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Highest and best use of the streetcar line corridor was originally shown in places able to use streetcar tracks designed to move freight during off-travel peak hours. If strategic planners are correct, we should rethink the concept of moving victuals into city centers vis rail, including produce terminals served by either heavy rail or "Interurban" streetcar or light rail lines. Planners with some Simmons Boardman and/or "Official Guide" volumes circa 1920-1950 can see how Pacific Electric did it. In fact, the New York elevated system had a number of downtown food terminals in New York, alongside the elevated tracks. Newbies to rail corridor studies can obtain the US Rail Map Atlas Volumes as well as the above industry resources of reknown. No one of the above messages; certainly not the originating owner of this blog seems to have the slightest sense of price and supply effects of liquid motor fuel in the calculations... Buses do not shine as brightly in scenario with monetary & resource restrictions on fuel and even paving. Absurd and ridiculous sez you; nonetheless, there are a number of forces and events eventually coming to bear on transportation methodology. Currency collapse is not out of the question; Peak Oil is already a demonstrated reality if conventional oil is to be taken as the primary driver of motor fuel supply and pricing. Overstated reserves do not readily translate into predictable flow volumes, at price amenable to maintaining our auto-oriented lifestyle. As conventional oil pricing formulas exert upward, offshore & other fossil energy sources including shales and tar sands development become more EIOER expensive. Association For The Study Of Peak Oil & Gas (Kjell Aleklett) can show chapter and verse information to all comers interested in determining reasons for all due haste construction of primary urban rail hub/spine lines with food cargo capability. Take subsidies out of the picture, and railway can maintain ops with less costs per route mile because of the passenger/freight track share capability. Progress with wireless urban rail vehicles is moving forward as well: Suntrain Transportation Inc. is just now unveiling a full complement of alternative energy railway solutions, a "Systems" concept for local retail railway. Wise indeed are the transportation planners who understand the mid-long term energy component as well as the international threats to whatever transport mode mix is aimed for. It is easy to see in the many posts above a smug assumption that private cars are superior, will always be around as we know and love them. And, buses are tolerated as long as buses bring better pavement... But there are no sure things in life, or the life of a civilization, for that matter. Do planners read and heed energy savants like Richard Heinberg, Robert L. Hirsch, and Michael Klare? America may elect a Mormon to the presidency, with hope a business savvy man in charge can set things right? How will Mitt Romney handle an energy emergency, a chain of events calling for Federal Executive Emergency Orders including motor fuel allocation(rationing)? Insights to this man's world view and business ethos can be seen in a book: Senator Frank J. Cannon's "Under The Prophet In Utah". In short, does Romney have a clue about the "Second Dimension Surface Logistics Platform" genius of railways? The Islamic component in world affairs is underestimated, in fact all but ignored in our politically correct press. "Progressive Railroading" would be more than just a title if the folks there really understood the strategic and crucial role played by a comprehensive, robust railway matrix, including local links. A quick primer in undercurrents of Middle East turmoil is seen in "The Blood Of The Moon" by George Grant. More updated, see conflict and consequence scenarios from Institute for Strategic and International Studies" (A. Cordesman). Shariah and happy motoring are a tough mix.
Commented Jul 3, 2012 on
streetcars: an inconvenient truth
streetcars: an inconvenient truth
It's a big day for streetcars. Portland has released its draft Streetcar System Concept Plan, an ambitious vision for extending the city's popular downtown streetcar all over the city. There are similar plans underway in Seattle, Minneapolis, and many other cities. I love riding streetcar...
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