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  #5261  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 1:50 PM
llamaorama llamaorama is offline
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I think how I feel about that article depends on the bigger point the author is trying to make.

If he's saying the Red line in particular is not ideal and represents a failure of Austin's leadership to efficiently use public funds for infrastructure, then I agree. But I wouldn't agree with some thesis that public transit and government spending is bad and we should revert to some GOP platform of zero dollars for this or that.
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  #5262  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 7:23 PM
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Every time I drive on I35 at 3:30 AM, I never see any traffic that couldn't be handled by one lane each way.

The whole thing is just a monument to government waste.
Do you really want to compare something that carries more than 220,000 cars per day (at least 300,000 people) to one that carries around 1,500??

Quote:
It wasn't the red line that made CapMetro light rail impossible. It was the quarter cent givebacks and the rest of the unbalanced budget.
I certainly agree that the state has handicapped us greatly but if there has been such a great return and actually helped increase Capmetro's funds than why have they reduced service so much and seen such a large decrease in ridership? And no, the increase in fare does not explain it all, virtually every bus system in America has had similar increases in fare and many have also seen increases in ridership.

Had they tried again with light rail similar to 2000 with more details and maybe slightly shorter than it would have passed. A large reason the 04' line passed was because people were fed up and something had to be done, much like where we find ourselves today. The red line carries roughly 2% of transit riders in town and eats up 8% of the budget not to mention that it has put a negative taste for rail in many people's mouths. I encounter it on a weekly basis in talking to people or on line or on the radio. Why would we want another light rail line (many actually still think it LR) when the red line is so horrible? It may have been a big part of the reason your wonderful 2014 plan was shot down.

In other transportation news the Joint Sustainability Committee has also endorsed the MOS and sent it in a resolution to council. That makes 3 city bodies that have done such and also now Hyde Park NA has also endorsed it. Here is the JSC resolution.
These are the resolved clauses in the resolution unanimously supported by the JSC on a vote of 8-0:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the Joint Sustainability Committee recommends that the City Council pursue a 2016 mobility bond that achieves the following:

1. Fully funds the Bicycle Master Plan, including “Tier 1” Urban Trails; and

2. Fully funds all “very high” and “high” priority sidewalks in the forthcoming 2016 Sidewalk Master Plan; and

3. Approves a comprehensive citywide system concept for light rail; and

4. Provides funding for a minimum operable segment of light rail; and

5. Funds strategic bike, pedestrian, and mass transit components of the Corridor Plans; and

6. Ensures equitable distribution of mobility benefits and burdens from bond proceeds.
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  #5263  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 7:25 PM
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I think how I feel about that article depends on the bigger point the author is trying to make.

If he's saying the Red line in particular is not ideal and represents a failure of Austin's leadership to efficiently use public funds for infrastructure, then I agree. But I wouldn't agree with some thesis that public transit and government spending is bad and we should revert to some GOP platform of zero dollars for this or that.
Agreed
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  #5264  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 7:34 PM
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Latest data on Red Line ridership is from May 2016, average weekday ridership is now 2660, Saturday is now 1706.
Music City Star is 750
Downeaster is 1300
WES is 1700
DCTA is 1900
Shoreline East is 2000
North Star is 2500
So it's not the worse in weekday ridership.
How about riders per mile?
Downeaster is 9 riders per mile
Music City Star is 23 riders per mile
Capital Corridor is 29 riders per mile
Rail runner Express is 30 riders per mile
Shoreline East is 34 riders per mile
Keystone Services is 44 riders per mile
ACE is 58 riders per mile
North Star Line is 63 riders per mile
Red Line is 88 riders per mile
DCTA is 90 riders per mile.
So it's not the worse in riders per mile either.

Therefore, I suggest it is not the worse commuter rail line in America.
Sources of most of the data https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List...s_by_ridership
Well, one thing is for sure you certainly helped solidify how pathetic commuter rail is. I don't follow it much so I had to look up those lines, a few are owned by Amtrak (lol) and only 2 have cities anywhere near the size of Austin.... And one, btw is almost 200 miles.
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  #5265  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 8:55 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
why have they reduced service so much
What reduced service so much?

They run more buses now than they ever did.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
and seen such a large decrease in ridership?
If you actually want to discuss this, there's a variety of reasons (IMO).

Massive fare increases.
The increasing gentrification of Austin, replacing transit-dependent populations with non-transit dependent populations.
The increasing sprawl of Austin (the population growth we're seeing is mostly on the outer fringes).
Continued parking minimums in Austin, leading to the infill development not actually being all that transit-supporting (e.g. replace a pre-war building with no parking with a duplex with 6 parking spots).
UNO, which moved a bunch of students adjacent to campus, replacing a bunch of transit trips with bike/walk trips.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
And no, the increase in fare does not explain it all, virtually every bus system in America has had similar increases in fare and many have also seen increases in ridership.
What other bus system in America has increased fares 350%

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
Had they tried again with light rail similar to 2000 with more details and maybe slightly shorter than it would have passed.
THEY DIDN'T HAVE THE MONEY TO DO SO

We're not talking "slightly shorter". We're talking they had already given away or spent down (or never received, the 2000 plan economic forecast was way over-optimistic) 2/3 of the money.

Between only having 1/3 of the money and the inevitable inflation and construction costs from starting later, they would have only had money for like 3-4 miles.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
The red line carries roughly 2% of transit riders in town and eats up 8% of the budget
Long distance commuter service is _always_ more expensive. That's inevitable. If you look at per-passenger-mile, rather than per-passenger, it's equivalent.

Why is $/passenger the only measure you look at?

(and again, it doesn't "eat up" the budget, it carries the budget)

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
when the red line is so horrible?
It's not horrible, it's massively successful on any objective measure for a commuter line (as shown by electricron's figures)
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  #5266  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 8:58 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post

In other transportation news the Joint Sustainability Committee has also endorsed the MOS and sent it in a resolution to council. That makes 3 city bodies that have done such and also now Hyde Park NA has also endorsed it. Here is the JSC resolution.
These are the resolved clauses in the resolution unanimously supported by the JSC on a vote of 8-0:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the Joint Sustainability Committee recommends that the City Council pursue a 2016 mobility bond that achieves the following:

1. Fully funds the Bicycle Master Plan, including “Tier 1” Urban Trails; and

2. Fully funds all “very high” and “high” priority sidewalks in the forthcoming 2016 Sidewalk Master Plan; and

3. Approves a comprehensive citywide system concept for light rail; and

4. Provides funding for a minimum operable segment of light rail; and

5. Funds strategic bike, pedestrian, and mass transit components of the Corridor Plans; and

6. Ensures equitable distribution of mobility benefits and burdens from bond proceeds.
Do these people even do math?

Did they total it up, and figure out what the tax increase is necessary to pay for everything they're asking for?

Or did they simply ask for everything and a pony as well?
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  #5267  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 9:28 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by electricron View Post
Latest data on Red Line ridership is from May 2016, average weekday ridership is now 2660, Saturday is now 1706.
I'm curious, where did you get those numbers.

In the latest APTA report, I'm seeing 3100 for the red line.

http://www.apta.com/resources/statis...rship-APTA.PDF
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  #5268  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 9:49 PM
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nixcity nixcity is online now
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What reduced service so much?

They run more buses now than they ever did.
They reduced service along the most key corridor, more buses don't necessarily mean more service. And of course they would run more buses the population is growing....
Although I will say it seems like they are finally getting the message over the past 6 months or so by FINALLY decreasing wait times (increased frequency).

Quote:
Massive fare increases.
The increasing gentrification of Austin, replacing transit-dependent populations with non-transit dependent populations.
The increasing sprawl of Austin (the population growth we're seeing is mostly on the outer fringes).
Continued parking minimums in Austin, leading to the infill development not actually being all that transit-supporting (e.g. replace a pre-war building with no parking with a duplex with 6 parking spots).
UNO, which moved a bunch of students adjacent to campus, replacing a bunch of transit trips with bike/walk trips.
Idk what isolated bubble you live in but these issues are occurring all over the country, a friend of mine aptly labeled us as a gentrification nation. Here is an article showing that despite these issues many cities are seeing an INCREASE in ridership, not the 7.7% decrease we saw. There is just a 1% decrease nationwide.
http://www.apta.com/mediacenter/pres...ridership.aspx

Quote:
What other bus system in America has increased fares 350%
350% my ass, the most used form of buses increased by 25 cents, an effing quarter.
http://www.capmetro.org/news-item.aspx?id=4431

Other cities with similar increases.
http://www.nj.com/traffic/index.ssf/...cates_say.html
http://mta.maryland.gov/new-fare-pricing
https://www.sacrt.com/fares16.stm
https://www.cityofmadison.com/metro/fareincrease/
http://www.soundtransit.org/heads-ri...hanges-march-1
http://goldengatetransit.org/farepro...-july-2016.php
http://charmeck.org/city/charlotte/c...is%20Final.pdf
http://www.wakegov.com/planning/tran...se%20Flyer.pdf
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/20...WnK/story.html
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/cta-fare-increase/
http://www.cleveland.com/metro/index...rvice_cut.html
There are more but this is getting boring. And most of those cities had already higher prices than what we still have. In case you haven't noticed prices for things generally get more expensive, its called inflation. Here's some info. showing how NYC's fares started at 5 cents in the early 1900's and have now risen to $2.75.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Yo..._transit_fares

Quote:
It's not horrible, it's massively successful on any objective measure for a commuter line (as shown by electricron's figures)
Yeah, massively successful, as in 22'nd out of 28 commuter rail systems in the US, lol.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...s_by_ridership

Quote:
(and again, it doesn't "eat up" the budget, it carries the budget
It accounts for almost 9% of their operating budget.

Quote:
Do these people even do math?

Did they total it up, and figure out what the tax increase is necessary to pay for everything they're asking for?

Or did they simply ask for everything and a pony as well?
That's not the point, of course they know they couldn't get all of that. The point is that yet another city agency (and now the Hyde Park NA) all want rail to happen and for this year's bond. And where is city council on this, oh yeah, I know, widening roads as usual....so they will look like Slaughter or Braker. But hey, if you show a rendering with nice trees planted it sure does look cool, oh yeah, and bus pullouts, another attempt at something proven to not work.
http://www.austinmonitor.com/stories...-bus-pullouts/

Addendum: As far as UNO goes.....when was ridership highest along that corridor??? Oh yeah, right before they decreased service, UNO already had well over a decade of growth. As I've pointed out before these students don't just go to class and then home and study all the time. They have lives outside of there which is one reason why despite the decreases in service this corridor still far outperforms all others.

Last edited by nixcity; Aug 1, 2016 at 10:01 PM.
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  #5269  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 10:14 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
They reduced service along the most key corridor,
No, they didn't. G/L gets more buses now than before.
Especially along the drag (which sees metrorapids every 6 minutes or so + locals) and especially Lamar north of 183 which added metrorapids and didn't see any cuts of locals.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
And of course they would run more buses the population is growing....
Again, mostly off in the suburbs. The inner city has seen minimal population increase (for instance, many of the census tracts fronting G/L lost population in the last census).


Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
Idk what isolated bubble you live in but these issues are occurring all over the country, a friend of mine aptly labeled us as a gentrification nation.
What bubble are _you_ living in? Austin has been seeing gentrification more than almost any other city. The whole "only city to see a numerical decrease in African-Americans" and all that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
Here is an article showing that despite these issues many cities are seeing an INCREASE in ridership, not the 7.7% decrease we saw.
AGAIN, which of those cities increased fares 250-350%


There is just a 1% decrease nationwide.
http://www.apta.com/mediacenter/pres...ridership.aspx

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
350% my ass, the most used form of buses increased by 25 cents, an effing quarter.
http://www.capmetro.org/news-item.aspx?id=4431
Since 2008, rates have increased from $.50 to $1.25 or $1.75. That's an increase of 250 to 350%.

When did CapMetro system ridership peak? Oh yeah, right about that time.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
In case you haven't noticed prices for things generally get more expensive, its called inflation. Here's some info. showing how NYC's fares started at 5 cents in the early 1900's and have now risen to $2.75.
Since 2008, there has been almost no inflation.

http://data.bls.gov/cgi-bin/cpicalc.pl

http://data.bls.gov/cgi-bin/cpicalc....008&year2=2016


Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
Yeah, massively successful, as in 22'nd out of 28 commuter rail systems in the US, lol.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...s_by_ridership
For an initial investment of ~$120M

Yeah, if we'd invest Billions$ in a system (like some of those higher on the list) we'd have higher ridership.




Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
That's not the point, of course they know they couldn't get all of that.
Then why did they ask for it? It just destroys whatever credibility they might have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
and now the Hyde Park NA
How many people is that? If it's like previous HP NA votes, we're talking like 10 people.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
And where is city council on this, oh yeah, I know, widening roads as usual
You mean the corridor planes that keep or _reduce_ lanes?



Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
As far as UNO goes.....when was ridership highest along that corridor??? Oh yeah, right before they decreased service, UNO already had well over a decade of growth. As I've pointed out before these students don't just go to class and then home and study all the time. They have lives outside of there which is one reason why despite the decreases in service this corridor still far outperforms all others.
But we're not talking about that corridor, we're talking about the whole system ridership.

Before UNO those students would take the bus to class AND those other trips.

Now they just take it for those other trips.
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  #5270  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2016, 10:20 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
Here is an article showing that despite these issues many cities are seeing an INCREASE in ridership, not the 7.7% decrease we saw. There is just a 1% decrease nationwide.
http://www.apta.com/mediacenter/pres...ridership.aspx
WHAT 7% DECREASE?

Okay, here's the whole end of year 2014 APTA ridership report.

The exact same one your article is referencing. It's even freaking linked from your article.

http://www.apta.com/resources/statis...rship-APTA.pdf


TX Austin Capital Metropolitan Trp Auth TOTAL 124.3 3,678.5 3,071.7 2,299.3 3,140.0 2,787.5 33,778.0 34,179.6 3,478.7 -3.79% -1.17%



"There is just a 1% decrease nationwide." That's exactly what Austin had.



Here's the 2015 end of year report:

TX Austin Capital Metropolitan Trp Auth TOTAL 108.0 3,461.6 3,046.5 2,284.8 3,076.3 2,299.3 33,523.6 33,782.6 -0.77%
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  #5271  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 3:34 AM
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7.7%
https://www.capmetro.org/uploadedFil...Web-Report.pdf

The decline in ridership came when they decreased frequency along the drag with their "BRT." Only recently has it gotten back to the levels it was before

Prices were increased 25 cents since 2015.
If you want to go all the way back to 2008 fine, NYC saw the exact same 75 cent increase that we saw. Many agencies have been raising their prices every few years and as I showed many of them are way (relatively speaking) more expensive than our cheap $1.25 per ride yet still outperform us.

22'nd out of 28'th using THE SAME METRICS YOU AGREED WITH.
Quote:
If you look at per-passenger-mile, rather than per-passenger, it's equivalent.
your words
Quote:
It's not horrible, it's massively successful on any objective measure for a commuter line (as shown by electricron's figures)
Also your words
Quote:
So it's not the worse in riders per mile either.
Electricon's words in which you just referenced.
Yup, 22'nd out of 28, pretty damn horrible.
And of course the other systems spent more, they are much, much longer, many with multiple lines. They just happened to put them in the right places, unlike our glorious red line.

And to your gentrification "argument", oops, we are actually ranked 8'th and many cities that have seen more gentrification have seen INCREASES in ridership.
http://grist.org/cities/the-10-u-s-c...g-the-fastest/
http://www.businessinsider.com/map-t...rhoods-2013-11
Didn't even make the list in this one.
http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-pol...ng-turned-rich
or this one
http://atlantablackstar.com/2015/02/...the-fastest/6/
This phenomenon has been happening all over the country for quite some time now.

It is no coincidence that ridership started dropping at the same time they implemented changes to the 1. That is the only argument that one can prove as causal, all the others may have had some impact but messing with our most successful route proved detrimental to the point they still have not recovered.
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  #5272  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 3:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
Yup, 22'nd out of 28, pretty damn horrible.
And of course the other systems spent more, they are much, much longer, many with multiple lines. They just happened to put them in the right places, unlike our glorious red line.

It is no coincidence that ridership started dropping at the same time they implemented changes to the 1. That is the only argument that one can prove as causal, all the others may have had some impact but messing with our most successful route proved detrimental to the point they still have not recovered.
Just wanted to state that while 22 out of 28 is poor, it's still not the worse.

When choosing where upgrades to transit systems should be made, I would suggest choosing your best bus route is a great place to start. Otherwise, why upgrade at all?
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  #5273  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 4:13 AM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
How can I say this with the right level of incredulity without being too insulting.

Are you high?

You just compared literally 20 days in 2016 of CapMetro to all of 2014 for other systems.
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  #5274  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 3:08 PM
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^Nope, its year to date.
from 8,745,317 to 8,076,130 or 7.7%

Also, here is the latest article by the Monitor confirming what I have been saying. And I am no big fan of NA's per say but they do carry a lot of weight in this city, especially the wealthy mostly white ones and as this article points out it was a 20-1 vote, or double what Novacek said, or in his words 200%!!
They now have a second poll showing Austinites want a good rail system and this one hits specifically the MOS and did not just poll people over 40 like the one they did for their bond. Many urbanists, myself included, will work to kill the bond if they do not include this.
http://www.austinmonitor.com/stories...mpaign=AM_Head
I encourage you all to write the mayor and your council representative if you would like to see our fair city get serious about mode shift.
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  #5275  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 3:10 PM
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Just wanted to state that while 22 out of 28 is poor, it's still not the worse.
True, far from massively successful....

Quote:
When choosing where upgrades to transit systems should be made, I would suggest choosing your best bus route is a great place to start. Otherwise, why upgrade at all?
You nailed it, this is what we have been pushing for, we would have loved to make it longer to resemble the original line 1, our best route ever, but due to the red line and now due to not wanting to overbond the electorate this is what we get, a really good start to something much bigger.
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  #5276  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 4:16 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
^Nope, its year to date.
from 8,745,317 to 8,076,130 or 7.7%
Yes, year to date, as of 20 days in.

"All tables reflect ridership data as of January 20, 2016"


To this, you compared the ridership of other systems in 2014.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
Here is an article showing that despite these issues many cities are seeing an INCREASE in ridership, not the 7.7% decrease we saw. There is just a 1% decrease nationwide.
http://www.apta.com/mediacenter/pres...ridership.aspx
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  #5277  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 4:21 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post

And to your gentrification "argument", oops, we are actually ranked 8'th and many cities that have seen more gentrification have seen INCREASES in ridership.
http://grist.org/cities/the-10-u-s-c...g-the-fastest/
http://www.businessinsider.com/map-t...rhoods-2013-11
Didn't even make the list in this one.
http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-pol...ng-turned-rich
or this one
http://atlantablackstar.com/2015/02/...the-fastest/6/
This phenomenon has been happening all over the country for quite some time now.
Uh, that all supports me.

Top 10 (top 8) certainly means "more than almost any other city."

It certainly doesn't support your ludicrous assertion that Austin isn't seeing any more gentrification than the rest of the nation.

And Austin is perhaps unique in the respect that our transit system isn't metro-wide. In Austin, as populations are displaced by gentrification, they're pushed out to areas with no transit service.

These are facts. They are indisputable, they've even written about this issue in the Statesman.
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  #5278  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 4:35 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
It is no coincidence that ridership started dropping at the same time they implemented changes to the 1.
Except that it didn't.

You're entitled to your own opinions, you're not entitled to your own facts.

CapMetro ridership peaked in 2008.

http://www.mystatesman.com/news/news...r-highe/njkwz/

"The effect of higher prices on ridership, meanwhile, has been substantial. In the 2007-08 fiscal year, before the increases, Capital Metro hit its all-time high of 35.4 million annual riders. In 2013-14, there were 33.2 million boardings, down 6.2 percent. The agency expects another 1.2 percent dip this fiscal year, to 32.8 million."


Or, if you want to just look at weekday metrobus ridership.

http://www.capmetro.org/uploadedFile...all-2015v3.pdf

In fall 2012, weekday bus ridership had a daily average of
133,873

By fall 2013 (before any metrorapid or any changes to the 1) weekday ridership had fallen to
125,691


Or if you want to look at the 1 specifically.
Fall 2012 : 14,118
Fall 2013: 12,459

Over 1500 riders per day. Or about as much as they've lost in the corridor since then.

(a loss of another 200 off the 101 from 2012 to 2013 as well).

Quote:
Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
That is the only argument that one can prove as causal, all the others may have had some impact but messing with our most successful route proved detrimental to the point they still have not recovered.
Absolutely, incontrovertibly, provably false.

It's all about the benjamins

Last edited by Novacek; Aug 2, 2016 at 4:45 PM.
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  #5279  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 6:03 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
If you want to go all the way back to 2008 fine, NYC saw the exact same 75 cent increase that we saw.
NYC since 2008 has seen a 37% fare increase.

Local riders in Austin have seen a 250% fare increase.

Those riders transitioned from local to metrorapid (like the Lamar corridor you keep harping on) have seen a 350% fare increase (an increase of $1.25 almost double the absolute increase of new york).

Last edited by Novacek; Aug 2, 2016 at 6:19 PM.
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  #5280  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2016, 9:35 PM
Novacek Novacek is offline
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Originally Posted by nixcity View Post
True, far from massively successful....
Well, then let's look at those 22, shall we?

1) is the MTA long island. 182 years old. 320 miles long. In those years it's had innumerable expansions, revisions, and electrification. I don't even want to hazard a guess as to how many billions of dollars such a system represents.
2) NJ Transit rail. Only 33 years old, but this one is 530 miles. Again, I don't want to hazard a guess as to the whole system's cost.
Anyway, CapMetro isn't even in the league as the capital expenditures of those systems, and having ridership less than #1 doesn't mean it's "pretty damn horrible"

So let's jump down the list to something more like peers. Not even out of the top 10.

7) Caltrain. 29 years old. 77 miles. Just the most recent project (that I could find) 2 years ago was $155M. http://www.caltrain.com/projectsplan...eparation.html
There's got to be hundreds of millions (at least) in capital projects over those 3 decades. http://www.caltrain.com/projectsplan...l_Program.html

8)Metrolink 24 years old. 388 miles long. $450M just to purchase the track in 1990 (over $800M in today's dollars). To say nothing of the actual construction cost, vehicles, and projects since then.

9) MARC train 32 years old (though passenger service was on that line long before). 187 miles. I couldn't find cumulative capital costs for this one, but they just spent #37M just _overhauling_ (not buying) some vehicles. https://mta.maryland.gov/marc-train-...evel-rail-cars

10)UTA frontrunner. 8 years old (probably the closest peer in age). 88 miles. Cost $611M , just for the first 44 miles. http://beta.deseretnews.com/article/...er.html?pg=all

The expansion was $850M http://archive.sltrib.com/story.php?...-rail.html.csp

So slightly older than the red line, gets about 6 times the riders, cost 12 times as much.

11) VRE 24 years old. 90 miles long. I couldn't find original capital costs, but they just (in 2015) spent $35M adding a single station.
And at this point, we're down to about 4 times the ridership of the red line.

12) tri rail. 29 years old. 200 miles. $75 Million in 1989 ($145M in today's dollars) and another $84M in 2000. Some other projects in those 3 decades as well.

13) sounder 16 years old. 83 miles long. $368M expansion. $185 million for track rights. I couldn't find original construction costs or vehicle costs.

14) South shore line. 113 years old. 90 miles long. I'm not going to try and dig into what's been spent on it over a century.

15) TRE 20 years old. Only 34 miles (so probably our closest peer in length). But now we're down to less than 3 times the red lines ridership.

Expanded in length at least twice. Looks to have cost at least $250M so far https://www.azta.org/images/uploads/..._(Blaydes).pdf

16) Coaster 21 years old. 41 miles long. I can't find original costs, but they spent $32M 2008-3013 https://web.archive.org/web/20131105...ick-Facts1.pdf

And at this point, we're into systems (like Coaster) that have basically the same ridership as the red line. With most of them being much older, longer, and much more expensive.


So yes, for the red line's age* and original cheap construction, it's been amazingly successful.

*transit-supporting density at stations is only now really starting up. MLK station, Plaza Saltillo, Crestview, Highland.
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