Author Topic: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow  (Read 829 times)

Lunican

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A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« on: February 09, 2018, 11:10:48 AM »
Jacksonville is going to be one of the first cities to bet on an untested transit technology. Again.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-02-08/a-florida-monorail-makes-way-for-the-robot-bus-of-tomorrow

civil42806

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Re: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2018, 06:06:30 PM »
Jacksonville is going to be one of the first cities to bet on an untested transit technology. Again.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-02-08/a-florida-monorail-makes-way-for-the-robot-bus-of-tomorrow

Don't worry I am sure they have numerous studies showing 10,000 people a day will ride it.  Those transportation experts are never wrong.

SightseerLounge

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Re: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« Reply #2 on: Yesterday at 02:00:37 AM »
And the Learned Men of Cowford will bet the whole farm on the new tech rather notthan just upgrade what you have. This is another joke waiting to be written about Jax!

I can see if they had these things at the airport in key locations. Put these robot buses at St. John's Town Center. Put these robot buses on the outskirts of town where there are no buses, and a driver CAN'T be justified. Extra frequencies could be offered in certain areas.

By the time they rip those monorail beams out of the Skyway, the cost will be more than if they would have just upgraded the monorails and the tech. The conservatives of Red Jax love to talk about wasting their tax dollars. This will be wasting taxpayer dollars.

There are monorails that are "off the shelf" that could replace the old monorails! Bombardier did it once! I'm sure they could do it again! Just like Jax: Let's go backwards while pretending to move forward!

marcuscnelson

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Re: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« Reply #3 on: Yesterday at 11:53:08 AM »
And the Learned Men of Cowford will bet the whole farm on the new tech rather notthan just upgrade what you have. This is another joke waiting to be written about Jax!

I can see if they had these things at the airport in key locations. Put these robot buses at St. John's Town Center. Put these robot buses on the outskirts of town where there are no buses, and a driver CAN'T be justified. Extra frequencies could be offered in certain areas.

By the time they rip those monorail beams out of the Skyway, the cost will be more than if they would have just upgraded the monorails and the tech. The conservatives of Red Jax love to talk about wasting their tax dollars. This will be wasting taxpayer dollars.

There are monorails that are "off the shelf" that could replace the old monorails! Bombardier did it once! I'm sure they could do it again! Just like Jax: Let's go backwards while pretending to move forward!

I'm no expert in public transportation, but I was led to think that the U2C would be less expensive than replacement with a new monorail system, being that no currently existing system is compatible with the current guide beam. At the same time, the U2C is supposed to be easier to upgrade because the vehicles should be easily adjustable to the track. Is this not true? And if so, is there a clear alternative that could be deployed for an equivalent cost to U2C?

Tacachale

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Re: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« Reply #4 on: Yesterday at 02:03:12 PM »
And the Learned Men of Cowford will bet the whole farm on the new tech rather notthan just upgrade what you have. This is another joke waiting to be written about Jax!

I can see if they had these things at the airport in key locations. Put these robot buses at St. John's Town Center. Put these robot buses on the outskirts of town where there are no buses, and a driver CAN'T be justified. Extra frequencies could be offered in certain areas.

By the time they rip those monorail beams out of the Skyway, the cost will be more than if they would have just upgraded the monorails and the tech. The conservatives of Red Jax love to talk about wasting their tax dollars. This will be wasting taxpayer dollars.

There are monorails that are "off the shelf" that could replace the old monorails! Bombardier did it once! I'm sure they could do it again! Just like Jax: Let's go backwards while pretending to move forward!

I'm no expert in public transportation, but I was led to think that the U2C would be less expensive than replacement with a new monorail system, being that no currently existing system is compatible with the current guide beam. At the same time, the U2C is supposed to be easier to upgrade because the vehicles should be easily adjustable to the track. Is this not true? And if so, is there a clear alternative that could be deployed for an equivalent cost to U2C?

No other system will fit the monorail beam, and a standard modern streetcar would apparently be too heavy for the elevated structures. However, the beam could be replaced with other kinds of tracks. A small streetcar or similar vehicle would work just as well as these rubber-tired robot pods.

One of the various issues with the U2C is that the pods are in no way, shape or form a replacement for the Skyway in terms of speed and capacity. They only hold 12 people and go 12 miles an hour (really). The Skyway holds 56 people (and that can be expanded) and go up to 30 miles an hour.

The pods JTA is testing were never designed for use as a rapid transit system. Their real purpose is to help with the "first and last mile problem" - that is, how to get people to and from a fixed transit station. They may be a good supplement to an extended Skyway/streetcar system - ie, you hop in these pods to take you from Central Station to the Landing - but they're simply not an adequate replacement for the Skyway.

Ennis and I will have an article up on Modern Cities before too long that'll explain some of the issues at stake in more detail.
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exnewsman

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Re: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« Reply #5 on: Today at 11:20:52 AM »
Considering no decision has been made on what vehicle the TJA will employ, I'm not sure how you can already be making real comparisons to what they have now. The Skyway cars do not hold 56 people. Each car has room for six sitting and 6-10 (maybe) standing before it starts to get "Japanese train-ish"
There has only been one of what JTA says will be at least four vehicles (maybe more) tested at their test track - all with different specifications (size, speed, etc.). The minimum speed on the test vehicle was very slow, but was for demonstration purposes only and not a top-end speed. Based on the information I read, this vehicle can go 25 mph, which seems plenty fast enough for the routes it would be running.
Different manufacturers have different designs as well. The "pods" represented in the video JTA has on their U2C website, is not expected to be what the final product looks like.
I would agree with you about the use if the Skyway was traveling to the Beaches or Mandarin, but it was not designed to do that either. Their original intent was for a downtown circulator... seems that's exactly what the U2C is going to be... with short extensions into nearby neighborhoods.

Tacachale

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Re: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« Reply #6 on: Today at 12:37:20 PM »
Considering no decision has been made on what vehicle the TJA will employ, I'm not sure how you can already be making real comparisons to what they have now. The Skyway cars do not hold 56 people. Each car has room for six sitting and 6-10 (maybe) standing before it starts to get "Japanese train-ish"
There has only been one of what JTA says will be at least four vehicles (maybe more) tested at their test track - all with different specifications (size, speed, etc.). The minimum speed on the test vehicle was very slow, but was for demonstration purposes only and not a top-end speed. Based on the information I read, this vehicle can go 25 mph, which seems plenty fast enough for the routes it would be running.
Different manufacturers have different designs as well. The "pods" represented in the video JTA has on their U2C website, is not expected to be what the final product looks like.
I would agree with you about the use if the Skyway was traveling to the Beaches or Mandarin, but it was not designed to do that either. Their original intent was for a downtown circulator... seems that's exactly what the U2C is going to be... with short extensions into nearby neighborhoods.

JTA gives 56 for Skyway cars and 12 for the little pods they are testing. If they plan on testing larger pods, they haven’t made any indication. So on that front alone the service will be inferior to what we currently have. And that’s besides all the other red flags, like the fact that this is an unproven technology; that they want it driving in traffic like a tiny, slow bus; and the godawful name.
Do you believe that when the blue jay or another bird sings and the body is trembling, that is a signal that people are coming or something important is about to happen?

thelakelander

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Re: A Florida Monorail Makes Way for the Robot Bus of Tomorrow
« Reply #7 on: Today at 12:39:26 PM »
The pods JTA is testing were never designed for use as a rapid transit system.

With this particular issue, the Skyway is a circulator system that was initially planned to connect into a rapid transit system (LRT) that never came to fruition. Similiar to how Metromover and Metrorail interact in Miami. Ulttimately your average transit user isn't going to give a damn if the selected vehicle is AV or something else. There's a lot of other things that go into making a system reliable and end user friendly.

I doubt what's being tested will fly but I read in one of the recent stories, JTA already knows they'll need larger vehicles. I meant to read through that draft article last week but had to put it on the back burner. I'll take a look at it, fix the technology semantics and edit where I believe editing from a transportation planning perspective is needed this week.
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