Author Topic: Bus Rapid Transit vs. Commuter Rail I  (Read 1721 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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Bus Rapid Transit vs. Commuter Rail I
« on: July 03, 2006, 10:07:22 AM »
Bus Rapid Transit vs. Commuter Rail I

<BR /><BR />ALL ABOUT JACKSONVILLE’S PLANNED BRT SYSTEMBus Rapid Transit vs. Commuter Rail – Part I of a 5 part seriesI-95   I-10 congestion in June 2006. Imagine this scene in 2025<BR /><BR />Full Article<BR />
« Last Edit: June 24, 2007, 12:14:16 AM by Lunican »


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Light Rail Costs?
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2006, 03:47:01 PM »
Where did JTA or Metro Jacksonville get the numbers on the costs of Light Rail? The reason it is called Light Rail is not only slightly smaller vehicles LRV´s but also slightly smaller costs then Heavy Rail Transit HRT. What the public doesn´t know and JTA isn´t saying is that Light Rail, Heavy Rail, Freight Rail, High Speed Rail, even old time trolley cars (real ones, not the potato chip truck with bench seats type) are all RAIL. That is they CAN all operate on regular railroad tracks. Both Portland and San Diego LRT systems operate over freight railroad tracks. All day, early morning until late night the LRV´s rule, then about midnight, diesel freight locomotives bring in the various freight cars to serve online industries. The only expense with light rail has been an overhead electric wire or a third rail. I can not imagine that posts and wire cost more then asphalt, concrete and lane dividers. Way back when Jacksonville had a route known as "the most beautiful trolley line (Main Street route, Jacksonville Traction Company) in the world", the City of Sanford, operated a wireless LRV over the "Sanford and Everglades RR" a freight line from Sanford to Cameron City. This car went down the middle of First Street in Sanford then turned off onto the S&E Railroad´s private freight trackage and sprinted out of town to Cameron City. Who´s to say that a modern LRV couldn´t be built with diesel power, battery power or some combination of both if desired? I can´t think of a single transit builder that would turn down the order. So if LRT CAN operate on freight railroad tracks (it can), and if it is slightly smaller (it is), can be powered other then overhead electric (it has), and can still operate in train form for economy (it does), then why would this cost more then HRT? (it doesn´t). But you are SO RIGHT that Jacksonville is unique in having rail lines in all directions (there was even one to the Beach and Mayport but they took it up)which begs the question of WHY NOT?


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light rail costs
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2006, 04:27:48 PM »
The reason light rail would be more expensive than heavy rail in Jacksonville is because of the existing infrastructure. A heavy commuter rail system would not require land aquisition or track construction, because it would use the existing freight rail lines.

Electrifying a rail line can be very expensive, and in Jacksonville's case, it makes more sense to use Diesel locomotives pulling passenger cars or DMU self propelled rail cars.

Currently, the FRA will not allow Light Rail Vehicles to operate on the same tracks as freight trains because the LRV's do not meet crash worthiness guidelines. Operating alongside freight trains is something that would be required in order to get a system running in Jacksonville.

Also, freight trains can not run on tracks designed for light rail vehicles for several reasons:

1. The radius of the curves are too sharp.
2. Freight trains will not fit under the catenary that light rail uses.
3. Modern freight locomotives and rail cars would crush the track into the ground because of the light weight rail that is typically used.

For these reasons, Metro Jacksonville has decided that an Urban Commuter Rail system is the most practical for Jacksonville.

big ben

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Re: Bus Rapid Transit vs. Commuter Rail I
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2007, 09:42:52 PM »
i've heard of other cities getting massive federal funding matching by donating existing rights of way for light rail projects.  something like getting $300 million by donating $100 million worth of right of way.  it kinda sounds like jacksonville doesn't have this much right of way, but i could be wrong.  this was also 1980s/early 1990s money.


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Re: Bus Rapid Transit vs. Commuter Rail I
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2007, 09:56:26 PM »
We do have 5 miles of abandoned rail right-of-way from downtown to Gateway Mall.  Unfortunately, the city sees it being more beneficial to it's most transit dependent communities by converting it into a jogging multi-purpose peice of asphalt instead.  Can you imagine roller blading through the heart of the Bloody Block?  To enjoy this trail you better bring some heat.
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