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Light Rail in Central Ohio

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Transportation Light Rail in Central Ohio

Viewing 15 posts - 436 through 450 (of 634 total)
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  • #1053953

    ohioswimmer
    Participant

    Did anyone see this gem at the 614 Magazine website this week.

    http://614now.com/2014/opinion/opinion-dont-be-railroaded-columbus

    Clueless…

    It was nice to read that OSU is moving an informed conversation along.

    #1053955

    JAL
    Participant

    I am sure Wayne probably lives in the suburbs and loves his car, so to him 1+ billion dollars to fix 2 miles of 71/70 in Columbus is fine, but 350 million for 2 miles up High St is WAY too much to invest in Columbus’ transportation future. As for C-bus, I love it, but I can usually walk or CoGo faster from Downtown (home) to the middle of the Short North during rush hour and during Fri/Sat night gridlock along High St.(from Nationwide Blvd all the way up to around 5th Ave. Unfortunately the bus has to navigate the same mess all those cars do. Something with complete right-of-way is really needed up/down High St, as I imagine the traffic will only continue to get worse over the next several years.

    #1053956
    MichaelC
    MichaelC
    Participant

    Wayne’s arguments are tired, and unnecessarily barbed. To lead off his screed with a jab at “wannabe” city planners, he seems awfully assured of his city planning proposal of promoting the status quo.

    Adding a new dimension to Columbus’ transportation system is extremely expensive in the short-run. Not adding a new dimension is myopic and would be more expensive in the long run.

    #1053989

    orcaman42
    Participant

    LONG LONG LONG LONG OVERDUE. Several other cities have seen nothing but a swell of growth with an infusion of talented workforces once light rails have been installed. Denver & Albuquerque both have their own & their towns are way smaller than Columbus as far as population goes. Yes each city runs their train right through the center of town w/ out much effort at all. It’s easy to find a local station, buy a ticket, hop on & go. Each state has already made plans to join the two systems together with free wifi for your journey. Cleveland & Cincinnati already have Amtrak. But that doesn’t connect into Columbus. California has already dug up it’s track that they buried & is using it today. Why Columbus is still “talking” about this is beyond me. It could save so much in paving costs alone by taking cars off the road. Lets be honest, who “wants” to sit in traffic when you can just glide through by light rail? It’s a no brainer people.

    #1053997

    ehill27
    Participant

    The thing that concerns me about this proposal is the use of streets (High and Broad). If there is no exclusive lane for the trains, they will get bogged down in traffic with all the cars, undercutting a key advantage of rail.

    Broad has the room to spare, but I’m not so sure about High.

    #1054000

    heresthecasey
    Participant

    If there was one spot in Columbus that a ‘subway’ tunnel would actually be useful, I would say it is beneath High Street from about Nationwide Blvd up through until Hudson.

    This stretch gets extremely congested at peak commute times, on weekends, and during festivals/special events. Having a dedicated, grade-separated ROW on this dense and popular corridor would give transit a massive advantage over other modes of travel.

    You would save a large amount of time and hassle getting to/from the area, as well if you were just passing through – which I think would be a big sell to many for such a project. It would actually be a real transportation project, as well as help to spur large amounts of economic development. Currently, the bus (or potential streetcar) is stuck along with everyone else on the street. Having a train (or bus – see Boston’s MBTA Silver Line) in a tunnel beneath the street, which could bypass all of that would be a tremendous asset.

    Yes, the costs are large to begin with, but they are well worth it over time. Even if it cost $1 Billion in total, that’s not so much spread out over the construction timeline. If it took 10 years to fully build, that would just be $100 million a year, equivalent to the cost of two HighPoints. That’s hardly breaking the bank, especially when considering a large portion would be federal money, and given the long-term usefulness of the infrastructure.

    FWIW the 4.5 mile sewer tunnel is only costing ~375M, including its budget overruns, and Nationwide to Hudson is only 3.3 ;)

    #1054030

    columbusmike
    Participant

    The thing that concerns me about this proposal is the use of streets (High and Broad). If there is no exclusive lane for the trains, they will get bogged down in traffic with all the cars, undercutting a key advantage of rail.

    Broad has the room to spare, but I’m not so sure about High.

    I believe there would be signal priority and dedicated lanes/tracks….I’m 99% sure that’s how it works in other cities.

    #1054031

    columbusmike
    Participant

    I wonder if the light rail going to the airport could also eventually go out to Easton, as well as loop past all the airport parking lots, hotels, etc. along international gateway?

    #1054068

    Pablo
    Participant

    <div class=”d4p-bbt-quote-title”>ehill27 wrote:</div>
    The thing that concerns me about this proposal is the use of streets (High and Broad). If there is no exclusive lane for the trains, they will get bogged down in traffic with all the cars, undercutting a key advantage of rail.

    Broad has the room to spare, but I’m not so sure about High.

    I believe there would be signal priority and dedicated lanes/tracks….I’m 99% sure that’s how it works in other cities.

    In Toronto, streetcars share the road with cars, and they do get bogged down in traffic. Toronto’s new streetcars can carry 251 passengers. Sometimes the routes are separated from automobile traffic. Toronto is also building a tunnel for a 10 kilometer section of a new light rail line, similar to what heresthecasey described for High St.
    http://www.thecrosstown.ca/

    #1054332
    ColumbusHearsAWho
    ColumbusHearsAWho
    Participant

    Had to go looking for everyone’s favorite GIF again.

    Three things one can count on in this (Columbus) life: Death, Taxes, and Streetcar-Talk on Columbus Underground.

    I really don’t understand the appeal, and I’m skeptical that there are enough municipal, state, federal, and business resources to get it done.

    I get that we need a mix of transportation options. But the Streetcar doesn’t really need to be one of them, does it?

    When it comes to great private transportation ideas of the 21st century you have Netjets, Uber/Lyft, and Space Tourism. Short of Elon Musk’s crazy warp-speed rail system in California there are no new ideas. Just people studying City and Regional planning at college and making endless proposals about theoretical benefits without any of their own investors to make it a reality.

    And thinking that one could persuade Congress or the State Legislature to shift money from highways to streetcars….. Congress barely funded the Trust for Highways last year!

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    #1054337

    columbusmike
    Participant

    “And thinking that one could persuade Congress or the State Legislature to shift money from highways to streetcars….. Congress barely funded the Trust for Highways last year!”

    Well, fortunately things are changing. Many politicians are warming up to alternative transportation because our highway system, as you note, is struggling for funding needed to maintain the mess we created. Mass transit is proven to be much more efficient and cost considerably less than highway spending…and thankfully for our cities, our health, and communities we are slowly moving back towards modern public transportation.

    #1054352
    MichaelC
    MichaelC
    Participant

    You’d have a point, ColumbusHearsaWho, if cities as different as Charlotte, Phoenix, Portland and soon Raleigh-Durham hadn’t embraced light rail in recent years.

    #1054368
    ColumbusHearsAWho
    ColumbusHearsAWho
    Participant

    Harpers had a great story about Amtrak this past summer that detailed all of the money that was supposed to be sent by Congress, only to be repurposed year after year. The Amtrak budget has continued to decline for two decades. Not sure where government is wising up.

    Listing a handful of U.S. cities with Light rail is not terribly compelling. Cities are dynamic places with unique needs. Detroit is currently razing city blocks. Miami is dealing with flooded storm sewers thanks to rising tides. And who is embracing it? Riders? The poor? Business Leaders? City Council? The Feds? Commuters?

    I can remember when folks on CU supported a rail running from downtown to Polaris. Great for jobs. People downtown could shop at the Fashion Place. Now we’re convinced that people need to travel from the airport to “downtown.” Anywhere will do. Short North? Brewery District? Discivery District? Broad and High? It doesn’t really matter; we just need to get them to the Core so they have Options from there.

    #1054369
    MichaelC
    MichaelC
    Participant

    .

    #1054419

    JAL
    Participant

    When it comes to Highways-no one even seems to question cost-I see it is only going to cost a measly $53 million to rebuild existing adequate exit ramps at I-71 & US37/36 because of the proposed Outlet mall.

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