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Old 03-29-2015, 06:27 PM   #21
davem
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Re: Tremont Street Tunnel, the Silver Line, D-E and retiring Copley Junction

I wish I had more time to respond to everything, but in particular I'd like to address this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alon View Post
I really dislike that last idea. It creates a situation in which the inner segments have less frequency than the combined one between Brookline Village and Newton Highlands. If there's a D-E connection, pick one route to use, Boylston or Huntington, and reduce the other one to a frequent short-turn (not a shuttle - it should go all the way to Park Street). If the capacity relief is enough that it's possible to time the shuttle to meet trains at Brookline, then all the better.
Below I've put the blue book boardings for each of the effected stations. The first number is how many "lines" are serving each station now, the second is how many would serve it under new routes as follows:
(A) Reservoir - West Medford via Boylston
(B) Boston College - Park via Boylston
(C) Cleveland Circle - Government Center via Boylston
(D) Riverside - Union Square via Boylston
(E) Heath Street - Union Square via Huntington
(F) Dudley - Government Center
(G) Needham - Seaport via Huntington
(H) Seaport - West Medford
(The northern/western terminals are just ideas)

1-1 Riverside: 2241
1-1 Woodland: 957
1-1 Waban: 545
1-1 Eliot: 814
1-2 Newton Highlands 1627
1-2 Newton Centre: 1891
1-2 Chestnut Hill: 1416
1-3 Reservoir: 3404
1-1/2* Beaconsfield: 1075
1-1/2* Brookline Hills: 1225
1-3 Brookline Village: 3230
1-2 Longwood: 2719
1-2 Fenway: 3488
------------
1-1 Heath Street: 820
1-1 Back of the Hill: 35
1-2 Riverway - Fenwood Road**: 1264
1-2 Brigham Circle: 2547 (count from 2007)
1-2 Longwood Medical: 3813
1-2 MFA: 1683
1-2 Northeastern: 2650
1-2 Symphony: 1711
1-2 Prudential: 3643
------------
3-4 Kenmore: 9503
3-4 Hynes: 8946
4-4 Copley: 14021
4-4 Arlington: 8519
------------
X-2 Back Bay: 18100
X-4 Tufts Medical (Bay Village): 6106 (Would be much higher with transfers to/from the Dudley and Seaport lines

*Would be expressed by the (D) and possibly the (G)
** If the connector happens, these stations would be combined into one
X = Served by the Orange Line

This is full build, but as you can see, with reroutings happening by extending and connecting the Huntington Subway to the Highland Branch, you actually get a net gain in trains per hour at the stations that deserve it, while the smaller stations get the same or less service.

Additionally, without the bottleneck at Copley Junction and the ability to use the four tracks Boylston-Park to sort and hold trains, you can run an extra set through the Boylston Subway. The (B) would have to turn at Park due to unreliable headways, but that's still a win since the majority of reliable trains are getting through-routed.

TL;DR: The Boylston subway gets the same amount of service, and actually an increase at Kenmore and Hynes. Huntington gets double service, as do the heavy ridership stations in Newton. Trains don't fill up as fast, run more frequently, and serve where service is required.



I'll quickly touch on this too, since my plan includes a Seaport connection:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alon View Post
You're extending it in the wrong direction. If you're trying to connect the convention center with South Station, North Station, and Back Bay, the correct way to do that is to have people walk from the convention center to South Station and Downtown Crossing. All of this is walking distance. The only way rail makes sense is if there's something farther out that's worth connecting to, and there isn't.
You seem to be ignoring the Fort Point channel in your analysis. Walking distance doesn't really matter when you have to cross a barren, windy, and half the year fridgid bridge. This is a HUGE psychological factor. Also, I really have to ask when the last time you visited the Seaport in person was. It's already pretty crowded with pedestrians, and will only continue to as the build out continues (you keep referencing the parking lots - they are not long for this world). That area is going to be nearly as dense as parts of downtown soon, and possibly have more nightlife. A single rail connection (that could then navigate the rest of the light rail system, unlike the buses) is hugely beneficial. It's not like we're arguing for a real subway (which would be overkill), but trolleys make perfect sense here.

Also regarding the Seaport, I think you are overblowing the half mile figure. In downtown Boston, a quarter mile is the defacto station spacing. Its what people are used to, its how our system is set up, and in a larger context its really what people are more comfortable walking, especially when crossing a waterway is involved. For commuting from your home in residential areas, yes, a half mile makes sense. But in a work/live/play neighborhood, a quarter mile is where its at. If you have to walk a half mile to your local subway station, then walk another half mile at the other end (at least, Harpoon, etc is way further), you're probably just going to drive. I would.
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Last edited by davem; 03-29-2015 at 06:55 PM.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:54 PM   #22
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

Quote:
You're extending it in the wrong direction. If you're trying to connect the convention center with South Station, North Station, and Back Bay, the correct way to do that is to have people walk from the convention center to South Station and Downtown Crossing. All of this is walking distance. The only way rail makes sense is if there's something farther out that's worth connecting to, and there isn't.

Isn't the South Boston Transitway underneath Seaport Boulevard or have I screwed that up?

If it is, this statement seems to imply that the point of building the green line Phase I- as discussed here- is for the purpose of connecting the convention center to the rest of the transit system. In fact the idea, as I understand it, is to connect the green line to the Transitway which is primarily underneath Seaport Boulevard. I think this is in practice and people's mind's what many consider the heart of the Seaport district. Summer Street and the convention center are part of the Transitway catchment and I would not advocate doing anything more to increase transit to those streets directly.

The Convention Center is not the motive of this. Integrating the big and growing commercial and residential area that is the Seaport district into the wider T system is.
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:05 PM   #23
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

Transitmass, Courthouse is under Seaport Blvd, while WTC and SLW are roughly halfway between Seaport Blvd and Summer Street.
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Old 03-29-2015, 09:13 PM   #24
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

What about light rail access to South Boston and the City Point area? Either through the old 9 line through Broadway station or from the terminated SL3 route, but as a light rail exiting the transitway on D and Summer St, and continuing onto Broadway. The SL3 option connects the convention center along the way. Are these feasible ideas?
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Old 03-29-2015, 09:32 PM   #25
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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Originally Posted by asap_mozart View Post
What about light rail access to South Boston and the City Point area? Either through the old 9 line through Broadway station or from the terminated SL3 route, but as a light rail exiting the transitway on D and Summer St, and continuing onto Broadway. The SL3 option connects the convention center along the way. Are these feasible ideas?
I feel like going down the old SL3 route would be best, although it should continue south to East Broadway in order to actually serve the residential parts of Southie instead of the industrial port facilities that it ran along before.
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Old 03-29-2015, 10:08 PM   #26
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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Originally Posted by deh74 View Post
I feel like going down the old SL3 route would be best, although it should continue south to East Broadway in order to actually serve the residential parts of Southie instead of the industrial port facilities that it ran along before.
Politically, there isn't going to be a streetcar returning the Southie street grid. Have a short stub line going out of the current SLW to Marine Industrial Park to a loop at the the City Point bus terminal. Southie bus ridership should be funneled between Broadway, Andrew and the City Point terminal. Beef up bus frequencies to serve the stations on the periphery.
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Old 03-30-2015, 05:37 AM   #27
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

Alon: Just saying people should walk misses the point of transit entirely; you may as well just drive. I think you are looking at transit from a too narrow statistical view. You said you aren't a fan of the 7 line extension in NYC but you do realize that transit spurs growth? Queens was farmland before the subways were built. Even though it's roughly a half mile from 8th/42nd to the Hudson Yards area, which is the same as from South Station to the Convention Center, just telling commuters to walk will do nothing to encourage development and just put more demand on existing transit.

Worcester Line: The Worcester Line is a commuter rail line and even if headways were increased to 15 min people will take the subway over it unless they live and work near by. Commuters will still have to transfer (and pay) at Back Bay or South Station and we all know transfers discourage transit usage. Looking at the growth in Green Line ridership and the constraints of the existing tunnels there is nothing you could do to the Worcester Line that would effect the Green Line enough to stem the tide. The Worcester Line only parallels the Green Line from Allston to Back Bay and it's not like you could take the Green Line to Kenmore and transfer to the Worcester Line.

People look at commuter rail and subways differently and use them differently. This is the problem they are running into with Fairmont; they need to upgrade it to DMU with subway like headways AND sell it as such rather than just adding a few new stations to get people to know its there and use it.
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Old 03-30-2015, 06:37 AM   #28
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

What happens to the Silver Line after all of this? Does the T upgrade a couple key bus routes as replacement lines, or do you guys think they'll be phased out altogether once the funding is present for rail along all the silver line corridors?
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Old 03-30-2015, 08:46 AM   #29
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

cbrett, the SL4 and the SL5 which run primarily on Washington street would be totally replaced by a new green line route from the Tremont tunnel to Dudley Square (often referred to here as the potential "F-line"). Since these buses are basically just normal 60 foot articulated buses that the T uses in the rest of the fleet (can someone confirm this?) they could be repainted and used elsewhere in the T system or otherwise retired.

The SL1/SL2 and the soon to be opend Silver Line Gateway travel in the South Boston Transitway to the airport, the design center and to Chelsea respectively. These routes would continue to use the South Boston Transitway and would not be displaced by connecting the green line to the South Boston Transitway tunnel. The trains and the buses would actually share the tunnel.

This is definitely feasible. The Transitway tunnels were built with a light rail conversion in mind and their dimensions are sufficient. Rail would basically be added to the roadway in there. In case you are wondering there are definitely examples of tunnels that run both light rail trains and buses, Seattle is a great example. That's not to say that it wouldn't take some tweaking but don't let anyone tell you it's technologically impossible.

As for the Transitway I think tunnel under D is a definite requisite for this; signal light prioritization won't cut it for mixed buses and train.

So in summary, the silver line would continue to exist for the SL1 the SL2 and the Silver Line Gateway. Frankly, it will give it more legitimacy because it will be the only buses on the T system that use their own dedicated busway (i.e. the Transitway) warranting a color designation as opposed to now where half the silver line system does have some BRT components (SL1 and SL2) and the other half of the system (SL4 and SL5) is nothing more than a silver painted bus with a subway fare.
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:08 AM   #30
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

Quote:
Originally Posted by cbrett
What happens to the Silver Line after all of this? Does the T upgrade a couple key bus routes as replacement lines, or do you guys think they'll be phased out altogether once the funding is present for rail along all the silver line corridors?
LRV and BRT can run in the Transitway together (and will need to if the South Station - Logan connection is to be maintained).

Elsewhere, the Silver Line model (whether the branding is kept or not) should be expanded to all of the key bus routes across the city. I disagree [edited] that we should railstitute all of those routes. The era of the mixed-vehicle streetcar is over, and its benefits over high-quality and frequent busses are not immediately apparent to me (contrary to my impulsive screen name ). Streetcars should go where they can be in a reservation, with only very minimal mixed-vehicle running. If the community is fighting for that sort of thing then do it, but it's not worth expending political capital on a mixed-ROW streetcar project when high quality busses provide similar levels of service.

"Silver Line" all those routes. Curb extensions for the bus stops; stretches of dedicated bus lanes; purchase a fleet of articulated busses to serve those corridors; build a maintenance facility that can support them; institute PoP; enforce rules for bus lanes/bus stops; run these BRT-lite routes (because that's what the Washington St SL is... it's not real BRT...) at high frequencies along all the key bus routes.

Last edited by BussesAin'tTrains; 03-30-2015 at 02:01 PM.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:01 AM   #31
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

I'm not so sure that there isn't a role for mixed traffic streetcars at all within a transportation ecosystem. I do agree that simply replacing heavy bus routes with mixed traffic streetcars is both ineffective and a waste of money. Moreover, the trend favoring streetcars now definitely has a tinge of elitism to it because, while they don't by themselves provide a higher level of service, they just "look better" and “feel better” than a bus to a demographic of people who probably don't rely on public transit in the first place.

One objective argument in their favor is that the infrastructure feels more permanent than a bus- which it is. This in turn encourages development along the route because of increased land values. I suppose this could be an achievable objective on its own but if all you’re doing is replacing heavily traveled bus routes with a streetcar to spur development or prop up land values and not actually providing a better transit service than I think that is wrongheaded.

With that being said I do still think there are circumstances in which mixed traffic streetcars work and work well. For example, if you think about it Boston’s subway was kind of like the 19th/early 20th century version of BRT. The trolleys traveled in mixed traffic and, while this was horribly congested and slow, they eventually made it to their own grade separated right of way (i.e. the tunnel) which made them an effective means of rapid transit.

Now in the context of the green line reconfiguration as discussed here- assuming that the Huntington Ave tunnel is buried and portals are built so that E trains could access the Huntington Ave tunnel on South Huntington Avenue- I think an Arborway restoration to Forest Hills makes sense; even if it is mixed traffic (i.e. without a median reservation or dedicated lanes).

My logic is that even if the green line trains muddle through in mixed traffic from Forest Hills to Huntington Ave, this will be made up for the fact that they will then enter an underground grade separated right of way that zips them into downtown Boston. This would be a huge advantage to the riders on this route and it will always be something that the 39 bus can’t replicate.

Add onto this the fact that the neighborhood mostly wants this restoration and that it will encourage developments/increase land values because of the perceived permanence of the mode and I think you have an example of a limited circumstance where a mixed streetcar would be a major upgrade over a bus.

For the record I would be happy to see an Arborway restoration that has a median reservation (like Comm ave or Beacon) or dedicated lanes built at the expense of parking and travel lane for cars but if that proves infeasible politically then mixed traffic would still be suitable.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:30 AM   #32
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

Quote:
Originally Posted by BussesAin'tTrains View Post
Politically, there isn't going to be a streetcar returning the Southie street grid. Have a short stub line going out of the current SLW to Marine Industrial Park to a loop at the the City Point bus terminal. Southie bus ridership should be funneled between Broadway, Andrew and the City Point terminal. Beef up bus frequencies to serve the stations on the periphery.
I'd be a lot more supportive of this idea if the City Point bus terminal was an actual terminal, or indeed, even just a real place beyond a bus parking lot in the middle of nowhere on the outskirts of Southie.

Keep the actual bus storage where it is now, but I'd move the "terminal" (e.g., the end of the route) from the corner of 1st & O over to Castle Island (unless Sullivan's pitches a fit about buses in "their" parking lot and whines to a politician, in which case, put it at the corner of Day Blvd and Columbia Road instead).
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:35 AM   #33
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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I'm not so sure that there isn't a role for mixed traffic streetcars at all within a transportation ecosystem. I do agree that simply replacing heavy bus routes with mixed traffic streetcars is both ineffective and a waste of money. Moreover, the trend favoring streetcars now definitely has a tinge of elitism to it because, while they don't by themselves provide a higher level of service, they just "look better" and “feel better” than a bus to a demographic of people who probably don't rely on public transit in the first place.

One objective argument in their favor is that the infrastructure feels more permanent than a bus- which it is. This in turn encourages development along the route because of increased land values. I suppose this could be an achievable objective on its own but if all you’re doing is replacing heavily traveled bus routes with a streetcar to spur development or prop up land values and not actually providing a better transit service than I think that is wrongheaded.

With that being said I do still think there are circumstances in which mixed traffic streetcars work and work well. For example, if you think about it Boston’s subway was kind of like the 19th/early 20th century version of BRT. The trolleys traveled in mixed traffic and, while this was horribly congested and slow, they eventually made it to their own grade separated right of way (i.e. the tunnel) which made them an effective means of rapid transit.

Now in the context of the green line reconfiguration as discussed here- assuming that the Huntington Ave tunnel is buried and portals are built so that E trains could access the Huntington Ave tunnel on South Huntington Avenue- I think an Arborway restoration to Forest Hills makes sense; even if it is mixed traffic (i.e. without a median reservation or dedicated lanes).

My logic is that even if the green line trains muddle through in mixed traffic from Forest Hills to Huntington Ave, this will be made up for the fact that they will then enter an underground grade separated right of way that zips them into downtown Boston. This would be a huge advantage to the riders on this route and it will always be something that the 39 bus can’t replicate.

Add onto this the fact that the neighborhood mostly wants this restoration and that it will encourage developments/increase land values because of the perceived permanence of the mode and I think you have an example of a limited circumstance where a mixed streetcar would be a major upgrade over a bus.

For the record I would be happy to see an Arborway restoration that has a median reservation (like Comm ave or Beacon) or dedicated lanes built at the expense of parking and travel lane for cars but if that proves infeasible politically then mixed traffic would still be suitable.
For the record, I agree with this. My fantasy map does include a restoration of the JP trolley to Forest Hills (assuming E is buried to Brigham or Heath). I've removed the A-line restoration from my latest fantasy maps though, for a number of reasons.

I do think that it would be very difficult to extend a Dudley branch much farther than Dudley. I've toyed with the idea of bringing it down Warren to Blue Hill Ave (the pinch on Warren might be the immovable political obstacle). Obviously BHA has a wonderful wide ROW that looks ripe for LRT. But the distances involved with at-grade service (from the Mass Pike in the South End to --potentially-- Mattapan) will be difficult to dispatch. It's a lot further than the B-line (~6.5 miles vs ~3.3 miles), which is currently the longest streetcar line and the most unreliable. The D-Line is longer obviously, but it isn't a streetcar. To serve that corridor better I would instead focus on beefing up the 28 even more, running xMUs on Fairmount with regular bus connections, and look at cannibalizing the Mattapan line for an RLX with stops at Milton and Mattapan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Commuting Boston Student View Post
I'd be a lot more supportive of this idea if the City Point bus terminal was an actual terminal, or indeed, even just a real place beyond a bus parking lot in the middle of nowhere on the outskirts of Southie.

Keep the actual bus storage where it is now, but I'd move the "terminal" (e.g., the end of the route) from the corner of 1st & O over to Castle Island (unless Sullivan's pitches a fit about buses in "their" parking lot and whines to a politician, in which case, put it at the corner of Day Blvd and Columbia Road instead).
That could work too. Keep in mind that 1st Street will spruce up a lot once MassPort/DOT builds the limited access haul road from the terminal to the Seaport, removing the heavy shipping traffic from the local streets and ginning up development in the area.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:46 AM   #34
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

Quote:
Originally Posted by BussesAin'tTrains View Post
Elsewhere, the Silver Line model (whether the branding is kept or not) should be expanded to all of the key bus routes across the city. I disagree with Alon that we should railstitute all of those routes. The era of the mixed-vehicle streetcar is over, and its benefits over high-quality and frequent busses are not immediately apparent to me (contrary to my impulsive screen name ).
I think you misread what he wrote. By "railstitute", Alon means building a subway or dedicated right-of-way.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Alon
Of course it isn't! But I'm also not sold on the branch to Harvard. Allston-Cambridge service is circumferential, so it's better to just go the whole way on a circumferential line and build one, underground, all the way from Harvard (or Sullivan, even) to Dudley (or JFK-UMass, even). It railstitutes the 66 and the 1, and, if it goes to JFK-UMass, offers a rail-rail connection that can take some ridership off the 23.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alon
However, dedicated lanes for light rail are a must. Mixed-traffic streetcars are a terrible idea on so many levels: they get stuck behind stopped cars, and they are supposed to carry many more passengers than a car but don't even get priority. It's something that's come out of discussions on a few transit blogs, mainly Human Transit: streetcars do not actually provide an improvement over buses.
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Old 03-30-2015, 11:07 AM   #35
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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I think you misread what he wrote. By "railstitute", Alon means building a subway or dedicated right-of-way.
Thanks for that. Must have missed it while I was scanning the thread.

Not sure where I'd find more subways feasible aside from the frequently discussed Green-Transitway connector; burying the B to BU; burying the E to Brigham/D-E connector/Heath St; green under the Charles to a Red connection at Harvard (using existing tunnels); along the Pike retaining wall to from Tremont St subway to Back Bay/Huntington Ave subway.

And even all of that relatively "easy" tunneling is nuts in our current environment.
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Old 03-30-2015, 11:14 AM   #36
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

Its so easy to go on a tangent once you start thinking about all the possibilities, but let's try to keep this focused on the green line and transit way.

As for blue hill ave, the only way a streetcar would work is either with a transfer at Dudley (so its two lines dispatched separately) or if you buried it from the Pike to Dudley. I'm honestly not sure if a tunnel would have enough bang for the buck, though, and as alluded to above there are many more tunnels that should take priority.
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Old 03-30-2015, 02:00 PM   #37
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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Its so easy to go on a tangent once you start thinking about all the possibilities, but let's try to keep this focused on the green line and transit way.
Yes. Sorry. I was thinking about moving my comment to the Bus/BRT thread, but got distracted.

Quote:
As for blue hill ave, the only way a streetcar would work is either with a transfer at Dudley (so its two lines dispatched separately) or if you buried it from the Pike to Dudley. I'm honestly not sure if a tunnel would have enough bang for the buck, though, and as alluded to above there are many more tunnels that should take priority.
Agreed.
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Old 03-30-2015, 05:10 PM   #38
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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Originally Posted by vanshnookenraggen View Post
Alon: Just saying people should walk misses the point of transit entirely; you may as well just drive. I think you are looking at transit from a too narrow statistical view. You said you aren't a fan of the 7 line extension in NYC but you do realize that transit spurs growth? Queens was farmland before the subways were built. Even though it's roughly a half mile from 8th/42nd to the Hudson Yards area, which is the same as from South Station to the Convention Center, just telling commuters to walk will do nothing to encourage development and just put more demand on existing transit.
This is why I bring up Vancouver: it's the best modern example in North America of transit built to shape growth rather than to serve existing nodes. And what we see in Vancouver is the exact opposite of development-oriented transit pushed in various American cities. To wit:

1. Burnaby built Metrotown simultaneously with SkyTrain - but Metrotown lies between Downtown Vancouver and New Westminster, which was a dense secondary center even before SkyTrain. Burnaby specifically chose it to be on the way.

2. The West End has had explosive residential growth, without any rail beyond the downtown stations. It's at no point more than 2 km from downtown, so people walk or take a bus. There are no plans for extending SkyTrain there, nor is there any demand for such a plan.

3. The Canada Line is entirely a serving line rather than a shaping line: the condos and shopping centers around Richmond Centre predate it, and it took years after the line opened before Vancouver upzoned the residential stations.

4. Most commercial upzoning plans focus on areas that already were activity nodes close to transit: Downtown growth actually began in the 1970s, New West has had a lot of SkyTrain-oriented commercial growth, and now with the Canada Line and plans for a Broadway subway there are plans for more commercial growth around Central Broadway. The main exception to this is in Surrey, which is very auto-oriented precisely because it couldn't really construct a CBD around Surrey Central and King George, but instead has multiple centers well away from SkyTrain.

"Queens was farmland" is my biggest pet peeve in these discussions, and I took it apart in another thread a few days ago. Queens' population nearly doubled between 1900 and 1910, and given demographic trends that do not exist today, New York could predict continued growth, measured in millions of people. It says a lot that, on Second Avenue Sagas, when Alexander Rapp (a.k.a. Threestationsquare) and I were discussing a West Shore line for Staten Island, the debate centered on whether it could pan out in the event New York abolished all zoning restrictions and the US opened its borders. (For the record, I'm still in the no camp.) That's the level of growth required for these extensions to be worth considering.

Also, it's a full mile from Times Square to Hudson Yards, beyond walking distance.

Quote:
Worcester Line: The Worcester Line is a commuter rail line...

People look at commuter rail and subways differently and use them differently. This is the problem they are running into with Fairmont; they need to upgrade it to DMU with subway like headways AND sell it as such rather than just adding a few new stations to get people to know its there and use it.
So what if it's a commuter rail line? Just because Americans (and Canadians) invariably do commuter rail wrong doesn't mean it can't be done right. The RER lines are commuter rail. S-Bahns are commuter rail by definition. People take them when they're available because they provide frequent service, mode-neutral fares, and frequent stops. They're not even branded as just like the subway: on the contrary, they're branded as a separate urban rail system, with distinctions like RER vs. Metro and S-Bahn vs. U-Bahn. It doesn't matter, because the fares are the same, and transfers are free.

All of this is a matter of organization, except the shitty locomotives and DMUs, which are electronics. Practically no concrete is needed. This is why organization-before-electronics-before-concrete thinking is so precious in a developed country, where employing multiple conductors and pouring concrete for tunnels are expensive, but instituting mode-neutral fares is free and electrifying commuter lines is cheap.

Of course, given better organization and electronics, strategic segments of concrete - that is, the NSRL - become far more valuable.
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Old 03-30-2015, 05:13 PM   #39
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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As for blue hill ave, the only way a streetcar would work is either with a transfer at Dudley (so its two lines dispatched separately) or if you buried it from the Pike to Dudley. I'm honestly not sure if a tunnel would have enough bang for the buck, though, and as alluded to above there are many more tunnels that should take priority.
Remember when the subways were first being built: Dudley was the terminal for the elevated Orange Line (I'm just going to call it that) with a very elaborate system for trolley-to-train transfers. This worked fine as it sucked up all the trolley traffic from Roxbury and Dorchester and funneled them into the city via the el.

Because of the distances you still need that kind of feeder system. The old MTA studied burying the el along Washington St in the 1940s and even then the costs were prohibitive, which is why even back then they had ideas to reroute the Orange Line via the NY,NH&H tracks (Southwest corridor).

This is why Blue Hill Ave was such an obvious choice for Silver Line but the NIMBYs had their way with that.

If you have an F line to Dudley that's as far as it's going to go. It will be a South End local transit service only and contribute to the areas hot gentrification.
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Old 03-30-2015, 05:22 PM   #40
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Re: Green Line Reconfiguration

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It doesn't matter, because the fares are the same, and transfers are free.
That would do wonders for the T.

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Of course, given better organization and electronics, strategic segments of concrete - that is, the NSRL - become far more valuable.
But this is the whole point of this thread: there are inherent physical constraints to the Green Line that are all coming to a head with increased usage. Everything you are suggesting is just a band aid. We need new concrete to rework the existing tunnels for more efficient operations so the GL can handle the new lines, either being constructed or the ones we dream up.
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