Author Topic: Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail  (Read 1838 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail
« on: March 14, 2008, 05:00:00 AM »
Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail

Known as the Red Line, METRORail is a 7.5 mile, 16-station starter light rail line located in Houston, TX.  METRORail stands out among recently completed rail lines because it was funded without the help of the Federal and state governments.  Is something like this possible for Jacksonville?

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Re: Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2008, 08:06:14 AM »
Great article.  The ridership numbers are impressive to say the least.

Now I have a NEW reason to hate Tom Delay.

Maybe the reason the Feds are so rabid for BRT is because buses run on gas, and we have a oil man administration.  Maybe that's the reason Jacksonville is so welded to the BRT idea too. 
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Re: Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2008, 08:50:54 AM »
Short answer, yes.  I think Ockwala is doing what needs to be done and it's that type of tenacity and determination that will make this happen.

I'm reminded of Taggart Transcontinental Railroad in Atlas quote imparticular from the book that stands out, "...They bare their teeth at you from out of their rat holes, thinking you take pleasure in letting your brilliance dim them - while you'd give a year of your life to see a flicker of talent anywhere among them. "  This is what I think of when thinking of our elected officials as is pertains to mass transit (as well as a lot of other things).  I think doing it on our own is the only way to go even though it will probably be the toughest road to travel.
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Re: Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail
« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2008, 11:20:45 AM »
We have some more articles about cities following in the footsteps of Houston, that we'll share in the next few weeks.  You'll be amazed with how creative some of these places are getting to move their plans forward without the help or approval of the FTA.  By doing so, they are able to move things up by as much as 20 years and immediately reap the economic benefits.  The key to going down this route is to have a viable long range transportation plan that the public can get behind.  As of now, we don't have one.  Even JTA will admit that, which is why its so important for them not to tap into the BJP money until one is created.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali


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Re: Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2008, 04:24:55 PM »
Good article! I do think that JTA can benefit on something like this 8).


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Re: Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2008, 10:59:19 PM »
Hey guys, just stumbled across your forum/articles.  I have a house in Springfield, but currently live just outside of Tokyo and I take the train/subway everywhere!  I know it's not really an apple to apple comparison, but the mass transit here is unbelievable and the vast majority of it is composed of rail lines (with stations every .5-2 miles apart, btw . . . i'm not sure where the 5-7 mile figure i saw earlier in an article for station spacing came from), and buses taking over in between. 

The only problem with Jax is the sprawl, but I think a light rail system connecting dense population centers/leisure destinations would be much better than a rapid bus service, despite what the Feds may say.  I think this kind of an addition is just what Jax needs to reduce the load on its clogged highway transit system.



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Re: Rail without the FTA: Houston METRORail
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2008, 11:04:52 PM »
Eric the 5-7 mile figure is a red herring meant to discourage commuter rail.  BTW what are you doing in Tokyo?
Lenny Smash