBD. Streetcars would be ideal along these routes because the overall scale of the street allows for their efficient function. I wouldn't advocate "station stops" or fifty-mile-per-hour vehicles - especially between Downtown and New Center. By the same token, I wouldn't consider old-fashioned streetcars on Big Beaver or Wayne Roads, either! Streetcars offer affordable, comfortable, quiet transportation along a permanent route. Stops do not need to be elaborate structures, and wheelchair access is not a problem on modern vehicles.

The metro area will have some type of improved transit sooner or later, but I also believe that the area has sprawled out too far from the core to make any ONE model practical on a regional level. Regardless, we would be best served by building a permanent system that keeps as it's purpose the stabilization of existing areas and the sensible pioneering of new growth in previously-undeveloped or less-desireable sections of the metro. A Woodward streetcar line, as an example, would do both.
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Naturalsister
Member
Username: Naturalsister

Post Number: 597
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 68.255.236.166
Posted on Thursday, April 20, 2006 - 5:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I have two words to say and two words only:

Rocket City.

later - naturalsister
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Rocket_city
Member
Username: Rocket_city

Post Number: 6
Registered: 04-2006
Posted From: 141.217.214.203
Posted on Thursday, April 20, 2006 - 5:28 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I hope that's a good thing. Thank you both. :-)
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Danny
Member
Username: Danny

Post Number: 3993
Registered: 02-2004
Posted From: 141.217.174.235
Posted on Thursday, April 20, 2006 - 5:30 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

DARTA IS DEAD!! Thus sayeth Freeman Hendrix.
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Drdetroit
Member
Username: Drdetroit

Post Number: 43
Registered: 04-2006
Posted From: 69.246.2.240
Posted on Thursday, April 20, 2006 - 5:51 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Danny - Hendrix said kwayme was dead.
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Ltorivia485
Member
Username: Ltorivia485

Post Number: 2574
Registered: 08-2004
Posted From: 129.105.104.173
Posted on Thursday, April 20, 2006 - 5:54 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I am against electric streetcars if there are wires hanging in the air AND it blocks the right of way of street corners. I can already imagine the accidents where storms knock out power lines or it involves oversized vehicles, such as semi-trucks. Mass transit should not be on the same grade level as regular traffic. That's why NYC and Chicago is so efficient (and sometimes quicker).

(Message edited by ltorivia485 on April 20, 2006)

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