Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2007 Bus improvments could carry more people and serve more people then LRT line. Previous Next
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Username: Miketoronto

Post Number: 488
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Saturday, February 10, 2007 - 10:01 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Following is some information from Vancouver, where Translink, the regional transit system is about to start the largest increase and expansion of bus service since the 1970's. Anyway look at the ridership stats.

I want you guys to see this, because there is always talk about LRT and stuff for Detroit.

While we all know that LRT or rapid transit will be needed for a complete transit system. I want you guys to see that some really good bus improvments could have a larger impact for Detroit transit riders at the present, to bring the bus system up to big city standards. Anyway some info from Vancouver. Check out how many more riders a day these simple bus improvments will bring. Thats more then a new LRT line in most cities. :-) Enjoy.

Eighty-seven percent of regional residents, and 92% of residents in urbanized areas, are within a 10-minute walk of a bus stop.

Bus services in total carry 675,000 customer boardings on an average weekday 73% of the total transit trips made in the region

Total bus service hours will increase by 4.8% in 2007.

A total of 64 peak buses and 166,800 annual service hours will be used to improve conventional bus service in 2007.

In 2007, TransLink proposes establishing a Frequent Transit Network (FTN). The FTN emphasizes bus transit corridors that have frequent service throughout the day. Initially, these will be corridors that have service at least every 15 minutes seven days a week.

Residents within 450 metres walk of 15min frequent transit bus routes.
2006: 625,500
2007 after service improvments: 719,800

Daily bus ridership in 2006: 696,000
Propsed daily bus ridership in 2007 after service improvments take effect: 723,000

Additional 27,000 riders a day being carried on buses after service improvments.

Overview of Translink improvments to the bus network, current and planned.

-More Bus Service
Increase regional bus service by adding 400 more buses to help meet the growing demand for transit services in the Greater Vancouver region.

-Better Service in the Metropolitan Core
Increase frequency on high demand routes in the core communities.
Introduce new routes to serve new developments in the core.

-More Service in High Demand Corridors
Expand 10-minute peak period routes to suburban municipal and regional town centres and in higher density corridors linking these centres.

-Better Regional Connections
Introduce new suburb-to-suburb links connecting Burnaby with North Vancouver, Maple Ridge with Langley via the new Fraser River Crossing, and Coquitlam with Surrey.

-New B-Line Rapid Bus
Introduce one new bus rapid transit route on a high density urban corridor.

-More Community Shuttle
Expand shuttles across the region to enhance service frequency and area coverage, and to continue to improve cost efficiency.
Provide all sub-areas of the region with Community Shuttles by 2007.


Anyway guys I think DDOT and SMART should look at this bus plan. It has great ideas that SMART and DDOT could use, like frequent service networks, etc.

(Message edited by miketoronto on February 10, 2007)

(Message edited by miketoronto on February 10, 2007)
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Username: Bob

Post Number: 1357
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Saturday, February 10, 2007 - 11:01 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Great plan but one big problem, our state and cities are broke and have no money to play for anything new.
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Username: Trainman

Post Number: 334
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 11:26 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It's time for industry to pay more. Like the new Wal-Mart store in Livonia. They are not broke. If industries cared and did more to lower the per passenger costs then a plan such as the one above would work.

I brought strong industry support for public bus service in Livonia and wrote the leaders of Wal-Mart to come to city hall and help SMART long before they came. They never answered and then completely ignored those who wanted to keep SMART when they came to speak.

Mass transit will always be a fantasy in our area for nearly everyone until we get industry support as opposed to more tax increases.
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Username: Miketoronto

Post Number: 490
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 4:13 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

But is it really going to cost that much more to provide quality transit service?????

SMART alone already recieves over $104 million a year in operating subsidy.

DDOT also recieves over $123 million a year in operating subsidy.

Together Metro Detroit spends over $225 million a year in operating subsidy for the bus system. And those numbers are a year or two old.

Translink in Vancouver spends approx $250 million a year in gov subsidy to provide transit services which includes more then just buses.

So Metro Detroit is not that far off in funding, yet you have not even half the service Vancouver has. So something is up with the amount of funding it is costing Metro Detroit to run a very low quality bus service

So WHERE is the money going in Metro Detroit?

(Message edited by miketoronto on February 11, 2007)
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Username: Jasoncw

Post Number: 339
Registered: 07-2005
Posted on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 6:06 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That's interesting.
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Username: Innovator

Post Number: 54
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 6:28 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I don't think this particular comparison is helpful. Vancouver is denser and smaller (physically and population-wise). It's not surprising that they get better service from their $250 million than we do from theirs. I think it's more interesting that having over twice the population and more area, we spend similar amounts on our mass transit system. Pretty telling priorities.
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Username: Professorscott

Post Number: 172
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Monday, February 12, 2007 - 12:29 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Our per capita expenditure on transit is by far the lowest of all regions with similar population in North America. The $250 million Vancouver spends goes much farther in a physically smaller region.

It's not the number of people that's critical, it's the size of the region. Since SMART tries to maintain some level of service everywhere on a very small budget, it can't be particularly effective anywhere.
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Username: Trainman

Post Number: 338
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Tuesday, February 13, 2007 - 9:56 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

This use of multiple tax mechanisms was rejected by SEMCOG leaders in the effort to keep SMART in Livonia. The purpose of transit funding is to more equally serve the public as a whole.

We think nothing of paying a city tax to maintain our street while the state pays for freeways.

The problem with the SMART funding is that we don't fund it the same as the roads. If we did, we would get many more riders, more federal funds and cities would be opting in and not out. With multiple tax mechanisms there is much more flexibility as to how best to our limited transportation tax dollars.

In 2002, when the SMART millage failed in Livonia due to aggressive city council members hell bent on raising taxes for the police department and of course for more pay raises, I formally proposed that we protect the SMART local and state funds permanently and to coordinate bus routes with DDOT.

But the following submitted budget was rejected by SEMCOG, SMART and the DARTA supporters.

http://savethefueltax.tripod.c om/textb.html

Livonia was the center of mass transit for western Wayne County until November 27, 2006. It was the lack of leadership and good sound economic principles that cost our region the loss of public bus service. But even with no mass transit leadership the people still prevail and want mass transit.

In the case of Livonia through is open discrimination and gross neglect. It's a fact that SMART and DDOT refused to post bus schedules along Plymouth Road or run their buses on time and this alone cost SMART the bus contract in Livonia. It's a fact that DARTA came to city hall and stated that we don't need state support and it's also a fact that DARTA openly rejected the support of industry at city hall which made people laugh. I tried to help DARTA and SMART but my efforts failed despite filling up the buses on Middlebelt Road with strong industry support.
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Username: Thecarl

Post Number: 1015
Registered: 04-2005
Posted on Tuesday, February 13, 2007 - 10:15 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

since all the automotive manufacturing jobs are moving to other states and countries anyway, the governor should make our gasoline tax the highest - or maybe the second highest - in the country. i'm really seriously thinking this could be a good idea. doing so would encourage michiganders' use of mass-transit systems - and, better yet - spur our great minds to create revolutionary efficiencies in transportation (deja vu all over again.)

(by the way, it's always been a fantasy of mine to have a train system that shuttles people and cars up north, and back again, over the weekend!)
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Username: Professorscott

Post Number: 177
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Tuesday, February 13, 2007 - 10:58 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

SEMCOG does not have the statutory authority to impose or reject a tax structure. SEMCOG is a planning and information-sharing agency.

At a high level the problem is this. Any region anywhere needs to impose taxes that exactly cover the cost of the services the citizens want. The citizens always want more services than they are willing to pay for.

We have paid, willingly or not, to create perhaps the most extensive system of freeways and highways for a region of 5 million people anywhere on Earth. We do not have the money to maintain them, nor the ever-increasing number of miles of water and sewer lines we have built to allow our 5 million people to spread out over an ever-larger physical area.

Since we have built the region in an economically unsustainable way, we are out of balance big-time with regard to taxes vs. services.

Now, if we can encourage people (not force, just encourage) to fill in the massive physical area where we already have provide roads and other infrastructure, such as Detroit and the inner suburbs which have lost population, we will approach sustainability. If we keep plowing over farm fields and extending more and more highways and infrastructure out into the rural areas, with no commensurate gain in population regionally, we are simply drawing the noose tighter around our own necks.

Transit is one of the many things a region can improve in order to support and facilitate reinvestment in the existing urban core.

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