Comments for Switching Modes http://switchingmodes.com Putting Transit On The Fast Trackā„¢ Mon, 08 Feb 2010 06:42:38 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.com/ Comment on New BART cars: demo model by 2014 by Nichobot http://switchingmodes.com/2009/05/06/new-bart-cars-demo-model-by-2014/#comment-341 Nichobot Mon, 08 Feb 2010 06:42:38 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?p=807#comment-341 2028, eh? Did BART ever think about how these cars will be about 20 years outdated once they get them all out and running? 2028, eh? Did BART ever think about how these cars will be about 20 years outdated once they get them all out and running?

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Comment on BART: increasing system capactity without a new transbay tube by Michael F. Sarabia http://switchingmodes.com/proposals/bart-capacity-tbt/#comment-339 Michael F. Sarabia Thu, 21 Jan 2010 15:30:21 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?page_id=451#comment-339 Why not expand the Dumbarton Bridge with a BART rail? Since BART will reach the Transbay limit, sooner rather than later, it is best not to put all eggs... etc. Someday, a long, long time from now, BART will find its way to San Jose, after it builds (waste $500 Million each) the Oakland Airport Connector and the Bay Point to Antioch eBART extension with a totally new kind of train with its own crews, maintenance people and parts, etc. Is anybody in charge of BART planning? Are they getting "a cut" from their bank loans? Why, put the system in debt for $1 BILLION dollars? Will they have to pay it back? With interest? By increasing fares? Which decrease the number of minimum wage workers than can afford BART? How many minimum wage workers from Pittsburg/Bay Point could afford to continue working at SFO with a daily roundtrip ticket at $21.80? Do they care? They got their pension by now... Why not expand the Dumbarton Bridge with a BART rail?
Since BART will reach the Transbay limit, sooner rather than later,
it is best not to put all eggs… etc.
Someday, a long, long time from now, BART will find its way to San Jose, after it builds (waste $500 Million each) the Oakland Airport Connector and the Bay Point to Antioch eBART extension with a totally new kind of train with its own crews, maintenance people and parts, etc. Is anybody in charge of BART planning? Are they getting “a cut” from their bank loans?
Why, put the system in debt for $1 BILLION dollars? Will they have to pay it back? With interest? By increasing fares? Which decrease the number of minimum wage workers than can afford BART?
How many minimum wage workers from Pittsburg/Bay Point could afford to continue working at SFO with a daily roundtrip ticket at $21.80?
Do they care? They got their pension by now…

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Comment on BART: increasing system capactity without a new transbay tube by Aaron http://switchingmodes.com/proposals/bart-capacity-tbt/#comment-338 Aaron Thu, 31 Dec 2009 20:10:12 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?page_id=451#comment-338 D'oh, I missed Rafael's mentioning of the side platforms. Sorry. D’oh, I missed Rafael’s mentioning of the side platforms. Sorry.

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Comment on BART: increasing system capactity without a new transbay tube by Aaron http://switchingmodes.com/proposals/bart-capacity-tbt/#comment-337 Aaron Thu, 31 Dec 2009 20:09:05 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?page_id=451#comment-337 I always figured the logical thing would be to build a new Muni Metro tunnel under Mission between 11th and Embarcadero, and allow BART to use both levels of the existing Market Street subway. A Muni Metro tunnel would have much shorter platforms and thus be cheaper to construct, and it would be easier to have just one set of paid areas in the BART system. Another, possibly less intensive solution would be to dig out the outsides of the platforms at Embarcadero and Montgomery. It would allow both sets of doors to open, which should speed things up somewhat. I always figured the logical thing would be to build a new Muni Metro tunnel under Mission between 11th and Embarcadero, and allow BART to use both levels of the existing Market Street subway. A Muni Metro tunnel would have much shorter platforms and thus be cheaper to construct, and it would be easier to have just one set of paid areas in the BART system.

Another, possibly less intensive solution would be to dig out the outsides of the platforms at Embarcadero and Montgomery. It would allow both sets of doors to open, which should speed things up somewhat.

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Comment on The Oakland Airport Connector: Bringing cable cars back to the Bay Area! (maybe) by A warm welcome to this year’s new Oakland bloggers. You guys rock! : A Better Oakland http://switchingmodes.com/2009/05/16/the-oakland-airport-connector-bringing-back-cable-cars-to-the-bay-area-maybe/#comment-336 A warm welcome to this year’s new Oakland bloggers. You guys rock! : A Better Oakland Thu, 31 Dec 2009 17:26:16 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?p=937#comment-336 [...] Switching Modes author and I do not tend to share the same perspective about what is or is not a wise transportation investment. Nevertheless, it’s well written, and challenges to one’s perspective are always [...] [...] Switching Modes author and I do not tend to share the same perspective about what is or is not a wise transportation investment. Nevertheless, it’s well written, and challenges to one’s perspective are always [...]

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Comment on About Us by Transit Is Not A Technology… « The Gondola Project http://switchingmodes.com/about/#comment-333 Transit Is Not A Technology… « The Gondola Project Mon, 07 Dec 2009 10:58:11 +0000 http://switchingmodes.wordpress.com/?page_id=25#comment-333 [...] international business and he’s smart. His two websites (Paris, The Avant-Gard of Rail and Switching Modes) are innovative explorations of transit issues without the typical techno-babble. He knows how to [...] [...] international business and he’s smart. His two websites (Paris, The Avant-Gard of Rail and Switching Modes) are innovative explorations of transit issues without the typical techno-babble. He knows how to [...]

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Comment on The Oakland Airport Connector: Bringing cable cars back to the Bay Area! (maybe) by Steven Dale http://switchingmodes.com/2009/05/16/the-oakland-airport-connector-bringing-back-cable-cars-to-the-bay-area-maybe/#comment-332 Steven Dale Mon, 07 Dec 2009 10:19:28 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?p=937#comment-332 Personally I'm a big fan of Cable Propelled Transit (CPT). Luckily, the writer of this post recognizes the value of the technology. Too many people think cable is a "niche" technology that's too expensive and slow. When you actually look at the research, however, you quickly learn that the exact opposite is true. I'm trying to rectify that disconnect between the perception and reality of cable over at www.gondolaproject.com if you feel like checking it out. Great post! Personally I’m a big fan of Cable Propelled Transit (CPT). Luckily, the writer of this post recognizes the value of the technology. Too many people think cable is a “niche” technology that’s too expensive and slow. When you actually look at the research, however, you quickly learn that the exact opposite is true. I’m trying to rectify that disconnect between the perception and reality of cable over at http://www.gondolaproject.com if you feel like checking it out. Great post!

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Comment on New BART cars: demo model by 2014 by Vancouverboy http://switchingmodes.com/2009/05/06/new-bart-cars-demo-model-by-2014/#comment-329 Vancouverboy Thu, 26 Nov 2009 19:44:42 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?p=807#comment-329 Living in Vancouver Canada, we have articulated trains for all of three of our skytrain lines (albeit, 2 different systems) with no real concern in regard to trains have glitches. Worrying about taking a WHOLE train out of service if something happens on a single car is not a concern. With headways as low as 108 seconds, loosing one train is NOT a tragedy. Granted BART only comes every 10-15 minutes, so loosing one train can be detrimental, but with the new trains, these headways will be drastically lowered, no? Also, we have spare track sections throughout our system that allows for trains to be parked all over in case of "surge" needs.... or a dead train needing replacement. Does the BART system have a similar setup? Living in Vancouver Canada, we have articulated trains for all of three of our skytrain lines (albeit, 2 different systems) with no real concern in regard to trains have glitches. Worrying about taking a WHOLE train out of service if something happens on a single car is not a concern. With headways as low as 108 seconds, loosing one train is NOT a tragedy. Granted BART only comes every 10-15 minutes, so loosing one train can be detrimental, but with the new trains, these headways will be drastically lowered, no?

Also, we have spare track sections throughout our system that allows for trains to be parked all over in case of “surge” needs…. or a dead train needing replacement. Does the BART system have a similar setup?

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Comment on Supply VS. Demand In Transportation Planning by lyqwyd http://switchingmodes.com/2009/09/04/supply-vs-demand-in-transportation-planning/#comment-325 lyqwyd Fri, 23 Oct 2009 23:48:40 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?p=1053#comment-325 The problem with OAC is that it is an actively bad project. It makes no improvement over the existing system time-wise, costs way more for a ticket, will cost $500 million, but there are much cheaper systems that would actually improve service, and be able to lower the ticket price. There are much worthier projects that are being de-funded in order to pay for the OAC, or other projects that have not been planned where that money could be spent. The MTC is trying to take away money from the AC transit BRT system. Other projects that would be better than OAC include an infill station between Fritvale & Oakland Coliseum, Turnbacks for BART so not all trains need to go to the end of the line. Infill stations in San Francisco, capacity improvements for Embarcadero & Montgomery Station, Dumbarton rail bridge, grade separations for commuter rail. These projects would be actual improvements, rather than detrimental systems, and the list goes on and on. The OAC as currently proposed is one of the worst transit projects ever conceived. I would be fine with it if the original project had been feasible at the original cost, but it's now gone up 4 times in cost, the infill station has been removed, and it will no longer connect directly to the terminal, all for a cost of $500 million. The other projects mentioned like Central Subway and BART to San Jose are very expensive, but do actually solve real problems. They do not deserved to be discussed in the same thread. They may have their issues, but they are orders of magnitude better than the travesty that is the OAC. The problem with OAC is that it is an actively bad project. It makes no improvement over the existing system time-wise, costs way more for a ticket, will cost $500 million, but there are much cheaper systems that would actually improve service, and be able to lower the ticket price. There are much worthier projects that are being de-funded in order to pay for the OAC, or other projects that have not been planned where that money could be spent. The MTC is trying to take away money from the AC transit BRT system. Other projects that would be better than OAC include an infill station between Fritvale & Oakland Coliseum, Turnbacks for BART so not all trains need to go to the end of the line. Infill stations in San Francisco, capacity improvements for Embarcadero & Montgomery Station, Dumbarton rail bridge, grade separations for commuter rail. These projects would be actual improvements, rather than detrimental systems, and the list goes on and on. The OAC as currently proposed is one of the worst transit projects ever conceived.

I would be fine with it if the original project had been feasible at the original cost, but it’s now gone up 4 times in cost, the infill station has been removed, and it will no longer connect directly to the terminal, all for a cost of $500 million.

The other projects mentioned like Central Subway and BART to San Jose are very expensive, but do actually solve real problems. They do not deserved to be discussed in the same thread. They may have their issues, but they are orders of magnitude better than the travesty that is the OAC.

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Comment on Supply VS. Demand In Transportation Planning by Dustin http://switchingmodes.com/2009/09/04/supply-vs-demand-in-transportation-planning/#comment-311 Dustin Sun, 27 Sep 2009 03:22:21 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?p=1053#comment-311 Good to see you back. Good to see you back.

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Comment on Supply VS. Demand In Transportation Planning by Switching Modes http://switchingmodes.com/2009/09/04/supply-vs-demand-in-transportation-planning/#comment-310 Switching Modes Tue, 22 Sep 2009 10:10:03 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?p=1053#comment-310 My point wasn't to say those points are for certain, but rather that a full study may point out some of those problems. I did however mention that I believe the idea does warrant a full study. My point wasn’t to say those points are for certain, but rather that a full study may point out some of those problems. I did however mention that I believe the idea does warrant a full study.

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Comment on BART: increasing system capactity without a new transbay tube by Rafael http://switchingmodes.com/proposals/bart-capacity-tbt/#comment-309 Rafael Mon, 21 Sep 2009 14:24:12 +0000 http://switchingmodes.com/?page_id=451#comment-309 "Technically BART can run at two minute headways, but loading and unloading passengers takes additional time, so longer headways are needed." Sounds to me like the focus should be on improving pedestrian flow capacity inside the trains, on the platforms and up to the surface. Switching to rolling stock with additional doors and fold-up seats along the sides would be a start. Adding side platforms to the existing Embarcadero and Montgomery stations would involve cutting holes into the existing tunnel walls exactly where the doors of the trains are. For obvious reasons, trains would have to stop at the right location. The side platforms would connect directly to new surface exits west and east of the existing ones, bypassing both SF Muni subway and the shared concourse level. All BART trains would open both sets of doors at these modified stations. Another, possibly more difficult, approach would be to persuade SF businesses to stagger their working hours or, to relocate some back office operations to the East Bay. Spending $10 billion or more on a new transbay tube and BART line down Mission Street may become necessary someday, if only for seismic redundancy, but not yet. Bitter irony: Quentin Kopp nixed plans to include support for future BART/light rail/HSR tracks on the new east span of the Bay Bridge because a project to add cantilevered tracks to either side of the lower deck of the west span plus tunnels through Yerba Buena island plus approaches into SF would have cost $3 billion. Now, SF will have to hope that the extra-fancy new TTC will provide the requisite additional capacity via buses alone. <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoplan_Jumbocruiser" rel="nofollow">Articulated bi-level motorcoaches</a> might help, but only if there are enough bus lanes in the East Bay to avoid getting these vehicles stuck in traffic before they ever get onto the Bay Bridge. Building ridership will depend on offering travel times that are competitive with BART (hard) and/or greater comfort (easy) and/or lower fares (depends). In addition, it could be valuable to offer free broadband internet access on board the buses. “Technically BART can run at two minute headways, but loading and unloading passengers takes additional time, so longer headways are needed.”

Sounds to me like the focus should be on improving pedestrian flow capacity inside the trains, on the platforms and up to the surface. Switching to rolling stock with additional doors and fold-up seats along the sides would be a start. Adding side platforms to the existing Embarcadero and Montgomery stations would involve cutting holes into the existing tunnel walls exactly where the doors of the trains are. For obvious reasons, trains would have to stop at the right location. The side platforms would connect directly to new surface exits west and east of the existing ones, bypassing both SF Muni subway and the shared concourse level. All BART trains would open both sets of doors at these modified stations.

Another, possibly more difficult, approach would be to persuade SF businesses to stagger their working hours or, to relocate some back office operations to the East Bay.

Spending $10 billion or more on a new transbay tube and BART line down Mission Street may become necessary someday, if only for seismic redundancy, but not yet.

Bitter irony: Quentin Kopp nixed plans to include support for future BART/light rail/HSR tracks on the new east span of the Bay Bridge because a project to add cantilevered tracks to either side of the lower deck of the west span plus tunnels through Yerba Buena island plus approaches into SF would have cost $3 billion.

Now, SF will have to hope that the extra-fancy new TTC will provide the requisite additional capacity via buses alone. Articulated bi-level motorcoaches might help, but only if there are enough bus lanes in the East Bay to avoid getting these vehicles stuck in traffic before they ever get onto the Bay Bridge. Building ridership will depend on offering travel times that are competitive with BART (hard) and/or greater comfort (easy) and/or lower fares (depends). In addition, it could be valuable to offer free broadband internet access on board the buses.

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