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Is suburban LRT for new neighborhoods dead?

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  • Is suburban LRT for new neighborhoods dead?

    When LRT was first devised, it quickly became a mode to promote new not yet built sprawl neighborhoods (eg Clareview). We see some who still have that vision (eg an LRT line supporting the destruction of farmland into sprawl between Edmonton and YEG).

    On a cost benefit basis though, it just doesn't make sense anymore. In Edmonton we saw the suburban vision of WLRT be rejected. In Calgary, SE LRT (the train to billion dollar hospital the PCs built in the middle of nowhere, distant sprawl communities), SE LRT ranks the worst option:

    http://www.calgaryherald.com/touch/s...tml?id=8533922

    Rapid transit to the southeast, long touted as the next major project for Calgary, has been ranked last in a new city study of future transit expansions.

    Transit planners’ cost-benefit analysis of seven new special lines included ones down Centre Street, to the deep southwest and a couple cross-town “bus rapid transit” routes. The southeast transitway, along the future LRT corridor, ties for sixth-best with a loop route to the University of Calgary and nearby hospitals.
    Do you agree that in an age of realization that cities need to densify not sprawl, LRT has changed forever with the suburban vision no longer making sense?

    One oddity in the study above though is SW LRT does well, being seen as an option given the inability in Calgary to complete the ring road there (reserrve issues). Unlike the SE option it doesn't travel through emptiness or involve expensive bridges (eg edmontons 87 LRT).
    Last edited by moahunter; 17-06-2013, 08:09 AM.

  • #2
    So LRT to Millwoods is suburban, but new LRT to millwoods is urban?

    So LRT to West Edmonton is sururban, but new LRT to West Edmonton is urban?

    I'm not sure what point you're attempting to get at here...? And rejected? There's as much or more opposition to this new vision than the old vision.

    Did you miss the memo about LRT to NAIT and then to St Albert currently under construction in the city to the north of you (Edmonton)?

    Maybe you missed the other memos that this new vision LRT isn't any cheaper in construction, has lower passenger carrying capacity, and isn't any quicker than an express bus.

    I'm not sure how using the same route that LRT has planned for 30+ years makes the route any less or more suburban.
    Last edited by Medwards; 17-06-2013, 08:32 AM.
    A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

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    • #3
      I for one, have never seen a study of the cost/benefit other than the paper entitled; The Edmonton LRT: An Appropriate Choice? c 1991 by West and Kim, that seriously question both the motives and economics of LRT. With skyrocketing LRT construction costs since the early 1990's, I doubt that there is any will to analyse what they already know, that the results would be negative. All we get is political spin and transit hype while hundreds of millions of dollars are spent on LRT as basic transit services is mired in inefficiencies.

      http://qed.econ.queensu.ca/pub/cpp/June1991/Kim.pdf
      Last edited by Edmonton PRT; 17-06-2013, 08:54 AM.
      Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.

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      • #4
        Our city is beginning to change. We are seeing new condos and infill projects take shape. We will never be Toronto. But we are most certainly densifying and developing our own urban identity.

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        • #5
          The SE in Calgary is a built out mess. I can see why it would be so expensive to get LRT down there. Plus, most of those users are going to be park & riders anyways... so they can continue to drive west to McLeod and hop the LRT there. I can see why it's a lower priority. They'll continue pushing stations out the NW, NE and South lines

          Don't see how that applies here to Edmonton though
          Over promise and under deliver. It’s the most Edmonton thing you can do.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by 240GLT View Post
            Don't see how that applies here to Edmonton though
            I think the mertics are interesting, cost per rider. It doesn't fully explain in the article how the benefit aspect is calculated.

            The relevance is that planning for lines is focusing more and more on hitting density and potential ridership, and less and less on commute time savings. The design of LRT is changing in accordance with that, theoretical top speeds are less important than hitting populations. I think the days when a brand new unbuilt neighborhood gets LRT are numbered. I also think reconsideration is needed for the "end of line piece", like Gormley and Lewis Estates, the cost benefit isn't great.
            Last edited by moahunter; 17-06-2013, 10:18 AM.

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            • #7
              SE Calgary would be akin to putting LRT to Riverbend and Terwillegar.

              I'm not sure how anything has changed in our route planning. They are still using right of ways that were envisioned 40 years ago. and this applies to both Edmonton and Calgary.
              A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

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              • #8
                Here is my take...

                Why do the far flung SE Calgary residents want LRT? The answer for the Majority would be they want to take the train to and from work. 5 days a week.

                Now you look at the North Central line.. does the same hold true? Yep it sure does but these people will also use the North Central LRT MORE as a main mode of transport NOT just a commuter train from the suburbs to work and back.

                IMO the far SE of Calgary would best be served by Strategic BRT not by a multi billion dollar LRT project that is geared towards dealing with commuting and really not much else.

                Edmonton's initial build for the new Low floor line should have been from the new low floor rail yards to JP or Meadowlark. (IMO)
                Last edited by edmonton daily photo; 17-06-2013, 11:22 AM.
                "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

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                • #9
                  Im confused. ...is moahunter using this as an argument against building the edmonton lrt to the airport? Or saying that the proposed SE lrt to millwoods is crap?

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                  • #10
                    ^Millwoods is not a new suburban neighbohood, it is a mature suburban neighborhood. SE LRT which runs through various mature neighborhoods is in line with what the prioriity list above is saying, and what we are seeing in other cities.
                    Last edited by moahunter; 17-06-2013, 12:53 PM.

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                    • #11
                      ^wasnt that priority list biased heavily towards costs though? Pretty sure it was.

                      Extending our South LRT line to the airport would be cheaper now then in say...30 years. Buy the land now and build the one station at the airport. Build the remainding proposed stations at such a time (in 30 years) when they're deemed needed. The track is there so the costs for a station on which the land is already owned would be minimal.

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                      • #12
                        Toronto is a perfect foil for this topic I think....

                        Look at the Shepard Subway Line and some of the Ford Proposed lines.... We had lines built/proposed with MASSIVE capacity that are under utilized.

                        In reading all of the article moa listed a large part of the reason the Calgary South line scored so slow is because of some very expensive logistical issues. We also have to be careful about putting things off just because they are hard.

                        Ridership should be the NUMBER ONE factor full stop and then we have to choose the best system to meet the need. Not the system we think meets the need like Rob Ford and his Subway to under developed areas.
                        "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
                          Toronto is a perfect foil for this topic I think....

                          Look at the Shepard Subway Line and some of the Ford Proposed lines.... We had lines built/proposed with MASSIVE capacity that are under utilized.

                          In reading all of the article moa listed a large part of the reason the Calgary South line scored so slow is because of some very expensive logistical issues. We also have to be careful about putting things off just because they are hard.

                          Ridership should be the NUMBER ONE factor full stop and then we have to choose the best system to meet the need. Not the system we think meets the need like Rob Ford and his Subway to under developed areas.
                          Im sorry but I have to believe that an lrt link to the airport would have high ridership. And perhaps with some money thrown in from Leduc county it could even be extended into leduc city which would give the south lrt the highest ridership out of any of the proposed lines in edmonton and relieve much of the commuter traffic off that heavily congested section of the QE2.

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                          • #14
                            why do I bother responding to EDP... (deletes post)
                            A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by GranaryMan View Post
                              Originally posted by edmonton daily photo View Post
                              Toronto is a perfect foil for this topic I think....

                              Look at the Shepard Subway Line and some of the Ford Proposed lines.... We had lines built/proposed with MASSIVE capacity that are under utilized.

                              In reading all of the article moa listed a large part of the reason the Calgary South line scored so slow is because of some very expensive logistical issues. We also have to be careful about putting things off just because they are hard.

                              Ridership should be the NUMBER ONE factor full stop and then we have to choose the best system to meet the need. Not the system we think meets the need like Rob Ford and his Subway to under developed areas.
                              Im sorry but I have to believe that an lrt link to the airport would have high ridership. And perhaps with some money thrown in from Leduc county it could even be extended into leduc city which would give the south lrt the highest ridership out of any of the proposed lines in edmonton and relieve much of the commuter traffic off that heavily congested section of the QE2.
                              ^ Maybe.. but ridership is key.. if there is demand for the system than go to it... but I bet rapid Bus service would be the better option at this time.

                              Lets say we had 1 Billion dollars and That is the exact cost of LRT to the Airport....

                              Now do I want a LRT to the airport... or BRT for half the price and expansion of the inner city LRT system as well..

                              I choose option 2 please.
                              Last edited by edmonton daily photo; 17-06-2013, 03:26 PM.
                              "Do you give people who already use transit a better service, or do you build it where they don't use it in the hopes they might start to use it?" Nenshi

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