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  #61  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 1:12 PM
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York Region has terrible public transit and is a much closer model to the US than it is to Toronto. Heavy investment in large capital projects (fancy bus lanes), followed up by terrible service provided on the huge infrastructure investment.

It's modal share, while higher than most of the US, is much more similar. And it's because the city doesn't fund operating, cutting funding regularly.

Brampton has strong suburban transit. York Region doesn't.

Honestly, for Americans, Brampton is probably the best bet for a comparison. Strong transit ridership, huge high capacity arterials, no subway system to feed into, essentially exclusively low density housing forms. No significant student base to hold a base level of ridership. Huge amounts of highway infrastructure. Dispersed travel destinations and employment nodes, focused mostly on industrial and warehousing employment. Yet one of the highest ridership transit systems in the country. Because the city spends money to provide high frequency, reliable transit service.

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.7267...7i16384!8i8192

a bus route on this street carried over 20,000 passengers a day in 2019.

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.6516...7i16384!8i8192

This bus carries 15,000 daily passengers

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.6559...7i16384!8i8192

This street is currently getting an LRT built on it.

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.6724...7i16384!8i8192

This bus carries 10,000 people a day.

If that isn't proof that good service delivers ridership, I don't know what is.
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  #62  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 4:47 PM
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Originally Posted by jtown,man View Post
The reason American transit sucks?

The people. I said it.

American transit attracts uncivil people who make others uncomfortable. When people of means have a choice, they usually choose to stay comfortable.

All the headway cuts and service additions in the world aren't gonna attract people ot transit when they have better, more comfortable options.

Of course this is a chicken or the egg situation I suppose. If transit was made a lot better, maybe more civil people would ride transit which would dilute the idiots? I don't know.
I watched people do heroin on the subway in Milan, and a man pantomimed cunnilingus at my 12 year old sister in Paris. Any major city is going to bring people of all stripes (and mental faculties) into close contact with one another.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crawford View Post

The most disturbing incident I ever witnessed on public transit was in Paris. Actually I've witnessed a couple of extremely disturbing incidents on Paris Metro/RER. Yet ridership is sky-high. In the U.S., SF is legendary for bum/junkie issues on public transit, yet ridership is second highest in the U.S., I believe.

The main difference is that in the U.S., it's typically easiest to get around by private vehicle. Even if PT riders were all fantastically behaved, I don't think typical households would even consider PT.
Yea the Paris metro is something else. Another time I was there I witnessed two pick pocketing incidents in a single day--groups of teens rushing commuters and grabbing their bags/cell phones. But, as you said, still packed with riders.
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  #63  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 5:23 PM
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People do act out on the RER a lot.
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  #64  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 6:14 PM
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RER is certainly a freakshow in certain places and at certain times. A lousy first introduction to Paris.
Even Montreal's metro has its fair share of weirdos.
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  #65  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 6:18 PM
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Originally Posted by jd3189 View Post
Despite this being a contributing factor, the video was clear in showing that most American transit systems are mainly built to get you between downtown and a random outer suburb.

Traffic patterns should probably be analyzed in order to provide public transportation that is relevant to the working class. Once that happens, it can be sustainable and yield more development in the future.
But that’s because most Americans are travelling between their office or workplace downtown and their home in a random outer suburb. The problem is the cities, not just the public transit systems.
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  #66  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 6:33 PM
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Originally Posted by MolsonExport View Post
RER is certainly a freakshow in certain places and at certain times. A lousy first introduction to Paris.
Even Montreal's metro has its fair share of weirdos.
I was coming from London before my first trip to Paris and the first experience was a shock. A guy started to urinate right in the middle of a busy corridor in a RER station and no one seemed to care.

I've been living in São Paulo for 8 years now, without a car. I use public transit everyday, zero problems. Paris transit really disappointed me and I didn't have high expectations in this regard.
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  #67  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 6:58 PM
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when was the last time any of you took public transportation? I had to think about it, for me it has been about 21 months.
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  #68  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 7:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
I think there's an element of truth here, but it's an oversimplification.

The most disturbing incident I ever witnessed on public transit was in Paris. Actually I've witnessed a couple of extremely disturbing incidents on Paris Metro/RER. Yet ridership is sky-high. In the U.S., SF is legendary for bum/junkie issues on public transit, yet ridership is second highest in the U.S., I believe.

The main difference is that in the U.S., it's typically easiest to get around by private vehicle. Even if PT riders were all fantastically behaved, I don't think typical households would even consider PT.
Buses always have had a colorful reputation no matter where but here in Houston, our rail has a shitty reputation for shuffling some pretty nasty vagrants around town. I don't like my wife taking it alone. In Paris or New York, the 'normal' people far outweigh the crazies so less stigma taking transit.
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  #69  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 7:24 PM
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Originally Posted by JManc View Post
Buses always have had a colorful reputation no matter where but here in Houston, our rail has a shitty reputation for shuffling some pretty nasty vagrants around town. I don't like my wife taking it alone. In Paris or New York, the 'normal' people far outweigh the crazies so less stigma taking transit.
Chicken meet Egg.

The 'normal' people riding doesn't happen because the system is otherwise empty and ridden by no one.

You have to choose to use the system, setting an example for your fellow 'normies' LOL..........

Then things fall into place.

Of course, that requires sufficiently attractive service; and likely some disincentives on the other side (cost of parking for example).
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  #70  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 8:18 PM
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The reason American public transit usage is so small and the service {except for a small hand full of cities} is so bad is because American's view PT as a SOCIAL service and not an ESSENTIAL one.

Most Americans would rather be seen entering a porn shop than boarding a bus. Transit in the US is seen as something only poor and black people use and hence is avoided by the vast majority of Americans as it carries with it a stigma that you don't find in other Western countries. Not only does this greatly inhibit usage but also public and political support as politicians are not concerned about poorer and black people who tend to vote less but rather wealthier white suburban voters.

Added to this is the strong sense of individualism that you get in the US, where communal anything is often seen as socialism which in the US is a four letter word even by most Democrats.
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  #71  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 8:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stay Stoked Brah View Post
when was the last time any of you took public transportation?
i took the el downtown a week and a half ago.

i could've ridden my bike, but i'm always very leery of street-locking my bike downtown for extended periods of time.
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  #72  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 9:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssiguy View Post
The reason American public transit usage is so small and the service {except for a small hand full of cities} is so bad is because American's view PT as a SOCIAL service and not an ESSENTIAL one.

Most Americans would rather be seen entering a porn shop than boarding a bus. Transit in the US is seen as something only poor and black people use and hence is avoided by the vast majority of Americans as it carries with it a stigma that you don't find in other Western countries. Not only does this greatly inhibit usage but also public and political support as politicians are not concerned about poorer and black people who tend to vote less but rather wealthier white suburban voters.

Added to this is the strong sense of individualism that you get in the US, where communal anything is often seen as socialism which in the US is a four letter word even by most Democrats.

C'mon now, these kind of sanctimonious caricaturizations about the US aren't particularly accurate or insightful, and don't much help the conversation.
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  #73  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 9:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stay Stoked Brah View Post
when was the last time any of you took public transportation? I had to think about it, for me it has been about 21 months.
Before the pandemic hit in March.
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  #74  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 9:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stay Stoked Brah View Post
when was the last time any of you took public transportation? I had to think about it, for me it has been about 21 months.
Last month. I have only used it a handful of times during the pandemic, but I commute daily on the subway in normal times.
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  #75  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 9:51 PM
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I read through as much of this as I could stomach and once again almost none of it feels familiar or correct about transit in my city, San Francisco, pre-COVID, except the comments about some of the ridership being "freaks".

Pre-COVID, and I wouldn't know about now because I'm not riding either as a matter of virus protection, transit was crowded--often packed actually--and quite effective as a means of getting around if you were willing to put up with the occasional smelly homeless person standing or plopping himself next to you (almost never having paid the fare).

As I've said, also, the city standard is no one having to walk more than 2 blocks from home to catch a bus or train and the busiest lines operate as often as every 8 minutes.

My own home is on 3 bus lines currently being coverted to a BRT system. 2 train stations are within easy walking distance (both have the Muni light rail subway system, one has BART heavy commuter rail). I do not feel the need of a car and do not have one at my SF condo.

I really doubt any city in Canada has a better system than ours. New York does, Paris and London probably (I haven't tried those). But we are not a national capital or even a national financial capital though we are regional one.
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  #76  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Pedestrian View Post
I really doubt any city in Canada has a better system than ours. New York does, Paris and London probably (I haven't tried those). But we are not a national capital or even a national financial capital though we are regional one.
London might have the best bus system in the world. I can't think of another city that I think is better.

I've used buses in SF quite a bit, and it doesn't feel materially different than New York. But NY most excels over SF (and every other city in North America) with rail transit.
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  #77  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 10:55 PM
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Originally Posted by iheartthed View Post
Last month. I have only used it a handful of times during the pandemic, but I commute daily on the subway in normal times.
Wow! I'm surprised. you live in NY and you last took public transit last month? September 30th was 27 days ago. I get it that you can walk everywhere for groceries and most things in NY, but wow!
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  #78  
Old Posted Oct 26, 2020, 11:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Stay Stoked Brah View Post
Wow! I'm surprised. you live in NY and you last took public transit last month? September 30th was 27 days ago. I get it that you can walk everywhere for groceries and most things in NY, but wow!
Yeah, everything except work is within walking distance.
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  #79  
Old Posted Oct 27, 2020, 12:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Innsertnamehere View Post
York Region has terrible public transit and is a much closer model to the US than it is to Toronto. Heavy investment in large capital projects (fancy bus lanes), followed up by terrible service provided on the huge infrastructure investment.

It's modal share, while higher than most of the US, is much more similar. And it's because the city doesn't fund operating, cutting funding regularly.

Brampton has strong suburban transit. York Region doesn't.

Honestly, for Americans, Brampton is probably the best bet for a comparison. Strong transit ridership, huge high capacity arterials, no subway system to feed into, essentially exclusively low density housing forms. No significant student base to hold a base level of ridership. Huge amounts of highway infrastructure. Dispersed travel destinations and employment nodes, focused mostly on industrial and warehousing employment. Yet one of the highest ridership transit systems in the country. Because the city spends money to provide high frequency, reliable transit service.

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.7267...7i16384!8i8192

a bus route on this street carried over 20,000 passengers a day in 2019.

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.6516...7i16384!8i8192

This bus carries 15,000 daily passengers

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.6559...7i16384!8i8192

This street is currently getting an LRT built on it.

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.6724...7i16384!8i8192

This bus carries 10,000 people a day.

If that isn't proof that good service delivers ridership, I don't know what is.
Good service is part of it, as is built environment.

those roads are pseudo-highways. very few cross streets, few stoplights, probably little traffic, wholly residential uses (from which to draw riders, while truck and commercial traffic is far less), and relatively high speeds. optimal for buses.

all those warehouse and light industrial jobs are in the same location. I'm guessing that the people working in those jobs can easily take a bus to somewhere within the larger employment concentration.

adding frequency won't be a panacea if the employment and residential uses are more intermixed, or where the road arrangement is less linear.
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  #80  
Old Posted Oct 27, 2020, 1:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedestrian View Post

I really doubt any city in Canada has a better system than ours. New York does, Paris and London probably (I haven't tried those). But we are not a national capital or even a national financial capital though we are regional one.
Toronto and Montreal are certainly at least on par, if not a bit better.
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