Transportation headlines, Thursday, June 28

Here is a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by us and the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the Library’s Headlines blog, which you can also access via email subscription or RSS feed.

Orange Line busway is Metro’s quiet success story (L.A. Times)

With the Orange Line Extension opening Saturday, the reporter posits that perhaps there should be more busways and less rail projects in L.A. County and cherrypicks a few stats to back up that point. I think the Orange Line is a success, but I also think the story could have pointed out that four of Metro’s rail lines have significantly higher ridership than the busway and that the fifth rail line — Expo — just opened.

Tentative deal reached on 2-year transportation bill (New York Times)

After nine extensions of the transpo funding bill approved by Congress in 2005, the current Congress looks to have an agreement on a two-year bill. Funding stays at current levels and the bill looks to more closely resemble a bipartisan version reached in the Senate rather than a highly partisan bill floated by the Republican-led House.

Battle lines drawn in high-speed rail vote (L.A. Streetsblog)

A good overview of the three main proposals on the table as the state Legislature prepares to vote on whether to release funds for construction of the first segment of the bullet train in the San Joaquin Valley.


4 replies

  1. Capacity and speed, those are the reasons why I hope the Metro could do grade separation for ALL of its projects, no matter it’s a BRT or LRT, although it will increase the cost of the projects. If the Blue Line was built with grade-separated crossings, it may carry over 100,000 or even 120,000 passengers a day with ease. The train would also operate faster with much less accidents if the line was completely grade separated. I’m afraid the Expo Line will encounter the same problems. LA has 10 million people, thus, we should have a public transportation system that’s efficient enough for a metropolis with 10 million people, not something that’s only good enough for a metropolis with 2 or 3 million people.

  2. “The Orange Line success ironically means buses at rush hour are crowded”

    It’s because people ride it over longer distances leaving no room for more quicker, shorter on-and-offs.

  3. Another downside to busways is limited capacity. The Orange Line success ironically means buses at rush hour are crowded and LA City restrictions on street crossings means the line is running about as frequently as it can. Metro is even exploring platooning — running two concurrent buses to double capacity while limiting the amount of time the buses are crossing intersections. Otherwise all that we can do is invest in expensive grade crossings (over or under streets) to meet any growth in ridership beyond what it is carrying now.