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-   -   CHICAGO: Transit Developments (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=101657)

Justin_Chicago Apr 18, 2014 2:36 PM

My distaste for buses is due to the long waits for people boarding at each stop, the bunching of buses, and the existing routes snarled by normal car traffic. I walk faster than most bus routes (36, 22, 8) passing through main streets in Lakeview and Lincoln Park. It amazes me that I can walk from Diversey to Irving Park along Broadway Avenue and never see a 36 bus pass me. At least with heavy rail, I know that the train will be boarded by passengers quickly, have no interference (e.g. stop lights, car traffic), and the next train is always in 7-9 minutes. I rarely use buses anymore now that Divvy is so prevalent throughout the city.

I personally never experienced a BRT transit, so it is hard for me to believe the benefits. However, I am not a fan of light rail. I visit Portland often for work and their light rail system is extremely slow compared to the standards I am use to from riding the red, green and blue line on a daily basis. A BRT system along Ashland or Western would not entice me to move to any west side neighborhood of the city that is not within walking distance of a green or blue line stop. I expect rapid transit access if I choose to live without a vehicle. I love visiting Humboldt Park and Pilsen, but I could never live there due to the lack of a CTA rail station.

LouisVanDerWright Apr 18, 2014 2:40 PM

^^^ See that's the thing, BRT virtually eliminates all of the problems you mention with regular buses. There is no loading wait because the passengers are prepaid. There is no bunching because the buses have signal priority and dedicated ROW. Same goes with being snarled in regular traffic, there could be some situations where it spills over into the BRT lane, but as along as the lane is enforced by the city, that shouldn't be an issue either. I think once people see BRT in the flesh on Ashland, they are going to immediately realize the potential it has for the entire city because, let's face it, most of the outer neighborhoods of Chicago simply are not dense enough to justify the high costs of heavy rail. Maybe we could use a few more heavy rail connections like the circle line, but Chicago is so perfectly suited to BRT it's ridiculous.

Jibba Apr 18, 2014 3:51 PM

I'm not sure why the CTA is bothering to show a conceptual development here:

http://www.transitchicago.com/assets...wayAinslie.png

Maybe they are simply trying to show that the revived stations and track would be an impetus to development in that area, because I don't see that strip center coming down anytime soon. Also, the parcel north of Belmont between Wilton and the tracks was being marketed as a TOD opportunity for a while before being relegated to a car-share lot.

As for the flyover viaduct, I don't want to speculate about anything, but if 3336 N Clark is spared, I'll be happy. Their "conceptual rendering" shows wholesale clearance of that block section, but perhaps they will employ a piecemeal demo instead when they actually proceed with the work.

the urban politician Apr 18, 2014 5:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LouisVanDerWright (Post 6544996)
Sorry guys, as sexy as it would be to just build subways all over the place, BRT is the only logical way to expand the system right now. Don't forget that Chicago has always been a city of hub and spoke heavy rail connected by a much lighter rail/bus grid. Buses have simply replaced cable cars and streetcars and Chicago is built to support an excellent network of surface based transit. BRT is a fantastic way to upgrade that network of buses so that they achieve speeds that are nearly as fast as the L. As awesome as it would be if Chicago never removed and paved over the street car lines, BRT will be even more awesome since the streetcars were always disadvantaged by the fact that they couldn't easily be rerouted or avoid obstacles. BRT has the best of both worlds: a reserved ROW with fast loading at a limited number of platforms just like heavy rail, but is not tied to expensive trackwork at street level.

^ But that's just it: Chicago was a streetcar city 100 years ago. It was a hub and spoke city 100 years ago. But look at what is happening now: the population is concentrating along the core and lakefront, and dropping everywhere else. The population is really getting dense in a few areas. We need a transit system that serves Chicago's population patterns of the future, not the population patterns of 1910. It makes no sense that there is no way to get from the West Loop to Streeterville other than a car or a bus, for example. These are areas that are growing, and that is where the jobs, shopping, and tourist attractions are. Perhaps that was not important 100 years ago, but it's really important now.

Quote:

I for one cannot wait to see Ashland BRT and am even more thrilled about Western BRT. I don't give a damn about the poor delivery truckers who will have to obey another traffic law. If it really is that big of a problem then distributors will simply have to start buying smaller trucks which would be a win for the whole city because I really don't think 18 wheelers belong in the core in the first place.
^ I like that Ashland BRT idea. But why can't we apply for Federal funding for the Clinton subway as well as a subway connecting the West Loop to Mag Mile/Streeterville/Navy Pier? Those are needed, and I feel they are needed far more badly than the Red Line extension.

ardecila Apr 18, 2014 5:27 PM

Politics rules here. Community leaders on the Far South Side are counting on the Red Line Extension as their economic savior. It's a false hope of course, but Rahm has committed to it as a gesture to that part of the city.

This is not just a Chicago problem, by the way - in many cities, pressure is always to extend the system outward because on a map, it looks like the core has a ton of transit already while outlying neighborhoods do not. Of course, that doesn't take into account where people actually live and work.

le_brew Apr 18, 2014 5:28 PM

red line flyover
 
if CTA built a clearance bridge along the red line section instead of the brown line flyover, wouldn't that eliminate the need for any demolition?

Ashland BRT: I'm going to agree that it should just get built; get on with it. . . and we'll see. it's really an awful idea, but the debate is tiresome at this point.

OrdoSeclorum Apr 18, 2014 6:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by untitledreality (Post 6544804)
Why should anyone support that sprawl oriented plan?

The point of Transit Future is to get regional stakeholders on board and get the metro area rowing in the same direction. It's pragmatic. If the Republican congressmen from the collar counties pull hard on their levers in support of, say, the Clinton Street Subway, it's because the plan also results in investment in infrastructure in their districts. I'm not sure it's perfect, but a flawed plan with a chance of success it better than a perfect plan with no chance. I'm a supporter.

As for sprawl, I'm not a suburb fan, but calling transit investment in near-in suburbs "sprawl inducing" dilutes the term sprawl until it becomes almost meaningless. Anything that reduces car dependence in the region is going to strengthen the core. Lots of criticism can be directed toward commuter rail and ring rail plans, but I'm going to reserve my sprawl criticisms to stuff like the mortgage interested deduction, and the Illiana highway.

Busy Bee Apr 18, 2014 7:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by le_brew (Post 6545236)
if CTA built a clearance bridge along the red line section instead of the brown line flyover...

In retrospect what they should have done is never rebuilt Fullerton and Belmont as they did and run the Red north in a new subway.

The Red Line, instead of leaving its portal south of Armitage could have stayed in a new tunnel that ran under the elevated ROW until exiting north of Belmont. The existing north main viaduct could have been cleared of Red Line trains from Addison all the way south and at that point rebuilt. This would not have required demolition as well and would have given the Fullerton and Belmont stations amazing potential for multilevel elevated to subterranean designs with escalators and large station houses.

Oh well. One can dream. Obviously those kinds of people don't work for the Cta.

Justin_Chicago Apr 18, 2014 7:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Busy Bee (Post 6545333)
In retrospect what they should have done is never rebuilt Fullerton and Belmont as they did and run the Red north in a new subway.

The Red Line, instead of leaving its portal south of Armitage could have stayed in a new tunnel that run under the ROW until exiting north of Belmont. The existing north main viaduct could have been cleared of Red Line trains from Addison all the way south and at that point rebuilt. This would not have required demolition as well and would have given the Fullerton and Belmont stations amazing potential for multilevel elevated to subterranean designs with escalators and large station houses.

Oh well. One can dream. Obviously those kinds of people don't work for the Cta.

I plan on attending the CTA meeting on May 22 (19th District Police Station - 850 W Addison St.) and plea for the subway option one more time. :shrug:

le_brew Apr 18, 2014 9:02 PM

in retrospect. . . .
 
they should have never done many things in retrospect, among them:

*state street mall construction/teardown
*soldier field renovation
*block 37 station
*block 37 destruction, period!
*retained the loop "L" vs. putting the loop "L" underground in the late 1970's
*not making the blue line subway from ashland/mke to the kennedy
*not making the red line subway from north/cly to wilson
*not building crosstown exp. during an era when it would have made sense
*not building an mid-city "L" along with the crosstown
*getting rid of "x" express busses where they are still desperately needed
*never making the north lakefront south of lawrence more rapid transit accessible

there are, for sure, many more should haves

mfastx Apr 18, 2014 9:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 6544978)
What exactly is the advantage of rail? The braking distance is far inferior, so left turns would have to be aggressively prevented, lest you have a repeat of Houston's wham-bam-killer-tram.

More visible to casual users? Smoother ride? Not compared to a purpose-built guideway. Less noisy? No. More maneuverable? Definitely not. Faster acceleration? Perhaps a tiny bit, but time advantage lost in slower deceleration. Cheaper to operate? Disproven many times.

Makes railfans drool? Well, you got me there.

On a per passenger basis, rail is almost always much cheaper to operate.

Operating costs per hour doesn't take into account the additional passengers carried by rail.

chicagopcclcar1 Apr 19, 2014 12:04 AM

Some Photo of CTA Clark JCT.
 
Some who are from other places might love some photos of Clark JCT.


http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...P1040506_4.jpg

http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...lmontRavSB.jpg

http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...bnsf/Clark.jpg

http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...f/P1000603.jpg

http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...f/P1000640.jpg

wierdaaron Apr 19, 2014 1:21 AM

I don't get to the north side too often, but when I do go through that section I usually wonder what the hell just happened. It's hard to advocate for the expense just to relieve me of that occasional moment of confusion, but I do appreciate it.

I think if they want work on public support they should spend more time talking about what exactly will be improved rather than just saying what changes they want to make. Put it in numbers. The flyover will make the train system work X% faster, or people will have to wait X minutes fewer per day.

Mr Downtown Apr 19, 2014 1:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mfastx (Post 6545473)
On a per passenger basis, rail is almost always much cheaper to operate.

Cite?

As the last line of my earlier post notes, "operating costs per hour are more than double (average 220% of bus costs) but crush capacity is only 50% greater."

These statistics on operating costs come from Characteristics of Urban Transportation Systems, a Federal Transit Administration report from 1992:

BUS $60/1000 place miles $3.80/revenue vehicle mile
LIGHT RAIL $96/1000 place miles $9.30/revenue vehicle mile
RAPID RAIL $50/1000 place miles $6.50/revenue vehicle mile


(a "place mile" is a passenger place (seated or standing) carried one mile)

I would certainly like to quit citing such old statistics, but can't until FTA funds a new study.

untitledreality Apr 19, 2014 2:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wierdaaron (Post 6545692)
I think if they want work on public support they should spend more time talking about what exactly will be improved rather than just saying what changes they want to make. Put it in numbers. The flyover will make the train system work X% faster, or people will have to wait X minutes fewer per day.

Sort of like this?

Quote:

With a bypass, Brown Line trains would proceed along a dedicated track providing a range of benefits.

Reduces delays and crowding and improves reliability.
Allows CTA to increase the number of trains on the Red Line by up to 30 percent.
Allows CTA to add six to nine more trains per hour during rush hour periods as ridership grows.
Speeds Red and Purple line trains by 60 percent through this intersection.
Saves customers a half million travel hours each year.

Source: CTA

Just to put that into perspective, a 30% capacity increase on the North side Red Line is roughly an extra 35,000 riders per day, which is greater than the daily ridership on the Purple Line (10,250 2012), Pink Line (16,700 2012), Orange Line (28,850 2012), and almost as much as the entire Green Line (38,500 2012). This is a very big deal.

untitledreality Apr 19, 2014 3:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by OrdoSeclorum (Post 6545288)
but calling transit investment in near-in suburbs "sprawl inducing"

Why are you quoting something I never said?

Quote:

Originally Posted by untitledreality (Post 6544804)
Why should anyone support that sprawl oriented plan?


UPChicago Apr 19, 2014 5:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by untitledreality (Post 6545777)
Sort of like this?


Source: CTA

Just to put that into perspective, a 30% capacity increase on the North side Red Line is roughly an extra 35,000 riders per day, which is greater than the daily ridership on the Purple Line (10,250 2012), Pink Line (16,700 2012), Orange Line (28,850 2012), and almost as much as the entire Green Line (38,500 2012). This is a very big deal.

No, increasing the amount of trains is not likely to increase the amount of passengers, maybe a marginal ridership increase. More likely it will ease the terrible overcrowding the red line currently experiences during rush hour. It's so bad that it may as well bypass Clark and Division because at the point no one is getting on between roughly 7:30am and 8:30 am.

mfastx Apr 19, 2014 2:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 6545709)
Cite?

As the last line of my earlier post notes, "operating costs per hour are more than double (average 220% of bus costs) but crush capacity is only 50% greater."

These statistics on operating costs come from Characteristics of Urban Transportation Systems, a Federal Transit Administration report from 1992:

BUS $60/1000 place miles $3.80/revenue vehicle mile
LIGHT RAIL $96/1000 place miles $9.30/revenue vehicle mile
RAPID RAIL $50/1000 place miles $6.50/revenue vehicle mile


(a "place mile" is a passenger place (seated or standing) carried one mile)

I would certainly like to quit citing such old statistics, but can't until FTA funds a new study.

My source is the NTD (national transit database) reports from 2012. Click here to get to the RY2012 databases. Extract the "data tables" folder and open "T27."

Here, you'll find operating cost per passenger trip from 2012. For example, heavy rail in Chicago costs $2.20 per passenger trip and $2.40 per passenger trip for bus.

Enjoy lol it's really interesting to see the operating costs for different modes.

untitledreality Apr 19, 2014 3:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by UPChicago (Post 6545860)
No, increasing the amount of trains is not likely to increase the amount of passengers, maybe a marginal ridership increase. More likely it will ease the terrible overcrowding the red line currently experiences during rush hour. It's so bad that it may as well bypass Clark and Division because at the point no one is getting on between roughly 7:30am and 8:30 am.

In hindsight, I worded my response poorly. I was trying to say that the capacity increase alone is capable of accommodating more riders than the current ridership of the other lines mentioned. The flyover wont create an extra 35,000 riders overnight, but as ridership along the North main continues to slowly rise, and once RPM is completed offering useful express service, I could see that 30% capacity increase filling up 10 years down the road.

ardecila Apr 19, 2014 6:01 PM

Don't forget the planned expansion to 10-car platforms, which adds another 25% of capacity to the Red Line.


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