Author Topic: "Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"  (Read 1957 times)

Ocklawaha

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"Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"
« on: April 20, 2013, 01:40:01 PM »
Employers are forgiving, an occasional "delay on the tracks" excuse is no different from an occasional "elevator was down" excuse.

I have never lived in Boston so it could be a utopia that I don't know about.  I'm just under the impression based on talking to low income earners that their employers don't pay them their wages unless they are there.  Are you saying that employers in Boston are willing to pay the wages for someone who was suppose to come in that day but couldn't?

I think people just plan for a rainy day.  Someone in Boston who commutes into the city likely makes $100K or more anyway, and someone who commutes "into" the city would face far more delays and roadblocks taking the limited and highly congested/tolled freeways in versus the train.

A low wage earner trying to get to their Pizza Hut job out in Medford or further might have a car (likely takes the bus, and works "close enough" where they can walk if necessary).  Does that answer your question?  What applies, mentality, convenience and otherwise, in Jacksonville, is different in Boston.  If downtown Jax had a quarter as much parking in it as it does today, and 10-20x the office space, with the same freeway access (typically highly tolled I might add...you pay $$$ to drive into Boston, SF, NYC, etc...and you pay $500+/mo for your parking, that is IF you can get a spot), you tell me what you would find generally easier and more reliable: car or train?  And once you're at that point, you are a big city where downtown workers' "market rate" pay is pretty steep.  Low wage earners who can't miss a day of work without starving are typically priced out of larger cities, or they receive major public assistance (the expansive programs in MA, CA, IL, NY and NJ would give the conservatives in Jax lethally high blood pressure, LoL).  Ok happy hour here I come and off this topic.  Pray for Boston!

Cityimrov, I think you're coming at this from a perspective that is opposite of a Bostonian or resident of similarly large/dense/expensive city.  Valid questions, but I don't think you grasp how different it is with regards to getting around in these larger cities.

There will never be an anti-transit push (quite the opposite).  Everyone knows transit's shortfalls, delays, etc.  Employers are forgiving, an occasional "delay on the tracks" excuse is no different from an occasional "elevator was down" excuse.  It's too difficult and expensive to own or use a car...even rich people take cabs/town cars/transit to work because few have the ability to even have parking, let alone pay for it, let alone the patience to sit in a funnel of 500,000 people into 2 square miles before you even begin scouting for your spot.

It's one of those "everyone's in it together" moments/truisms of the urban cities that are just not felt or comprehended by folks who have never had the pleasure of living in an urban environment. Progressives in Jax are pushing for transit even though it's super cheap, easy and convenient to get around by car and transit is not needed. In Boston, let me tell you, transit is NEEDED.  When it shuts down, it's an inconvenience that everyone faces together.  It's no different from being snowed in...smart people who are totally dependent on every hourly wage they can muster simply plan for a rainy day.


I would argue, "When do we build?" Shall Jacksonville wait until the density is such that we'd face crippling debit to get the initial lines up and running? Our population is booming, yes there have been up and down ticks but in a single lifetime I've seen the city rise from the neighborhood of 200,000 to 1.4 million... Simply do the math, what does the next 40-50 years hold? The clock is ticking throughout.

Here is the result of ignoring a quality alternative, the sad part is, virtually EVERYONE in the 'Southland' around Los Angeles saw this coming...  The photos are from Cahuenga Pass over the 'Hollywood Hills' between Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley.


MILEAGE TABLE (As of July, 1929)
Mile Post   Distance
Los Angeles   0.0
Highland & Santa Monica Boulevard   7.09
Highland & Hollywood Boulevard   7.84
Cahuenga Pass   8.56
Hollywood Way   9.99
Universal City   11.10
Rio Vista   11.59
North Hollywood   14.18
Kester Junction   16.17
Circle Drive   17.72
Van Nuys   19.11
North Sherman Way   19.89
Mission Acres   22.81
Plummer   23.81
San Fernando   27.47
Reseda   24.91
Canoga Park (Owensmouth)

THESE 3 PHOTOS TAKENS APROX THE SAME LOCATION:






 The San Fernando line through the pass was killed in 1955.


Look at the Los Angles experience, (LA by the way, is a city we were often compared to in the 1915-1925 era). LA had 600 miles of streetcar lines, 1,200 miles of interurban lines (much of it on private right-of-way) as well as a few miles of subway. They junked the entire network down to the last spike and rail, to make a space for 'autotopia,' the deed was done by 1960. By 1975 the metroplex was so abysmal that 12 noon looked like 7 pm, smoke burned your eyes in 'Beautiful downtown Burbank," and gridlock was commonplace. It took an earthquake that destroyed freeway infrastructure and the loan of some of Toronto's commuter trains to wake them up. Florida's metropolitan areas are booming and waiting for some magic density number could ruin us.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2013, 11:36:29 PM by Ocklawaha »

thelakelander

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Re: "Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2013, 02:13:19 PM »
Of course transit is needed in Jacksonville.  How else will those who can't afford a car get around this sprawling community?  Now if you want to debate the need to attract choice riders by investing in various forms of transit, then that's another story.

Now, that this question is out of the way, we can also easily say that you don't get pedestrian scale density without pedestrian scale transportation infrastructure.  If Jax can do this, it would be the first american city to pull it off.  I'd challenge anyone to find a mid to major size city that built massive density over the last 100 years without fixed transit investment. Point blank, if you don't invest in transit and make sure your land use policy complements it, you can forget about seeing a sizable increase in density.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

tufsu1

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Re: "Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2013, 08:08:22 PM »
To be fair, I've used that bottom pic in presentations for years....it isn't real

thelakelander

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Re: "Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2013, 08:16:34 PM »
Look hard enough and you can see the pattern of cut & pasted cars.
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Ocklawaha

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Re: "Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2013, 11:40:27 PM »
Okay guys, they got me... BLIND.  I'll be there in a couple of months and check it out myself, I have, in the past, sat in traffic that looked every bit as bad as the false photo. The new photo is a good representation of what I've experienced there. Of course today they have built a subway UNDER it at a cost of BILLIONS AND BILLIONS, be interesting to experience the better way.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2013, 12:29:35 PM by Ocklawaha »

Adam W

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Re: "Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2013, 04:22:21 AM »
Okay guys, they got me... BLIND.  I'll be there in a couple of months and check it out myself, I have in the past sat in traffic that looked every bit as bad as the false photo. The new photo is a good representation of what I've experienced there. Of course today they have built a subway UNDER it at a cost of BILLIONS AND BILLIONS, be interesting to experience the better way.

I agree, Ock. One fake picture doesn't change the validity of your point. Jacksonville clearly needs to invest in transit. I thought it was a no-brainer, but I'm a lay person and not an expert.

Ocklawaha

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Re: "Jax is pushing for transit-its not needed"
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2013, 12:39:15 PM »
Thanks Adam, the big point is LA foolishly scrapped a massive transit system only to discover what most every Angeleno's already instinctively knew, big mistake, big, HUGE. They are slowly recovering from it with a new network of light rail , streetcar, subway, commuter rail, regional rail, BRT, city bus, lexus lanes etc... at a cost that could equal the national budget. Once they allowed those right-of-ways to be filled in and built over, the cost of accessing those properties went through the roof. Likewise, Jacksonville junked it's fairly comprehensive rail system in 1936 and virtually all of the private-right-of-way has been paved over as well. Being much smaller gives us a window to build but it is closing in on us fast. We've had 11 new business announcements since Jan. 1, and yet our leadership in city hall seems obvious to the escalation about to hit us. We need the big play now.