Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-17-2008, 06:38 PM
Cisco is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 17,208

Phoenix light rail "Train to Nowhere" opens in 100 days: any Phoenicians excited?


Link.

I was reading this and checking out the community response. It seems like such an embarassment to our city. I didn't live here when this started so I don't know all the ins and outs but everyone I've ever spoken with about it hates it. I know they basically closed downtown Phoenix for the last couple years for this mess and it really seems like a train to nowhere to me.

A little bit of how the locals feel about this thing (there is over 8 pages of this stuff at the link up top, this amounts to about 1/3 of a page):
Quote:
The only people who will ride this white elephant are the same people who ride the bus because they have no other choice. How long do you think it will take the pimply faced sociopaths who ride the bus to trash all the shiny new trains? Not very long I think.
Quote:
I just can't wait to drive my car to 19th ave and Bethany Home and park it at Spectrum Mall and get on the train to take me to 44th St and Washington (or around there) and then find a bus to Drive the rest of the way to work. This is going to be a huge benefit to my commute. Adding hours a day to my work commute and adding fear of leaving my car for 9 hours at a shoppinng mall with one of the highest vehicle theft rates in the valley (hope you have "Gap" insurance), and the fact that it leaves me about 7 miles from my true destination is just an added bonus.

Or maybe I'll just keep driving my car like everyone else that doesn't currently ride the bus.
Quote:
You mean 100 days until the dumbest thing AZ tax payers have ever paid for opens... right?
Quote:
Does it go to my job in Scottsdale, NO, does it go to the airport, NO. Does it go to the new stadium NO. Where does it go, nowhere. I'm curious though, how can a city so large be so far behind other cities half their size[]
Quote:
How long until we have to call this "The University of Phoenix Light Rail"?
Quote:
This is going to be such an embarrasment to the city of Phoenix.
  #2  
Old 09-17-2008, 07:26 PM
dalej42 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Chicago
Posts: 15,329
Phoenix is so spread out that life here without a car is hell.

Am I going to use it? I'd like to. 12th street/Osborn puts me close enough to the line.

I guess I'll wait and see.
  #3  
Old 09-17-2008, 07:32 PM
Cisco is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 17,208
Do you drive car or ride bus currently?
  #4  
Old 09-17-2008, 08:04 PM
drewbert is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 2,181
I can't speak specifically to the pros and cons of the new Phoenix light rail system, but in my experience the comments section on newspaper web sites are crawling with people pathologically opposed to public transportation in any way, shape or form.
__________________
Just a guy made of dots and lines
  #5  
Old 09-17-2008, 08:18 PM
Bosstone is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 15,368
I'd love to use it, but it runs just too far north of my commute to be useful. Biking to the rail then biking to work would take me an unacceptable amount of time.

The people bitching about it may not be aware that there's plans to branch it out significantly. It'll take a while to get everything placed, but at least they're starting to get the rail infrastructure in place. It's less ideal here in Phoenix than a denser city, but I think it can still work.

Last edited by Bosstone; 09-17-2008 at 08:20 PM.
  #6  
Old 09-17-2008, 08:43 PM
NinjaChick is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: N/A
Posts: 5,368
Quote:
Originally Posted by drewbert View Post
I can't speak specifically to the pros and cons of the new Phoenix light rail system, but in my experience the comments section on newspaper web sites are crawling with people pathologically opposed to public transportation in any way, shape or form.
In my experience, the comments sections on newspaper sites are crawling with people pathologically opposed to reason, logic, common sense, accepted English grammar and a functional shift key.
  #7  
Old 09-17-2008, 08:50 PM
Tim@T-Bonham.net is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 15,180
Those comments sound similar to what was heard back when the Minneapolis Hiawatha Line light-rail was being built. Now that it's in operation, it is used by 3 times as many people as predicted, years earlier than predicted. Mostly by people who never rode buses, and say they never will ride buses -- but they like the light rail. They are having to expand some of the stations, to allow for bigger trains, because the current ones are too crowded at rush hour.

There is now great demand for additional light rail lines. They are working on one from Minneapolis to downtown St. Paul, and the western suburbs are crying for one out in their direction.

All along the light rail line, there is lots of development going on. New housing is being built, and businesses are being added. The proximity to the light rail is hyped by Realtors as a selling point -- this area of Minneapolis is one of a very few where housing sales have gone up recently.

If the Phoenix one really goes to 'nowhere', my advice would be to quickly buy some of that 'nowhere' land as an investment! People who bought up vacant or underused property along the Minneapolis light rail line got rich from that.

Last edited by Tim@T-Bonham.net; 09-17-2008 at 08:52 PM.
  #8  
Old 09-17-2008, 09:05 PM
NajaSong is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Arizona
Posts: 167
I'm intending on using it. One of the stops is directly in front of my office building and it lets off at ASU. I can drive to work, park where I normally do, hop on the rail to ASU and reverse to get back to work.

I grew up in South Jersey where you could hop on the high speed line to go to Philadelphia. That ended up being cheaper and much less of a headache than driving to Philly.

I'm hoping that once they get their groove going, that the light rail works as well.

For the record, I was opposed to the thing in the beginning. With the plans of expansion, it will be much more palatable in the future (I hope). Unfortunately, it will take so long to really see any benefit.

Too bad they didn't start this project ten to fifteen years ago.
  #9  
Old 09-17-2008, 10:11 PM
sugar and spice is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Chicago
Posts: 1,893
I don't get the part about not going to the airport, it looks like it does. (link) Yes, you have to transfer to a free bus but its *free* which is more or less all you have to say to appeal to the public transit crowd. I mean, people don't take the train to the airport because it's pleasant and soothing, they do it to either save money or beat traffic.
  #10  
Old 09-17-2008, 10:16 PM
dalej42 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Chicago
Posts: 15,329
Quote:
Originally Posted by sugar and spice View Post
I don't get the part about not going to the airport, it looks like it does. (link) Yes, you have to transfer to a free bus but its *free* which is more or less all you have to say to appeal to the public transit crowd. I mean, people don't take the train to the airport because it's pleasant and soothing, they do it to either save money or beat traffic.
I'd think the main reason would be to save money on parking. I currently drive and the light rail won't take me to work. But, I'm waiting to see how popular it becomes.
  #11  
Old 09-17-2008, 10:19 PM
dalej42 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Chicago
Posts: 15,329
BTW, for all who see this thread, don't forget about the proposed Phoenix dopefest

PHX Dopefest

Sorry for the hijack.
  #12  
Old 09-18-2008, 12:56 AM
Bosstone is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 15,368
Quote:
Originally Posted by t-bonham@scc.net View Post
Those comments sound similar to what was heard back when the Minneapolis Hiawatha Line light-rail was being built. Now that it's in operation, it is used by 3 times as many people as predicted, years earlier than predicted. Mostly by people who never rode buses, and say they never will ride buses -- but they like the light rail. They are having to expand some of the stations, to allow for bigger trains, because the current ones are too crowded at rush hour.
I wouldn't be at all surprised if this happens, honestly. Most people have sour feelings about the light rail because the construction has been a nuisance for 2+ years, but I remember using the metro in Tokyo. I grew up in the Southwest, and I'm completely used to ignoring mass transit in favor of personal vehicles, which so many people do here. But out of everything I experienced in Tokyo, the memory that sticks the hardest is being able to walk to the metro station and let it take me wherever I wanted to go.

Granted, the light rail is far more limited, but for those people who have business along the line, and I don't doubt many do, they're going to fall in love with it. Buses just aren't quite the same.

It's going to take a couple decades, but after 15-20 years I'm willing to bet people are going to wonder how they ever got along without it.

Last edited by Bosstone; 09-18-2008 at 12:57 AM.
  #13  
Old 09-18-2008, 01:34 AM
Green Bean is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: NJ, Exit #137
Posts: 12,137
Quote:
Originally Posted by sugar and spice View Post
I don't get the part about not going to the airport, it looks like it does. (link) Yes, you have to transfer to a free bus but its *free* which is more or less all you have to say to appeal to the public transit crowd. I mean, people don't take the train to the airport because it's pleasant and soothing, they do it to either save money or beat traffic.
The cost of the bus trip isn't the issue.

The problem with the bus transfer is that it adds another layer of uncertainty to a very time-sensitive trip. It may work perfectly in practice, but you're still going to have people thinking "what if the bus doesn't come?" Also, adding the transfer means the trip is just a bigger pain for people--especially those with baggage and kids. That might be enough to tip the balance away from using the system. Over time, if the train/bus transfer proves to be reliable, then people will be less wary of using it.

This is not to say that the train to bus to airport thing isn't a good solution. I'm sure it is. But I can understand why people aren't happy about not having a direct train link.
  #14  
Old 09-18-2008, 02:37 AM
Oakminster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Surefall Glade, Antonica
Posts: 19,250
If you ride a train bound for nowhere, be sure to bring some whiskey. Might need it to obtain advice from a gambler thereupon.
  #15  
Old 09-18-2008, 06:51 AM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Bean View Post
The problem with the bus transfer is that it adds another layer of uncertainty to a very time-sensitive trip. It may work perfectly in practice, but you're still going to have people thinking "what if the bus doesn't come?"
Another one comes ten minutes later? If you're leaving less leeway than that for air travel nowadays, then you can't blame the transport system for your plans having too much uncertainty.
  #16  
Old 09-18-2008, 07:15 AM
Green Bean is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: NJ, Exit #137
Posts: 12,137
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
Another one comes ten minutes later? If you're leaving less leeway than that for air travel nowadays, then you can't blame the transport system for your plans having too much uncertainty.
A person has to have confidence that another bus will come 10 (or 20) mintues later if they're going to rely on the system to get them to the airport on time.

People aren't going to leave hours earlier so that they can feel comfortable about the uncertainly of the train/bus when they have other transport options available that they know and trust.

As I said, if the system proves to be reliable, then people will start using it more.
  #17  
Old 09-18-2008, 07:31 AM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Bean View Post
A person has to have confidence that another bus will come 10 (or 20) mintues later if they're going to rely on the system to get them to the airport on time.

People aren't going to leave hours earlier so that they can feel comfortable about the uncertainly of the train/bus when they have other transport options available that they know and trust.

As I said, if the system proves to be reliable, then people will start using it more.
Bear in mind that there's also another significant market for the airport link, for which it is nowhere near as time-critical, and that's arrivals to the city. In many cases they'll assume that the transport options do what they'll say they do.
  #18  
Old 09-18-2008, 10:58 AM
beowulff's Avatar
beowulff is offline
Member
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Scottsdale, more-or-less
Posts: 17,028
The light rail isn't going to be very useful for me (I live and work far, far north of it), but I might use it to avoid traffic downtown during the 4th, etc. I'm all for it though - I've seen what the Metro did for DC (I grew up there), and I've tried to explain that the Phoenix light rail may not provide a lot of value today, but (hopefully) will in 25 years...
  #19  
Old 09-18-2008, 11:06 AM
Sunspace is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Near the GT eeehhhh...
Posts: 27,782
Are people from Phoenix really called Phoenicians?
  #20  
Old 09-18-2008, 11:48 AM
Cisco is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 17,208
Quote:
Originally Posted by beowulff View Post
The light rail isn't going to be very useful for me (I live and work far, far north of it), but I might use it to avoid traffic downtown during the 4th, etc. I'm all for it though - I've seen what the Metro did for DC (I grew up there), and I've tried to explain that the Phoenix light rail may not provide a lot of value today, but (hopefully) will in 25 years...
Oh yeah, the DC Metro is AWESOME. But from what I've seen, this won't be much like the DC Metro. At least not, like you say, for 20+ years. By then I'll be using a jet pack anyway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunspace
Are people from Phoenix really called Phoenicians?
Yes. Aren't we special?
  #21  
Old 09-18-2008, 11:50 AM
Bosstone is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 15,368
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cisco View Post
Oh yeah, the DC Metro is AWESOME. But from what I've seen, this won't be much like the DC Metro. At least not, like you say, for 20+ years.
Everything's got to start sometime. At least we're starting this now, instead of in 20 years when gas costs $20/gal and people are going "Holy crap, we need light rail!"
  #22  
Old 09-18-2008, 11:55 AM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunspace View Post
Are people from Phoenix really called Phoenicians?

Yes, we are.


I'm cautiously optimistic about Light Rail. I just keep hearing stories about how it's going to go at like 10mph and that won't work for me. If it goes at traffic speed (35mph or +), then I probably will take it to & from work on any day that I don't have to run an errand at lunch (which is most of them).

It'll be very easy for me as I live right around the corner from a park & ride station and work right on the line.
  #23  
Old 09-18-2008, 12:17 PM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
I'm cautiously optimistic about Light Rail. I just keep hearing stories about how it's going to go at like 10mph and that won't work for me. If it goes at traffic speed (35mph or +), then I probably will take it to & from work on any day that I don't have to run an errand at lunch (which is most of them)
The average journey speed for urban transport can often sound surprisingly slow. It's easy to think of the equivalent journey by car being done at cruising speed, but this ignores time spent at junctions, in traffic and so on. To put it in context, I checked a randomly-chosen journey across a central part of London on a single line of the Underground (Bond Street to Liverpool Street): 17mph. Travelling the length of Manhattan on the A train is about the same.
  #24  
Old 09-18-2008, 12:26 PM
pulykamell is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: SW Side, Chicago
Posts: 48,694
Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Bean View Post
A person has to have confidence that another bus will come 10 (or 20) mintues later if they're going to rely on the system to get them to the airport on time.
Seems rather straightforward to me to enforce a rigid time schedule with the first stop of the bus starting at the light rail link: you just keep a stack of buses there and move them out every ten minutes, or whatever. All the airports I've been to that have bus or tram service between terminals have kept pretty much religiously to their schedules. I don't see any reason to think the Phoenix airport would not be able to do the same. I mean, LaGuardia has buses that go between terminals (last time I was there I found myself at the complete wrong end of the airport when I should have been at the Marine terminal, and, shocker of shockers, a bus showed up, on time, and took me to the terminal without any problems.) Airports are about the only place I expect buses and trams to show up exactly on schedule.

Last edited by pulykamell; 09-18-2008 at 12:30 PM.
  #25  
Old 09-18-2008, 12:36 PM
Cisco is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 17,208
I live way up at Union Hills, is it ever going to come this far north?
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
The average journey speed for urban transport can often sound surprisingly slow. It's easy to think of the equivalent journey by car being done at cruising speed, but this ignores time spent at junctions, in traffic and so on. To put it in context, I checked a randomly-chosen journey across a central part of London on a single line of the Underground (Bond Street to Liverpool Street): 17mph. Travelling the length of Manhattan on the A train is about the same.
This isn't London or Manhattan, though. It's Phoenix. I drive 17 miles across town to work every day and it takes me 22 minutes. That's 46.36 mph.
  #26  
Old 09-18-2008, 12:39 PM
Bosstone is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 15,368
Quote:
Originally Posted by pulykamell View Post
Airports are about the only place I expect buses and trams to show up exactly on schedule.
Sky Harbor's bus system is decent, too. I've never had to wait more than 5-10 minutes in the long-term economy parking lot (way out on the edge of the airport) for a bus to roll on by.
  #27  
Old 09-18-2008, 12:41 PM
Bosstone is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 15,368
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cisco View Post
This isn't London or Manhattan, though. It's Phoenix. I drive 17 miles across town to work every day and it takes me 22 minutes. That's 46.36 mph.
Highway? Sure the light rail won't be comparable to the highway. But I cut through the middle of Tempe, and neither the 60 nor the 202 are worth going out of my way (plus my bike isn't quite highway-capable yet). I've got a 10 mile drive that takes me about 30 minutes, and 20 mph is a lot more reasonable to expect of a rail system. Plus if it's early morning and I don't have to worry about managing traffic? Heck yeah.

ETA: Also, the city sprawls because it could. As fuel becomes more expensive and people need to find alternate modes of transportation, businesses and residences will begin to tighten up and concentrate on the line. Folks may have a 15-20 mile drive on average now, but as time passes I imagine that average will shrink and be centered around the light rail more.

Last edited by Bosstone; 09-18-2008 at 12:44 PM.
  #28  
Old 09-18-2008, 01:27 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bosstone View Post
Highway? Sure the light rail won't be comparable to the highway. But I cut through the middle of Tempe, and neither the 60 nor the 202 are worth going out of my way (plus my bike isn't quite highway-capable yet). I've got a 10 mile drive that takes me about 30 minutes, and 20 mph is a lot more reasonable to expect of a rail system. Plus if it's early morning and I don't have to worry about managing traffic? Heck yeah.
Depending on where you live in the area the highway can be slower. I take surface streets to & from work now every day and it takes from 15-30 mins depending on time of day, traffic, and how many red lights I hit. I would love to take light rail to work and back, but I won't do it if it's going to take me an hour to get there because it's crawling along at 20mph and traffic is whizzing by at 40mph. I'm just not that green.
  #29  
Old 09-18-2008, 01:29 PM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Transplanted!
Posts: 19,516
Quote:
Originally Posted by beowulff View Post
The light rail isn't going to be very useful for me (I live and work far, far north of it), but I might use it to avoid traffic downtown during the 4th, etc. I'm all for it though - I've seen what the Metro did for DC (I grew up there), and I've tried to explain that the Phoenix light rail may not provide a lot of value today, but (hopefully) will in 25 years...
Most new rail systems start out being pretty near useless. The first subway route in L.A. ran only four miles from Union Station to McArthur Park. To be effective, a mass transit system needs to have a critical mass of disparate stations and neighborhoods that can be reached, and the early Red Line didn't have that. True, it did connect up with the slightly older Blue Line (light rail) that ran from downtown to Long Beach. The Blue Line was a success from its start and is said to be the most heavily traveled light rail line in the country. Still, once you reached the Red Line, being able to go two miles east or west wasn't much help.

As the Red Line was extended up Vermont and through Hollywood, and then to North Hollywood, its usefulness increased greatly, enhanced by the increasing number of people who were commuting into work on Metrolink; they could come into Union Station and then easily reach workplaces near the rail lines. These suburbanites, not surprisingly, tend to be Anglos, leading the rail system's opponents to brand it a system for a few white people while people of color were crammed into buses. But people of color are without question the bulk of the ridership, just as on the buses--on the Blue Line overwhelmingly African-American, on the Red Line mostly Latino with some Korean-Americans, and the Green Line, which runs (almost) to the airport, a mixture. One is more likely to see airport workers than airline travelers on the Green Line.

The system has become modestly successful.
  #30  
Old 09-18-2008, 01:36 PM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Transplanted!
Posts: 19,516
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
The average journey speed for urban transport can often sound surprisingly slow. It's easy to think of the equivalent journey by car being done at cruising speed, but this ignores time spent at junctions, in traffic and so on. To put it in context, I checked a randomly-chosen journey across a central part of London on a single line of the Underground (Bond Street to Liverpool Street): 17mph. Travelling the length of Manhattan on the A train is about the same.
I was astonished to read in a New Yorker article that a subway ride from parts of Brooklyn to midtown Manhattan can take 90 minutes. The article mentioned that for people on these long commutes, reading matter becomes a consumable item like fuel for a fire.

The worst aspect is changing from one train to another, either because the schedules don't mesh, or because the station is poorly designed. In L.A., the Red Line subway terminates at Union Station and the Gold Line runs from there to Pasadena. But to transfer from the subway to the Gold Line, the passenger has to walk or ride up two whole levels, because the Gold Line starts on the main intercity rail concourse. I'm definitely an advocate of mass transit, but I can see why people often think the authorities go out of their way to make it inconenient.
  #31  
Old 09-18-2008, 01:50 PM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
Depending on where you live in the area the highway can be slower. I take surface streets to & from work now every day and it takes from 15-30 mins depending on time of day, traffic, and how many red lights I hit. I would love to take light rail to work and back, but I won't do it if it's going to take me an hour to get there because it's crawling along at 20mph and traffic is whizzing by at 40mph. I'm just not that green.
You're missing the whole point about average speeds, despite commenting on the variable of how many red lights you hit. It's not going to be 'crawling along at 20mph', not if it's going to keep to their stated end-to-end time of 57 minutes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cisco View Post
This isn't London or Manhattan, though. It's Phoenix. I drive 17 miles across town to work every day and it takes me 22 minutes. That's 46.36 mph.
A thought: did the route to work affect where you chose to live? Even if not, I'm sure you'll concede that it's a major consideration for others, which means that once the system is in place, it can become part of such decisions in the future.
  #32  
Old 09-18-2008, 02:12 PM
Hampshire is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 11,194
Quote:
Originally Posted by t-bonham@scc.net View Post
Those comments sound similar to what was heard back when the Minneapolis Hiawatha Line light-rail was being built. Now that it's in operation, it is used by 3 times as many people as predicted, years earlier than predicted. Mostly by people who never rode buses, and say they never will ride buses -- but they like the light rail. They are having to expand some of the stations, to allow for bigger trains, because the current ones are too crowded at rush hour.
The Hiawatha line was fairly well thought out and connects quite a few strategic points. It starts at the Mall of America (massive tourist destination) and runs to the Minneapolis/St.Paul airport where it runs between two main terminals that were previously unattached. From there it runs up Hiawatha Ave. that is slowly being developed with upscale condos, runs past the Mertrodome (Twins/Vikings), and into downtown Minneapolis which is interconnected with miles of skyways. I believe it will be extended a bit further to the new Twins ballpark in 2010.
Not very useful to me but excellent for a LOT of other people.
  #33  
Old 09-18-2008, 02:48 PM
Idle Thoughts is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Arizona
Posts: 12,266
I might ride it once or twice just to see what all the fuss was about. That's of course after it's ridden 100 times or so already so I know it doesn't crash and burn.
  #34  
Old 09-18-2008, 03:00 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
You're missing the whole point about average speeds, despite commenting on the variable of how many red lights you hit. It's not going to be 'crawling along at 20mph', not if it's going to keep to their stated end-to-end time of 57 minutes.

A thought: did the route to work affect where you chose to live? Even if not, I'm sure you'll concede that it's a major consideration for others, which means that once the system is in place, it can become part of such decisions in the future.
Math really isn't my strong suit, but my point is if it takes me 15-30 mins to get to and from work on the surface streets (almost the same route as the new light rail) and it will take light rail 45-60 mins to go the same distance the average speed has to be slower, right? I know all the literature says end to end of 57mins (and I won't be taken it all the way to the other end), but I also hear people constantly saying it will take longer than that.

I *want* to take light rail to and from work. I *want* it to be as fast (or near enough) as driving. I'm even going to take a Saturday class next semester instead of a M-F one just so I can take light rail, but if it's going to more than double my current commute, I'm not will. That's all I was saying.

And for me, the route to work did factor where I bought my house. Even before gas prices went insane I was careful to make sure my commute would never be more than 30mins at worst.
  #35  
Old 09-18-2008, 03:12 PM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
Math really isn't my strong suit, but my point is if it takes me 15-30 mins to get to and from work on the surface streets (almost the same route as the new light rail)
You're sure it's an equivalent route? 15 minutes to run the 20 miles of the light rail would be an average speed of 80mph. Google Maps gives me a driving route two miles longer to get between the same points.
  #36  
Old 09-18-2008, 03:57 PM
Sunspace is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Near the GT eeehhhh...
Posts: 27,782
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunspace View Post
Are people from Phoenix really called Phoenicians?
Yes, we are.
I thought I was being whooshed or something. How do you even pronounce that?

On the other hand, Sky Harbor is a pretty cool name for an airport.

Last edited by Sunspace; 09-18-2008 at 03:59 PM.
  #37  
Old 09-18-2008, 03:58 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
You're sure it's an equivalent route? 15 minutes to run the 20 miles of the light rail would be an average speed of 80mph. Google Maps gives me a driving route two miles longer to get between the same points.
Pretty sure: It starts at Spectrum Mall at 19th ave & Bethany Home and goes south on 19th to Camelback, then east to Central, then south to Jefferson and then east again.

I live and work along the construction zone and the only thing it does differently is at Central & Camelback. It goes a bit on the diagonal around 1st ave to cut through to Central instead of making that turn.

My route to work is what I would consider equivalent. I usually go south first, then east. But my starting and ending points would be roughly the same (I'm actually a little farther than light rail would start as I don't live on 19th ave).

I'm not saying that end to end should take 15 mins, but the stretch that I would take it (which is a shortened route) takes me 15-30 mins by car on a near identical route.
  #38  
Old 09-18-2008, 04:02 PM
Cisco is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 17,208
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunspace View Post
I thought I was being whooshed or something. How do you even pronounce that?
Fuh-NEE-shuns. Like The Phoenicians.
  #39  
Old 09-18-2008, 04:05 PM
Sunspace is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Near the GT eeehhhh...
Posts: 27,782
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cisco View Post
Fuh-NEE-shuns. Like The Phoenicians.
Coming from a city with a lot of Vietnamese fusion places with the word Pho (soup) prominently in their windows, I keep tripping over that extra O in Phoenicians.
  #40  
Old 09-18-2008, 04:41 PM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
I live and work along the construction zone and the only thing it does differently is at Central & Camelback. It goes a bit on the diagonal around 1st ave to cut through to Central instead of making that turn.

My route to work is what I would consider equivalent. I usually go south first, then east. But my starting and ending points would be roughly the same (I'm actually a little farther than light rail would start as I don't live on 19th ave).

I'm not saying that end to end should take 15 mins, but the stretch that I would take it (which is a shortened route) takes me 15-30 mins by car on a near identical route.
How similar to this route is yours?
  #41  
Old 09-18-2008, 05:41 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
How similar to this route is yours?
No where near. This is about as near as I can make it without giving out actual directions to my house & job. However, I do not take the highway to or from work because traffic is worse.
  #42  
Old 09-18-2008, 05:46 PM
Cisco is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 17,208
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
No where near. This is about as near as I can make it without giving out actual directions to my house & job. However, I do not take the highway to or from work because traffic is worse.
Cool, you live near Bookman's. I can and often do lose all concept of time in that place.
  #43  
Old 09-18-2008, 05:57 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cisco View Post
Cool, you live near Bookman's. I can and often do lose all concept of time in that place.
Oh yes. I am only slightly exaggerating when I said I teared up when I found they were opening that one and I no longer needed to drive all the way to the ass-end of Mesa to get my Bookman's fix. I love that store and don't let myself go near as often as I'd like because even trading and cheaper prices doesn't keep my final tab down.
  #44  
Old 09-18-2008, 06:01 PM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
No where near. This is about as near as I can make it without giving out actual directions to my house & job. However, I do not take the highway to or from work because traffic is worse.
So you're going nowhere near the eastern end of the light rail route!
  #45  
Old 09-18-2008, 06:09 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
So you're going nowhere near the eastern end of the light rail route!
What does that have to do with the price of tea in China?

My first post was that I was cautiously optimistic, but was reserving judgment until it's actually up and running to see if it adds (too much) time to my normal commute because I heard it was going to run at like 15-20mph. That's all.
  #46  
Old 09-18-2008, 06:34 PM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
What does that have to do with the price of tea in China?
Because by telling us the time of your commute without telling us it was only 8 miles, it didn't make any sense as a comparison with the average speed of a light rail system.
  #47  
Old 09-18-2008, 07:09 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
Because by telling us the time of your commute without telling us it was only 8 miles, it didn't make any sense as a comparison with the average speed of a light rail system.
I don't see how not. My commute time is what it is - whether that was 8 miles or 15 doesn't matter - it still takes 15-30 mins and I said it was via surface streets which generally have a speed limit of 35-40mph. So yeah it is a valid comparison with the average speed of light rail. Why does it matter how many miles it is? If I can drive 8 miles in 20 mins, but it'll take 50 on light rail, it's all down to the speed. Right? The total distance shouldn't factor.
  #48  
Old 09-18-2008, 07:20 PM
GorillaMan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Portman Road
Posts: 17,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mauvaise View Post
If I can drive 8 miles in 20 mins, but it'll take 50 on light rail, it's all down to the speed. Right? The total distance shouldn't factor.
But it won't take 50 minutes to do 8 miles on light rail. Not unless the other 12 miles of the route are then completed by teleportation.
  #49  
Old 09-18-2008, 08:04 PM
Mauvaise is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Luriekistan
Posts: 2,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaMan View Post
But it won't take 50 minutes to do 8 miles on light rail. Not unless the other 12 miles of the route are then completed by teleportation.
If it goes 10mph it would or near that right? I'm just saying if it goes slower than the street speed limit it *has* to take longer than a car that travels twice as fast, no? Of course, it's all moot if goes the speed limit, which I'm hoping is the case.
  #50  
Old 09-19-2008, 01:49 AM
DesertDog is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, Ariz.
Posts: 6,060
For work the lightrail is useless to me. Presently, living way on the east side, I drive about 22 miles on surface streets (It's about the same speed as the parallel freeway). To use the lightrail, I'd have to drive about 17 miles to its eastern terminus, the ride the rail about six miles, then transfer to a bus for (or walk) the last four mile leg. Driving time, about 35 minutes. I can't see the 'rail taking less than 90, each way. The bus is more direct, with a mile and a half walk* at the home end and a bit over a quarter mile at the work end. That trip would take about two and a quarter hours, each way.

More useful would be going to a baseball game. Same 17 mile drive from home, but it's a 12-mile ride to right in front of the ballpark. Saves the hassle of parking downtown (not to mention the ten-bucks). We'll have to see how long it takes them to disperse an eastbound crowd after the game.

*It would be a quarter mile walk if the connections were ever on time. They never were so it was walk or wait an hour.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:22 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017