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-   -   Are LA's rail transit expansion plans enough to shift the city away from the car? (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=249564)

SAN Man Jan 6, 2022 9:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by homebucket (Post 9495337)
LA actually has a very robust bus system. It has the 3rd largest fleet in North America (17% of which are high capacity articulated buses), and 2nd highest ridership. It has 2 BRT lines, with dedicated lanes (busways), with 3 more in the pipeline. And they will have a fully electric bus system by 2030.

The few electric busses that are on the road around here are cool. They're wrapped in a lime green color, nice and quiet.

mhays Jan 6, 2022 9:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by homebucket (Post 9495337)
LA actually has a very robust bus system. It has the 3rd largest fleet in North America (17% of which are high capacity articulated buses), and 2nd highest ridership. It has 2 BRT lines, with dedicated lanes (busways), with 3 more in the pipeline. And they will have a fully electric bus system by 2030.

Yet someone posted that buses often get stuck in traffic. And commute splits are pretty bad.

Maybe it can be a big system AND still deserve improvement.

homebucket Jan 6, 2022 9:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhays (Post 9495416)
Maybe it can be a big system AND still deserve improvement.

Sure, but you could say that about any bus system. Busses are always going to be slower per mile than trains. But they offer more flexibility in terms of routes and if something breaks down.

mhays Jan 6, 2022 10:01 PM

You're missing the point. Buses are getting stuck in traffic and they don't have to. LA could have a much better bus system if they added more dedicated lanes.

homebucket Jan 6, 2022 10:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhays (Post 9495445)
You're missing the point. Buses are getting stuck in traffic and they don't have to. LA could have a much better bus system if they added more dedicated lanes.

They already do:
https://goo.gl/maps/KMwwUwSfXvJr2QST7

And have been adding more:
https://thesource.metro.net/2021/12/...venue-in-dtla/

jmecklenborg Jan 6, 2022 10:21 PM

Dedicated lanes won't work because dedicated lanes are easiest and cheapest to establish where they are least-beneficial. They are most-needed at the busiest city intersections, but nobody's ever going to agree to wall off a 4-way intersection to give buses a fully-protected at-grade path (this is what third-world BRT systems do that the Tea Party loved so much). Building underpasses or overpasses at intersections just for buses moves at-grade stops well-away from corners and convenient transfer points. Building an underground station just for buses at a transfer point is theoretically possible but horrendously expensive - certainly more than $50 million per example.

Additionally, BRT signal priority doesn't really work because a)things get screwed up during gridlock and b)politicians can turn off the signal priority. This actually happened in Cleveland.

mhays Jan 6, 2022 10:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by homebucket (Post 9495468)

Did you forget to link something? You posted one existing example, and another new one, both in DTLA, with nothing for the rest of the city.

My point is LA could criss-cross the city with many bus-only lanes, all over town. This would be useful because buses get caught in traffic all over town. I don't know how I can make this any simpler for you.

Lanes like this exist in many cities and they're very effective. Even if there's a light, buses are first in line.

dktshb Jan 6, 2022 10:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by homebucket (Post 9494050)
I think this has got a lot to do with it. DTLA still has far too many surface parking lots and garages. In fact, one of their recent proposals is building a residential tower on top of an existing garage, rather than tearing it down and starting from scratch. Lots of new towers in South Park but they're all on massive parking podiums. Seems like DTLA has been adding more parking rather than decreasing it. I bet if you eliminated 50% of parking downtown, public transit usage rate would increase dramatically. Make parking more difficult and people will have no choice but to take the train into DTLA.

There are too many surface lots and parking podiums downtown. Fortunately now there are a few structures in the pipeline that do no include parking. Regarding the tower you're referring to to be built, the first 3 floors of that parking structure is a Macy's.

homebucket Jan 6, 2022 11:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhays (Post 9495505)
Did you forget to link something? You posted one existing example, and another new one, both in DTLA, with nothing for the rest of the city.

My point is LA could criss-cross the city with many bus-only lanes, all over town. This would be useful because buses get caught in traffic all over town. I don't know how I can make this any simpler for you.

Lanes like this exist in many cities and they're very effective. Even if there's a light, buses are first in line.

I'm not sure why you keep moving the goalposts. I think I already provided sufficient evidence. Unfortunately I don't have the time to look up and show you every bus lane on every bus route in the greater LA area.

I'm actually in agreement with you that improvements can be made. I was just simply stating that the bus system is already robust.

mhays Jan 6, 2022 11:04 PM

Ok, I had a spare 45 seconds. In a central 80 square miles or so, there's not much.

https://la.streetsblog.org/2021/09/1...o-coming-soon/
https://la.streetsblog.org/2021/09/1...o-coming-soon/

sopas ej Jan 6, 2022 11:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SAN Man (Post 9495389)
The few electric busses that are on the road around here are cool. They're wrapped in a lime green color, nice and quiet.

Yeah, I've seen some electric buses in my area. They're nice and quiet indeed. So far, I've seen them on Foothill Transit, another transit agency in the San Gabriel Valley. I realize I live where a number of different transit agencies overlap.

homebucket Jan 6, 2022 11:26 PM

I bet buses in other cities can't 2 wheel.

https://kcet.brightspotcdn.com/dims4...ed-1994bus.jpg

pdxtex Jan 6, 2022 11:27 PM

Per the original question, umm no. But its good they are expanding the system. Other than Moscow, NYC and London, the world drives cars. Transit isn't a solution to gridlock, its just another civic bonus of a well organized city.

SAN Man Jan 6, 2022 11:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 9495538)
Yeah, I've seen some electric buses in my area. They're nice and quiet indeed. So far, I've seen them on Foothill Transit, another transit agency in the San Gabriel Valley. I realize I live where a number of different transit agencies overlap.

I think these are a game changer for the passengers' experience. I don't know how they pencil out in the long run for transit agencies, how much or more do they cost compared to a regular bus.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...8842768e_z.jpgMTS Electric Bus by So Cal Metro, on Flickr

jd3189 Jan 7, 2022 12:12 AM

Why not LA also focus on rebuilding its former streetcar system, which was arguably one of the largest ever built?


I believe that the streetcar system alone would be fierce competition to the freeway/road system and can be overlapped with the latter to ensure that public transportation is not simply for getting people to downtown and some far off suburb but also for connecting all the nodes of activity in LA county in a decentralized web.

Of course, continue on building subways and stuff, but a decentralized streetcar system would work wonders to be a worthy alternative to the automobile for a lot of Angelenos and SoCal residents. In fact, this is something all US cities, especially those in the Sunbelt, should be looking into.

accord1999 Jan 7, 2022 12:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SAN Man (Post 9495580)
I think these are a game changer for the passengers' experience. I don't know how they pencil out in the long run for transit agencies, how much or more do they cost compared to a regular bus.

For the previously mentioned Foothill Transit Agency, their findings for battery electric buses aren't that great and they prefer Fuel Cell powered buses as they only need two FC buses to provide the same service as three BE buses, resulting in lower lifetime operating costs.

https://i.imgur.com/ddq1jBW.png

https://cafcp.org/sites/default/file...e-to-Board.pdf

jd3189 Jan 7, 2022 12:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 9495253)
some subway is good out there for sure, but more than any other city la is the one i wish for the most to bring the streetcars back.

i guess car drivers would never go for it anymore, but still i wish they would experiment with it somewhere to see what happens.

Dang, you beat me to it. But still, to address the responses to this, there are many ways to accommodate streetcars and/busses to the transportation infrastructure so that they don't have to deal with the bullshit traffic.

In fact, the main thing that can push more people in LA to use public transportation over the car is to stress the shittiness of traffic. People will deal with it because they still love the independence their cars give ( I know that's my reasoning for driving over taking PT), but there are many days when it ain't worth sitting in the middle of rush hour not moving an inch.

Thus, the marketing team for LA's public transit better figure out how to make a good case. Some genius from Hollywood has to be among their ranks :haha:

But I am serious, traffic is a pain in the ass.

sopas ej Jan 7, 2022 12:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by accord1999 (Post 9495609)
For the previously mentioned Foothill Transit Agency, their findings for battery electric buses aren't that great and they prefer Fuel Cell powered buses as they only need two FC buses to provide the same service as three BE buses, resulting in lower lifetime operating costs.

https://i.imgur.com/ddq1jBW.png

https://cafcp.org/sites/default/file...e-to-Board.pdf

Ah, how disappointing. Oh well. Maybe as the technology for electric buses becomes more common, they'll jump on the electric bus bandwagon again.

mhays Jan 7, 2022 4:37 AM

Marketing is just part of it. I'll say it again....but lanes would speed the buses dramatically, as they've done in other cities. LA has very little bus-only infrastructure.

craigs Jan 7, 2022 4:54 AM

It's not that LA cannot or does not have any good bus service at all, it's just that the MTA is playing catch up. It wasn't that long ago that locals and their representatives were reflexively anti-transit.

LA has a fantastic 24-hour BRT line in the Valley, the G Line, which runs in an exclusive dedicated ROW from Chatsworth to the North Hollywood B Line subway station. I've seen some of the G Line stations and crossed the ROW many times since I moved back, and it is impressive. There is another BRT line, the J Line, from San Pedro through downtown and out to El Monte. I know that much of the line is grade-separated, but I'm not sure about the split as I've never seen it myself and the Wikipedia entry doesn't really say.

mhays Jan 7, 2022 4:57 AM

Spines are just part of the issue, whether they're rail or BRT. Imagine an avenue every mile or half-mile having frequent bus service in dedicated lanes.

SAN Man Jan 7, 2022 2:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhays (Post 9495814)
Spines are just part of the issue, whether they're rail or BRT. Imagine an avenue every mile or half-mile having frequent bus service in dedicated lanes.

That would get things moving if there's enough space along the road for dedicated lanes.

San Diego's route 215 is a BRT that goes down Park Blvd and El Cajon Blvd from Downtown to SDSU with dedicated lanes and some stations in the middle of the road. ECB was the old US 80 highway that came into the city from the east. It was 3 lanes in each direction plus a median with left turning lanes. The city was able to eliminate 1 lane on each side and turn it into a bus only lane. I don't think many of LA's roads have the space to eliminate a lane for a bus lane.

Park/University BRT stop: https://goo.gl/maps/FmWVmytSeuFhacr1A
Rapid stop in the median: https://goo.gl/maps/wQHgFdCr3z6WispB8
El Cajon Blvd Bus Lane: https://goo.gl/maps/qfLMoycWA9jqFnA56

Way out in Otay, part of Chula Vista, planners did a good job dedicating space for BRT:
https://goo.gl/maps/9TyVSCDfhs1rBU8Z6
https://goo.gl/maps/dELjTgbc2WfaZ9fx5

mhays Jan 7, 2022 4:42 PM

The typical avenue has street parking. Get rid of that and it would work.

Turn lanes are another opportunity.

Each avenue would be an epic battle, and the other side would have valid points, but it's still a potential.

SFBruin Jan 7, 2022 6:37 PM

No, but it's not a problem to try.

lrt's friend Jan 7, 2022 7:01 PM

Streetcars are useless unless there is room for dedicated lanes. Streetcars in mixed traffic are slower than buses because they cannot go around obstacles as simple as a turning vehicle. Don't waste money on something that will not deliver better service.

The emphasis should be on bus lanes and building a frequent bus network that complements and feeds the rail network. Solve that last mile problem. You shouldn't feel it is necessary to walk 20 minutes to a rail station.

Working on upgrading the commuter rail network to all-day relatively frequent service mirrors what Toronto is currently working on with its GO rail network and will be a game changer.

Don't expect miracles overnight. This will require a generational change, so a focus on serving colleges and universities well will support a generational change. Here, university tuition includes a transit pass.

Another thing that has worked well here, is to include a transit fare in major event ticket prices, then provide enough transit capacity to support this. Getting car drivers to take transit to even one or two events a year, is a step towards the majority considering transit as an option, rather than just a scary alternative only for the very poor.

mrnyc Jan 7, 2022 7:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SAN Man (Post 9495386)
Wouldn't a streetcar that is fixed on rails and running in traffic be a slower mode of transportation from the current bus system?

Busses have the flexibility to move around traffic backups and the city can build bus pull-outs to let traffic pass by as passengers load onto the bus.

perhaps, but they can be given right of way.

so could busses too tho.

the point of streetcars being to promote attractive, walkable neighborhoods, or improve those that exist, something los angeles desperately needs, rather than speed. unlike busses you could hop on and off more easily anywhere and you would get out at the subway if you wanted to get to dtla/union station fast.

i think its well worth a try at least, like first with a quieter street like along the main drag in los feliz, something like that, rather than start with than something much busier like say la cienega. just for proof of concept. :tup:

iheartthed Jan 7, 2022 7:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 9496334)
perhaps, but they can be given right of way.

so could busses too tho.

the point of streetcars being to promote attractive, walkable neighborhoods, or improve those that exist, something los angeles desperately needs, rather than speed. unlike busses you could hop on and off more easily anywhere and you would get out at the subway if you wanted to get to dtla/union station fast.

i think its well worth a try at least, like first with a quieter street like along the main drag in los feliz, something like that, rather than start with than something much busier like say la cienega. just for proof of concept. :tup:

Streetcars are also higher capacity, so they would move more people than buses.

lrt's friend Jan 7, 2022 7:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iheartthed (Post 9496358)
Streetcars are also higher capacity, so they would move more people than buses.

You are getting up to LRT size and then you definitely don't want them in mixed traffic. The temptation here is run these huge vehicles at poor frequencies, which is self-defeating.

edale Jan 7, 2022 7:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 9496334)
perhaps, but they can be given right of way.

so could busses too tho.

the point of streetcars being to promote attractive, walkable neighborhoods, or improve those that exist, something los angeles desperately needs, rather than speed. unlike busses you could hop on and off more easily anywhere and you would get out at the subway if you wanted to get to dtla/union station fast.

i think its well worth a try at least, like first with a quieter street like along the main drag in los feliz, something like that, rather than start with than something much busier like say la cienega. just for proof of concept. :tup:

A series of neighborhood circulator streetcars in neighborhoods with metro stops would be hugely beneficial.

mrnyc Jan 7, 2022 7:34 PM

^ exactly!

Quote:

Originally Posted by lrt's friend (Post 9496367)
You are getting up to LRT size and then you definitely don't want them in mixed traffic. The temptation here is run these huge vehicles at poor frequencies, which is self-defeating.

true, but that happens with busses all the time too.

for example, here in nyc we got a lot of articulated busses several years ago. so you gained capacity, but then there were less busses, so you lost frequency.

its just something to be aware of and you have to advocate about it constantly.

i wasn't thinking of a bigger lrt train tho.

lrt's friend Jan 7, 2022 8:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 9496374)
^ exactly!



true, but that happens with busses all the time too.

for example, here in nyc we got a lot of articulated busses several years ago. so you gained capacity, but then there were less busses, so you lost frequency.

its just something to be aware of and you have to advocate about it constantly.

i wasn't thinking of a bigger lrt train tho.

I have seen the same here with articulated buses. Capacity becomes more important than frequency. In the long run, this is a bad idea.

An articulated streetcar has a similar capacity as an articulated bus, but you have the cost of the rail infrastructure. Beyond that, we are getting into LRT size vehicles which need at least separate lanes to run effectively.

ue Jan 8, 2022 2:05 AM

Honestly, no. But it will help a lot. The amount of new rail infrastructure for a contemporary US city is impressive, but only by our current standards. Almost all of New York's subway was built in a 40 year stretch, and dedicating that much of an investment in public transit (be it LRT, subway, BRT, streetcars, or buses) to really turn things over.

LA is mostly built on a grid, so that makes it easy to just run rapid transit up and down it with frequent (2-5min peak) service. It's going to need to have a good network of buses to feed into the rail projects and the rail projects actually need to go where people need/want to go (the way the Gold Line just misses CalTech is so dumb, but the US is littered with examples even more egregious). BRT will need to be done on high density roads where rail won't work. A rail network at least like this below would be necessary to get Central-West-South Central LA and the innermost parts of the SF and SG Valley to be truly transit-friendly.

https://i.imgur.com/ZMaX3fV.png

ocman Jan 8, 2022 3:28 AM

I think tourists taking advantage of LA's growing public transit system will happen faster than residents taking it. It's starting to cover all the places worth going to in LA. The solution for residents is transit-oriented developments and minimizing parking requirements so that a large enough number decide its worth saving on rent vs the convenience of a car. And of course, just keep building and building and building out the rail system until it goes everywhere. I feel there's a critical point the system has to surpass before you see an explosion of residential transit rider. But that has to be in conjunction with making progress on zoning high density developments. It'll be considered successful when it reached Bay Area level, and that's really not a high bar being set.

lrt's friend Jan 8, 2022 4:10 AM

Start pricing parking or pricing it higher at strategic locations will encourage higher transit use.

kittyhawk28 Jan 8, 2022 5:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ue (Post 9496815)
Honestly, no. But it will help a lot. The amount of new rail infrastructure for a contemporary US city is impressive, but only by our current standards. Almost all of New York's subway was built in a 40 year stretch, and dedicating that much of an investment in public transit (be it LRT, subway, BRT, streetcars, or buses) to really turn things over.

LA is mostly built on a grid, so that makes it easy to just run rapid transit up and down it with frequent (2-5min peak) service. It's going to need to have a good network of buses to feed into the rail projects and the rail projects actually need to go where people need/want to go (the way the Gold Line just misses CalTech is so dumb, but the US is littered with examples even more egregious). BRT will need to be done on high density roads where rail won't work. A rail network at least like this below would be necessary to get Central-West-South Central LA and the innermost parts of the SF and SG Valley to be truly transit-friendly.

https://i.imgur.com/ZMaX3fV.png

For what its worth, this is Metro's eventual full-buildout plans look like:
Measure R & M projects + Strategic Unfunded Projects:

https://i.redd.it/4hj0wytodca81.png

It's definitely not bad, and I could see this map realistically being built by the 2040s if another transit tax measure or two are approved in the next 2 decades. SGV is much better served with the addition of the Silver Line, but admittedly rail transit there would be overly focused around DTLA, whereas West LA would have a more convenient grid structure.

You drew some rail lines on the Harbor Subdivision, which is eventually planned to handle a direct LAX-Union Station Metrolink line at some point. Other than that, some of the lines you drew in West LA are right now being built as BRT lines (such as the line down Venice Blvd). I think building BRT while laying the barebones of the rail network is a good strategy for Metro, as it sets up future corridors for conversion to rail when ridership necessitates it.

ue Jan 8, 2022 6:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kittyhawk28 (Post 9496889)
For what its worth, this is Metro's eventual full-buildout plans look like:
Measure R & M projects + Strategic Unfunded Projects:

https://i.redd.it/4hj0wytodca81.png

It's definitely not bad, and I could see this map realistically being built by the 2040s if another transit tax measure or two are approved in the next 2 decades. SGV is much better served with the addition of the Silver Line, but admittedly rail transit there would be overly focused around DTLA, whereas West LA would have a more convenient grid structure.

You drew some rail lines on the Harbor Subdivision, which is eventually planned to handle a direct LAX-Union Station Metrolink line at some point. Other than that, some of the lines you drew in West LA are right now being built as BRT lines (such as the line down Venice Blvd). I think building BRT while laying the barebones of the rail network is a good strategy for Metro, as it sets up future corridors for conversion to rail when ridership necessitates it.

Oh, this one's a bit different from the ones you showed in the original post. I do like this a bit better. But, it's also hard to see exactly where these lines are supposed to go, especially without any labels on the Google Maps you used. It'd be helpful if there was a custom Google Map where users could zoom in to see where everything is supposed to go. I tried to do a search, but the ones I came up with either seemed outdated or more "fantasy" maps than what is actually proposed.

I still have some reservations about this unfunded build-out:
- The Green Line should hug closer to Venice itself. Probably go down Abbot Kinney and then down Main or Pacific thru to Santa Monica. This would hit the denser and more destination-worthy parts of Venice that are actually where people want to go.
- Similarly, on the Green Line, when it gets down to Torrance, it should probably stop using the old right of way briefly around Old Torrance - a gridded and walkable neighbourhood in its own right that would benefit from more direct access to light rail. There is room at Dominguez Way, which turns into Van Ness and then Cabrillo, and then it can meet back up with the old ROW that the Green Line really wants to use. Not much different than the Purple Line dipping off Wilshire to get to Century City briefly.
- I really hate the zig-zag of the Crenshaw line you show (I know there's alternates) north of the Expo Line. It's inefficient in what is a very gridded part of LA. Have it go straight up to Wilshire and then bump it slightly over to Western and have it go straight north. If you need something down La Brea or Fairfax, have a separate, straight LRT or BRT instead. Makes for more efficient trips for a greater variety of riders.
- The NoHo-Pasadena line is great (it's basically one of the ideas I shared) but it should continue down Colorado or Green to get directly to CalTech...it's extremely short-sighted that they cheaped out with the Gold Line as it's not really convenient to the university (and universities are generally great ridership gainers)

And even still, while all these efforts are great, and certainly more impressive than anything Chicago or New York have done in generations, it still isn't enough. There really needs to be a major shift in funding towards transit, far greater than current capacities, to make LA anything approaching New York or Chicago for transit modal share. There needs to be more redundancies in dense areas (the general arc from Santa Monica/Venice to DTLA, and perhaps from DTLA into South Central) to make transit exceptionally useful and get people literally anywhere they need to go. The road layout in these areas is already conducive to this, so why not?

I agree with you though -- it doesn't all have to be rail, of course. Frequent, all-day bus service is a start, and that could be upgraded to BRT later, and then LRT/HRT if ridership grows. But there's no reason why Melrose, Fairfax, La Brea, Venice*, Santa Monica, Washington, Pico, Western, Slauson, Vernon, Avalon, etc can't have a well-oiled transit grid right now that can be upgraded later. This is what Toronto does and it arguably has the most successful transit system north of Mexico on this continent.

Also, there is very clearly an old ROW in the Beach Cities that follows Valley/Ardmore. How has this not been in the discussion (or perhaps it has, and I have missed it)? Seems like a low hanging fruit to me because it gets you a lot closer to the most popular destinations in that area (Manhattan Village, the literal beaches) than the Green Line ever will.

Another thing with this build out is that despite all the track it's adding, it still feels kind of bare. I get it - LA County is huge - but I think for the city to try and give an alternative to the car-centric lifestyle so prevalent in the region, it would better spend its efforts focusing first on the areas most conducive to transit (the older, gridded areas that already have main streets, dingbats, etc) and building out from there to more suburban areas. Some exceptions of course, like Century City, as they are major regional destinations, and the 405 line because it would probably help congestion a lot. But I'd rather see a line down Santa Monica from West LA to Silver Lake and then back down to DTLA via Sunset than spreading out far into the SGV or SFV.

* I see you noted the BRT for Venice Blvd and that's great!

Quixote Jan 8, 2022 7:17 AM

Based on the current slate of projects? No. But what we do know is that people will actually ride rail provided it takes them to places they want to go. The Expo Line was completed in 2016 and broke its 2030 forecasted ridership only a few years thereafter. Ridership projections for Crenshaw northern extension alternative have ridership density that exceeds Boston's T.

Is it possible to orient the city/metro toward transit? Absolutely. Build a subway along every major commercial corridor and line it with mixed-use mid-rises, bus-only lanes, bike lanes, sidewalk extensions, mid-block crossings, etc. Triple/quadruple track Metrolink, so that there's local and express service.

Metro Rail's peak ridership was I believe 370K-ish. Purple Line extension, Crenshaw northern extension, Regional Connector, and Sepulveda should add another 300-400K riders. Then factor in a potential heavy rail extension down Vermont plus a subway underneath SMB (connecting WeHo to DT, with a stop at Vin Scully Ave. for Dodger Stadium), and you're already at 1 million riders.

It's certainly within the realm of possibility that LA could match the transit share of Chicago and DC. We have double their population, so double their rail ridership (both around 700-800K).

Quixote Jan 8, 2022 7:25 AM

Also would like to point out that LA's decline in rail ridership was due in large part to the partial closure of the Blue Line and that douchebag Phil Washington (Metro's now ex-CEO) reducing headways to 20 minutes after 8 p.m. just to save a few million dollars.

mhays Jan 8, 2022 5:19 PM

You'll need a lot more than rail to approach those cities in transit commute share -- a multiple of other types of transit commutes too. Metro commute shares from 2019 ACS:
-DC: 13.1%
-Chicago: 12.4%
-LA: 4.8%

While we're at it:
-Atlanta: 2.8%
-Baltimore: 5.9%
-Boston: 13.4%
-Dallas: 1.3%
-Denver: 4.5%
-Detroit: 1.4%
-Houston: 2.0%
-Miami: 2.9%
-MSP: 4.5%
-NY: 31.6%
-Philly: 9.4%
-Phoenix: 1.8%
-Pittsburgh: 6.0%
-Portland: 6.7%
-SD: 2.8%
-SF: 18.9% (& 4.7% SJ)
-Seattle: 10.7%

Quixote Jan 8, 2022 7:39 PM

Wait until the Purple Line extension (2027), Regional Connector (2023), Crenshaw Line (late 2022 or early 2023), LAX people mover (2023), and at least the first phase of the Sepulveda line are completed and the pandemic is comfortably behind us. Those projects will hit the following employment centers:

Downtown (Bunker Hill and Civic Center)
Miracle Mile
Beverly Hills (Golden Triangle)
Century City
Westwood
UCLA
VA campus
LAX

SAN Man Jan 8, 2022 8:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhays (Post 9497063)
You'll need a lot more than rail to approach those cities in transit commute share -- a multiple of other types of transit commutes too. Metro commute shares from 2019 ACS:
-DC: 13.1%
-Chicago: 12.4%
-LA: 4.8%

While we're at it:
-Atlanta: 2.8%
-Baltimore: 5.9%
-Boston: 13.4%
-Dallas: 1.3%
-Denver: 4.5%
-Detroit: 1.4%
-Houston: 2.0%
-Miami: 2.9%
-MSP: 4.5%
-NY: 31.6%
-Philly: 9.4%
-Phoenix: 1.8%
-Pittsburgh: 6.0%
-Portland: 6.7%
-SD: 2.8%
-SF: 18.9% (& 4.7% SJ)
-Seattle: 10.7%

Do you know which of these cities had a drop in transit share leading up to 2019? I know a lot of cities transit agencies were reporting lower numbers for consecutive years.

Now that the mid-coast Trolley extension has opened, busses rerouted to new transit centers serving the extension, I would think that San Diego hit rock bottom in 2019-2020.

I'll be honest, I had no idea it was as low as 2.8%. SANDAG just voted to approve a $160 billion transit plan last month.

Quixote Jan 8, 2022 8:13 PM

And while those and other rail projects are underway, residential mid-rises and skyscrapers will also be built and streetscape improvements made.

A nice employment cluster is forming around the Expo Line's Culver City station, anchored by the Ivy Station TOD (which, yes, does bear some auto-centric design flaws):

HBO has leased the entire office component (240,000-SF) at Ivy Station for its West Coast headquarters. Across the street, Apple is planning a 565,000-SF addition adjacent to their existing 125,000-SF office. Scopely's new headquarters building is a block away, and Amazon Studios and Culver Steps (where Amazon has leased additional space) are both a 0.3-0.4-mile walk down Washington Blvd., which has already received streetscape improvements.

https://goo.gl/maps/HSXLKboxTBcHe1819

ue Jan 8, 2022 8:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mhays (Post 9497063)
You'll need a lot more than rail to approach those cities in transit commute share -- a multiple of other types of transit commutes too. Metro commute shares from 2019 ACS:
-DC: 13.1%
-Chicago: 12.4%
-LA: 4.8%

While we're at it:
-Atlanta: 2.8%
-Baltimore: 5.9%
-Boston: 13.4%
-Dallas: 1.3%
-Denver: 4.5%
-Detroit: 1.4%
-Houston: 2.0%
-Miami: 2.9%
-MSP: 4.5%
-NY: 31.6%
-Philly: 9.4%
-Phoenix: 1.8%
-Pittsburgh: 6.0%
-Portland: 6.7%
-SD: 2.8%
-SF: 18.9% (& 4.7% SJ)
-Seattle: 10.7%

Apparently Winnipeg and Edmonton have greater transit modal share than DC and Chicago. That's pretty impressive or pathetic depending on which side you're looking from.

Quixote Jan 8, 2022 9:05 PM

This is roughly what I would identify as LA's core area for capturing transit ridership (sans La Canada and the SFV west of the 405), owing to one or a combination of: urban structure, density potential, low-income population, employment centers, and points of interest. Build high-capacity, grade-separated rail here and the riders will come. Of course there are other factors that must align with this program, but rail infrastructure is the starting point.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...80edefb019.jpg


The first four alternatives (the fifth has already been ruled out) for the Crenshaw northern extension all have forecasted ridership densities higher than DC's Metrorail, Chicago L, and BART. The La Brea alternative has a higher forecasted ridership density than Boston's T and Philly's SEPTA.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...a7af9773_z.jpg
Metro


The 12-mile-ish first phase of the Sepulveda line is forecasted to have a ridership density of 10,000+ per mile.

https://live.staticflickr.com/7828/4...387b00bf_c.jpg


And these two projects having connections with the Purple Line (and Red for the Crenshaw line) will likely push the Purple Line extension's (conservative) project ridership of 72,800 to 100,000, as neither Crenshaw nor Sepulveda were factored into the original calculated figure.

Doady Jan 8, 2022 11:47 PM

Los Angeles County spends a lot of money on bus service, not just billions annually for the fuel and labour costs, but also for the buses themselves. Those 2300+ buses are worth hundreds of millions of dollars, and think of the amount rail they could immediately build with that money. And that's not even counting the plethora of other bus systems like Orange County and Long Beach. You can see how much rail the Dallas-Fort Worth region was able to build by limiting its funding for buses. It's time the Los Angeles region to do the same and start thinking ahead and building for the future instead of just living in the past.

ue Jan 9, 2022 1:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doady (Post 9497342)
Los Angeles County spends a lot of money on bus service, not just billions annually for the fuel and labour costs, but also for the buses themselves. Those 2300+ buses are worth hundreds of millions of dollars, and think of the amount rail they could immediately build with that money. And that's not even counting the plethora of other bus systems like Orange County and Long Beach. You can see how much rail the Dallas-Fort Worth region was able to build by limiting its funding for buses. It's time the Los Angeles region to do the same and start thinking ahead and building for the future instead of just living in the past.

Doesn't Dallas also have hilariously low ridership on the DART precisely because the buses don't feed into the light rail system all that well?

ue Jan 9, 2022 1:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Quixote (Post 9497240)
This is roughly what I would identify as LA's core area for capturing transit ridership (sans La Canada and the SFV west of the 405), owing to one or a combination of: urban structure, density potential, low-income population, employment centers, and points of interest. Build high-capacity, grade-separated rail here and the riders will come. Of course there are other factors that must align with this program, but rail infrastructure is the starting point.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...80edefb019.jpg

I agree - this is something I was championing earlier too. Focus on the denser parts of Central-West LA, the inner parts of the SFV and SGV, and South Central for all of these reasons. Not that people in Anaheim don't also deserve high quality transit, but it will be much easier to build a base of high quality transit-centric neighbourhoods in this area that could be built further out after this core was built up.


Quote:

The first four alternatives (the fifth has already been ruled out) for the Crenshaw northern extension all have forecasted ridership densities higher than DC's Metrorail, Chicago L, and BART. The La Brea alternative has a higher forecasted ridership density than Boston's T and Philly's SEPTA.

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/...a7af9773_z.jpg
Metro


The 12-mile-ish first phase of the Sepulveda line is forecasted to have a ridership density of 10,000+ per mile.

https://live.staticflickr.com/7828/4...387b00bf_c.jpg


And these two projects having connections with the Purple Line (and Red for the Crenshaw line) will likely push the Purple Line extension's (conservative) project ridership of 72,800 to 100,000, as neither Crenshaw nor Sepulveda were factored into the original calculated figure.
I still don't get these huge zig-zags for the Crenshaw north line. They're so inefficient. Why isn't Western an option? It's more of a straight through route than any of these and is still a dense & well-used corridor. Then have a full expansion of the Red down Vermont, and have another line altogether down Fairfax or La Cienega. The only one of these that I'd sort of be ok with is La Brea.

jd3189 Jan 9, 2022 2:08 AM

Yeah, the Westside should be the focus for more density via transit and upzoning. That area has the most potential to be LA's equivalent of Manhattan or core SF.

From there, the rail system can expand from a multi-nodal standpoint to all the other major neighborhoods, attractions, schools, etc throughout LA county. Follow the same path as the existing freeways for major lines, and public transit will be a good option for a lot of people.

Quixote Jan 9, 2022 6:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doady (Post 9497342)
Los Angeles County spends a lot of money on bus service, not just billions annually for the fuel and labour costs, but also for the buses themselves. Those 2300+ buses are worth hundreds of millions of dollars, and think of the amount rail they could immediately build with that money. And that's not even counting the plethora of other bus systems like Orange County and Long Beach. You can see how much rail the Dallas-Fort Worth region was able to build by limiting its funding for buses. It's time the Los Angeles region to do the same and start thinking ahead and building for the future instead of just living in the past.

Hundreds of millions of dollars isn’t enough to build much rail. In fact, it costs at least $500 million to build one mile of subway (with one station). The total cost for the first phase of Sepulveda will be well over $10 billion.

Quixote Jan 9, 2022 6:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ue (Post 9497401)
I agree - this is something I was championing earlier too. Focus on the denser parts of Central-West LA, the inner parts of the SFV and SGV, and South Central for all of these reasons. Not that people in Anaheim don't also deserve high quality transit, but it will be much easier to build a base of high quality transit-centric neighbourhoods in this area that could be built further out after this core was built up.

LA needs a dense heavy rail system (think lines spaced 1-1.5 miles apart) traversing that geographic area. The problem with LA though is that while it has the population, the medium-high density isn’t enough to unequivocally warrant heavy rail. But at the same time, it’s too dense and congested for conventional at-grade LRT.

Quote:

I still don't get these huge zig-zags for the Crenshaw north line. They're so inefficient. Why isn't Western an option? It's more of a straight through route than any of these and is still a dense & well-used corridor. Then have a full expansion of the Red down Vermont, and have another line altogether down Fairfax or La Cienega. The only one of these that I'd sort of be ok with is La Brea.
Politics. WeHo supported Measure R by 86% (more than any other municipality), and they want rail. The original plan however was for there to be HRT underneath SMB starting from Hollywood/Highland and then interlining with the Purple Line in Beverly Hills. That alternative wasn’t pursued because it was deemed not cost-effective enough to be competitive for federal New Starts funding. The Crenshaw northern extension was viewed as a separate project going straight up La Brea.


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