In the news…
LAUSD teachers could strike beginning Monday — the date has been pushed back. Metro on Tuesday announced it was offering free rides to LAUSD students should a strike occur.
Interesting mix of reactions on the comment board and several suggestions that student fares should always be free. At present, the regular fare for K-12 students is $1 (discounted from $1.75) and the 30-day fare is $24 (discounted from $100).
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo told the NY Daily News that it’s time to “blow up” the New York MTA and rebuild the agency from scratch. I’m guessing his press aide winced at the words “blow up.” Among the eyebrow-raising quotes: “He referred to a “passive conspiracy of the transportation industrial complex” where major capital projects are undertaken with the same contractors and vendors, and no competition for designs.” I hope Oliver Stone directs the film adaptation.
The Center for Investigative Journalism has posted a long article about efforts by one Beverly Hills resident to stop the Purple Line Extension.
Speaking of the subway, here’s a new pic taken recently at the future Wilshire/La Brea Station:
We hope those of you going to the Rams playoff game on Saturday will take Metro as the Expo Line and Silver Line are both short walks to/from the Coliseum. This article predicts 30 percent of the fans will be pulling for the Cowboys owing to them A) being America’s team; B) the Cowboys training in Oxnard. ? Not my team!!!
Fun piece by Laura Bliss at Citylab on early Kate McKinnon work defending the rights of cars and “landboats.” There’s a video, too, but due to some pottymouth language can’t be posted here. Very funny.
Gotta love the folks who take the time to check out Metro Service Council agendas for gems such as this:
The Airport Metro Connector will be built at Aviation and 96th Street and will be the transfer point between Metro Rail and the future airport people mover that will serve the passenger terminals. Metro is doing public outreach on potential station names and major construction is slated to begin next year with a target completion date of 2023. More in this presentation.
And now the inevitable question…Beanfield. From the city of L.A.’s Office of Historic Preservation:
Some transpo and city news from Twitter:
The proposed Clippers arena in Inglewood has cleared a legal hurdle, as a judge ruled the team's agreement with the city didn't violate California’s Environmental Quality Act. https://t.co/nEh7sTfskI
— Nathan Fenno (@nathanfenno) January 9, 2019
Carmen Bianco, the former head of New York City Transit, says Cuomo’s new L train plan falls short on safety and he wouldn’t have agreed to it: https://t.co/7QICUk0hhz
— Emma G. Fitzsimmons (@emmagf) January 9, 2019
Bus-only lanes — "less sexy but cheaper and more achievable" than rail — have cut the average one-way commute in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania from 2 hours to 45 minutes: https://t.co/9utC8Sxaaj
— Laura J. Nelson 🦅 (@laura_nelson) January 8, 2019
Opening tomorrow: Fort Worth's new commuter rail connection to DFW Airport, TEXRail: https://t.co/gP2QQtF71J Unfortunately, after spending $1 billion on the project, service will only be every hour. This is a woeful misuse of public resources—but it's a fixable situation.
— Yonah Freemark (@yfreemark) January 4, 2019
Categories: Transportation Headlines
So even the “3rd-world” country of Tanzania has figured out that bus-only lanes (BRT–i.e., bus rapid transit) are cheaper, more efficient, and thus more cost-effective (not to mention more flexible and reliable) than rail “rapid” transit such as Metro continues to insist on building, at enormous and wasteful cost.
As a daily rider of Metro trains and buses (and occasional municipal buses) for over a decade, I noticed long ago that in most cases L.A. County bus lines are much more reliable (and flexible) than rail lines (like the new, outrageously wasteful extension of the Gold Line to Claremont, which is very unlikely to generate the ridership to justify its enormous cost disadvantage over existing or improved bus lines to Pasadena or DTLA).
Consider: whenever a self-powered Orange-Line (or Silver-Line) BRT bus breaks down, the next bus arriving on that line can pick up its passengers rather quickly and carry them on to their destination(s). By contrast, whenever a Blue Line (or insert name of other MetroRail line with frequent breakdowns) train stops running, many subsequent trains on that line often are severely delayed–or even totally blocked from running (in the case of a power-supply problem)–for an extended period. Often the resulting delay (or total blockage) even affects trains running in the opposite direction on the same line.
Also, a light-rail line powered by electrified wiring seems to be subject to more possible failures (whether on individual trains or on the larger system) than is a self-powered bus–especially one operating on a dedicated BRT lane.
When will Metro finally figure out the numerous cost and flexibility advantages that buses–especially when running on dedicated lanes–hold over rail?