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Design a Better Boston Are you disappointed with the state of Boston's current architecture/development? Think you have a better idea? Post it here.

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Old 08-12-2017, 12:46 AM   #2461
Charlie_mta
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Re: Boston 2024

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Originally Posted by bigpicture7 View Post
After all the dust settles, and all the blood dries, and all the venom has been spewed, it's still the same old, tired, unanswered question:

How do we get billions of dollars required to upgrade the much-needed infrastructure in the city/metro that will make the Boston a better place for everyone:
* A circumferential transit line
* A red line / blue line connector
* North/South rail link (minus central station)
* Better connectivity to underserved / population-dense areas
Stop flushing 100's of $billions in "foreign aid" down the toilet to all those shit-hole countries who hate us, and also stop financing the military-industrial complex with stupid wars. Then spend that money on US infrastructure instead.

By the way, I completely agree with your project list.
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Old 08-13-2017, 11:37 AM   #2462
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Re: Boston 2024

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Originally Posted by Charlie_mta View Post
Stop flushing 100's of $billions in "foreign aid" down the toilet to all those shit-hole countries who hate us, and also stop financing the military-industrial complex with stupid wars. Then spend that money on US infrastructure instead.

By the way, I completely agree with your project list.
Well that's loaded as hell... especially for such a fractional part of the U.S. budget...
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Old 08-13-2017, 10:27 PM   #2463
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Re: Boston 2024

That was a stupid post of mine. Please accept my apologies for the hateful tone.
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:17 AM   #2464
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Re: Boston 2024

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Originally Posted by bigpicture7 View Post
After all the dust settles, and all the blood dries, and all the venom has been spewed, it's still the same old, tired, unanswered question:

How do we get billions of dollars required to upgrade the much-needed infrastructure in the city/metro that will make the Boston a better place for everyone:
* A circumferential transit line
* A red line / blue line connector
* North/South rail link (minus central station)
* Better connectivity to underserved / population-dense areas

At the end of the day, we still have the same old people saying
"No, No, No, No....Not my money, Not my money, Not my money"

So the question still remains - how do we get the money?
I'd pay a tax surcharge, but x% of what I make will get you a traffic light.
We need collective support for costly infrastructure improvements.
First ... we don't "need" to do anything besides keep existing infrastructure running with maintenance.

The same argument of "induced demand" against investment in car transportation applies to all infrastructure including transit and even water... if you build it, they will come and more people moving around brings with it greater expense and a whole bunch of other expensive problems..

People have adapted to the existing transportation system, settlement patterns are largely established... it is what it is and we could just say enough is enough and accept what-is as the "full build out"

Now if we want to talk about "want", then I think the list is a good one and we should judge the merits of the projects on a cost benefit basis... and perhaps if the "benefit" is an increase in development for its own sake, then we should be taxing new developments at a higher rate in order to pay for transit.

But like the Boston 2024 proposal itself, latching onto "The Olympics" with its 4 weeks of need for transportation and housing surge to somehow justify or accelerate these pet projects is exactly why it was a bad bid.

If they don't pay for themselves by enabling increased economic activity and measurably improving quality of life then don't do them. If they will, then do them.
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:39 AM   #2465
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Re: Boston 2024

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First ... we don't "need" to do anything besides keep existing infrastructure running with maintenance.

The same argument of "induced demand" against investment in car transportation applies to all infrastructure including transit
Your opinion may differ, but you are aware that the vast majority of the people reading this forum would be thrilled to increase the use of public transit, correct? I can't figure out if you're being more pedantic or obtuse.

To state the obvious, public transportation uses significantly less energy and space than individuals in cars. More people can move around more quickly and inexpensively. This efficiency is needed to increase density without destroying the city.
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:43 AM   #2466
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Re: Boston 2024

^ The city and the region are growing, and it would be good for almost everyone if it continued to do so.
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:55 AM   #2467
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Re: Boston 2024

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That was a stupid post of mine. Please accept my apologies for the hateful tone.
Apology accepted.

And for the record, it's like ~$40B ... and like 1/4 of that is support for the Israeli, Iraqi, Egyptian and Afghan militaries..

https://www.washingtonpost.com/graph...t-foreign-aid/
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:00 AM   #2468
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Re: Boston 2024

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^ The city and the region are growing, and it would be good for almost everyone if it continued to do so.
Yes, and...

To answer tangent's question of what do we "need" requires a unified vision of what Boston should become.

Without that unified vision of what Boston should become, there's no way to answer the question of what we do or don't need.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:20 AM   #2469
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Re: Boston 2024

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People have adapted to the existing transportation system, settlement patterns are largely established... it is what it is and we could just say enough is enough and accept what-is as the "full build out"
When rush hour on 93 south of the city lasts until 11am regularly, then nope, not gonna accept what-is as the full build out.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:31 AM   #2470
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Re: Boston 2024

^ we as a society get to decide what is and isn't acceptable.

Supply and demand works fine for price setting of toothpaste tubes at the supermarket.

When it comes to jobs, families, long-term health of people and ecosystems, the environment,...supply and demand also works, if you're willing to accept a decades-long time horizon where serious casualty happens in the mean time.

Yes, as dominus suggest, we do get to demand that rush "hour" not be 4 hours long. Ya i know the counterargument: "just move elsewhere if you don't like it"...but:

Bargaining is assymetric when it comes to this stuff. I can't just "not buy" my commute on a given morning because my job is not instantly portable, my family not instantly movable. I am indeed at the mercy of my city. These assymetries of bargaining power are exactly how sweatshops exploit labor elsewhere: they put people into asymmetric situations where they have no other near-term choice.

Just like we get to have an opinion on normative things like whether robbery should be illegal...we get to have an opinion on other dimensions of "what Boston should be". But shame on us if we can't unify this vision, at least to consensus-type levels.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:40 AM   #2471
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Re: Boston 2024

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Originally Posted by CSTH View Post
^ The city and the region are growing, and it would be good for almost everyone if it continued to do so.

How the population grows is more important than whether the population grows... and there should be a limit otherwise it really is zero sum and nobody wins
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Old 08-14-2017, 11:22 AM   #2472
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Re: Boston 2024

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Originally Posted by DominusNovus View Post
When rush hour on 93 south of the city lasts until 11am regularly, then nope, not gonna accept what-is as the full build out.
93's rush hours can be evidence of a lot of things--growth, success in spreading the peak, or just plain underpricing of road capacity Until there's a price-based mechanism for allocating scarce things (highway capacity) I don't think it evidences much except that we waste a lot of people's time in traffic (or re-arranging their day to avoid traffic) because we're unwilling to price roads.

Stasis is not an option...too risky a knife's edge that too easily falls into decline (Visiting places like Worcester, Springfield, Rochester, Buffallo really drives this home)

But 93 is also a radial commuting route...something that'd be better accommodated by 10~15 minute CR headways at Rush Hour and 20~30 min headways off-peak.
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:35 PM   #2473
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Re: Boston 2024

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Originally Posted by bigpicture7 View Post
Bargaining is assymetric when it comes to this stuff. I can't just "not buy" my commute on a given morning because my job is not instantly portable, my family not instantly movable. I am indeed at the mercy of my city. These assymetries of bargaining power are exactly how sweatshops exploit labor elsewhere: they put people into asymmetric situations where they have no other near-term choice.
Welcome to 2017. We're pretty much there.
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:59 PM   #2474
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Re: Boston 2024

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Welcome to 2017. We're pretty much there.
Not sure if you meant we are pretty much @ sweatshops, or pretty much at instantly portable jobs and families.

If you meant the latter, I actually think that's one of the bigger fallacies of modern times. Sure we have a lot of tech to deal with telecommuting, but there's still a huge premium placed on in-person interactions. Plus, be careful about the privilege assumed by what you imply - even in high-tech times where white collar workers can telecommute, high-touch, in-person service work is still a big part of the urban workforce...and these are the people that often live far from the city core.

If you have a job that you can quit instantly for a better one, on a whim, whenever/wherever...or one for which you never need to leave your house...then congrats to you. But for most, the labor market is more bargaining-power-asymmetric than product markets. The customers actually rule when it comes to cereal, shoes, clothes, etc. Not so with jobs.

Plus, if no one needed to commute into or work within our city, then we wouldn't need a city (or transit, or buildings, or parks)...it could just be like The Matrix where we're all just plugged into a pod : )
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Old 08-15-2017, 10:30 PM   #2475
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Re: Boston 2024

The main/original point wasn't that we don't need transit for getting around or to make people's lives better, the point was we didn't need a four week surge in demand by athletes, press and visitors to and from temporary venues to create a justification to create permanent infrastructure... we should build what we need to support the kind of long term development we want. Or not.

Boston 2024 should have been treated like planning logistics for an event, because that is what it is.
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Old Yesterday, 06:21 AM   #2476
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Re: Boston 2024

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Originally Posted by tangent View Post
The main/original point wasn't that we don't need transit for getting around or to make people's lives better, the point was we didn't need a four week surge in demand by athletes, press and visitors to and from temporary venues to create a justification to create permanent infrastructure... we should build what we need to support the kind of long term development we want. Or not.

Boston 2024 should have been treated like planning logistics for an event, because that is what it is.
I don't disagree, but just to clarify, I took the liberty of assuming that this thread was a bit less constrained now that the olympics are dead...

And so I took the opportunity to point out that we have no other funding vehicle remotely visible on the horizon for any of the things I listed. And that that's sad.

(if there are such potential funds and I'm just not aware, feel free to brighten my day)
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Old Yesterday, 07:00 PM   #2477
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Re: Boston 2024

It would seem the projects now proposed + permitted will have us reaching a place where our transit will need to be running with extreme reliability, and several of the most intelligent add-ons contained in your future T maps moving forward.
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Old Yesterday, 08:01 PM   #2478
DominusNovus
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Re: Boston 2024

Quote:
Originally Posted by tangent View Post
The main/original point wasn't that we don't need transit for getting around or to make people's lives better, the point was we didn't need a four week surge in demand by athletes, press and visitors to and from temporary venues to create a justification to create permanent infrastructure... we should build what we need to support the kind of long term development we want. Or not.

Boston 2024 should have been treated like planning logistics for an event, because that is what it is.
Given how long its taken us to build anything transit related, I can't help but think that a kick in the pants to build out our infrastructure would be useful.
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Old Yesterday, 09:41 PM   #2479
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Re: Boston 2024

At the risk of ending up slicing my wrists, I'll bite: What "funding vehicle" was available to pay for transit upgrades / improvements / additions due to the Olympics (tm) coming to Boston?

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Originally Posted by bigpicture7 View Post

... I took the opportunity to point out that we have no other funding vehicle remotely visible on the horizon for any of the things I listed. And that that's sad.

(if there are such potential funds and I'm just not aware, feel free to brighten my day)
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Old Today, 06:35 AM   #2480
bigpicture7
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Re: Boston 2024

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At the risk of ending up slicing my wrists, I'll bite: What "funding vehicle" was available to pay for transit upgrades / improvements / additions due to the Olympics (tm) coming to Boston?
No viable one, John.

There wasn't a viable one before Boston2024, there wasn't a viable one via Boston2024, and there isn't a viable one now.
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