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I was browsing my old blog, MetroRiderLA (which is still regularly updated by the way, just not by me), and came across a link to this video from commenter TonyW79SFW who recorded it off television in April of 2006.
In the video ABC news reporters warn commuters of the inevitable traffic jams of a “treacherous” rainy day commute as a San Bernardino Metrolink train glides smoothly down the middle of the 10 Freeway.
What I love about this video in addition to the obvious – that rail is unencumbered by the many variables that cause traffic jams – is how the aerial shot also highlights the massive amount of space we devote to moving cars and trucks.
The Metrolink tracks are just a sliver compared to the 10 lanes of freeway that surround them.
And here’s more food for thought: a single Metrolink passenger car (the majority of which are Bombardier BiLevel coaches, transit nerds) can carry up to 162 seated passengers. So this three car train – around 315 feet long with the locomotive – could potentially move 486 passengers comfortably.
To put that in perspective: line up 486 of your average cars (length 14.6 feet) and you’ve got over a mile of cars. Even if you packed each car to capacity with 5 people, you’d end up with 97 cars taking up over four times the length of the Metrolink train. No wonder there’s so many lanes!
Categories: Municipal Operators