Author Topic: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal  (Read 1634 times)

jaxlongtimer

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1024
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #30 on: April 21, 2021, 05:43:06 PM »
^ There are other spending options if the 50/50 split needs to be maintained. JTA can of course build roads. Based on the JRTC (including Greyhound), they obviously could also build a new Amtrak station. Also seems to me their charter would allow construction of much of the Emerald Trail.

There area also a few hundred roads in the urban core that could use a "makeover" (that would also allow for laying sewer and water lines under them while under construction) after over 100 years of neglect.  If they need help finding transportation projects to spend $400 +/- million on I am sure the friends of the Jaxson would be at the ready to assist  8)!

marcuscnelson

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1271
  • Gen Z - Tired of the status quo
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #31 on: April 22, 2021, 08:09:53 PM »
The bill text is now up:

https://www.coj.net/getattachment/ca712cd8-8293-498c-bef0-e08d3c89e2a6/GC-1422769-v6-Leg__2021-__Local_Option_Gas_Tax_(LOGT)_1-5_cents_and_9th_cent-(As-Filed-on-4-21-21-mcs).pdf.aspx?lang=en-US

It's ORD 2021-0223.

Also, ORD 2021-0235 amends the Capital Improvement Plan to invest $100m on septic tank removal over the next two years.
So, to the young people fighting in this movement for change, here is my charge: march in the streets, protest, run for school committee or city council or the state legislature. And win. - Ed Markey

jaxjags

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 360
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #32 on: April 23, 2021, 06:03:26 PM »
Just an opinion, but this situation is worse than lot J.  $300 million plus for unproven technology to offset only $100 million for septic tank removal. Not good. How about a referendum for U2C. Will be voted down, as would have lot J. Not smart spending of our capital tax $.

By the way, the Orlando FDOT district does design "nicer" sound walls, bridges, landscaping and does better maintenance on interstate and state roads. Was there a couple days to "just get away".

marcuscnelson

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1271
  • Gen Z - Tired of the status quo
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #33 on: April 25, 2021, 02:11:19 PM »
Nat Ford was on News4Jax this morning about the U2C (skip to 15:44).

There's a very strange quote by Ford in response to a question by Rick Mullaney about President Biden's American Jobs Plan (emphasis mine).

Quote
Mullaney: So what about potential federal funding in President Biden's plan for the Skyway in particular but for some of the infrastructure needs here in Duval County?

Ford: We're very exited about this plan because the JTA for the past few years, we have just been able to run the table as it relates to… discretionary, competitive grants, so we're competing against cities around the country. It is those communities that have a clear, delineated plan, a clear focus of what they want to accomplish, that have some local skin in the game in terms of what we're investing gives us the best opportunity to get federal funding, and so, you know, once we go through this process, we will immediately pivot towards going to Washington DC, and identifying additional funding from the federal government to help support these projects, and so, we're very excited about what's happening in Washington DC and what's happening here at home, and we think we can bring that together for a successful outcome.

Is it just me, or is this suggesting that JTA is going to ask for additional federal funding on top of the funding already sought via the gas tax? Which leads me to ask, how much does any of this stuff actually cost?
So, to the young people fighting in this movement for change, here is my charge: march in the streets, protest, run for school committee or city council or the state legislature. And win. - Ed Markey

WAJAS

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 48
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #34 on: April 25, 2021, 02:44:51 PM »
Nat Ford was on News4Jax this morning about the U2C (skip to 15:44).

There's a very strange quote by Ford in response to a question by Rick Mullaney about President Biden's American Jobs Plan (emphasis mine).

Quote
Mullaney: So what about potential federal funding in President Biden's plan for the Skyway in particular but for some of the infrastructure needs here in Duval County?

Ford: We're very exited about this plan because the JTA for the past few years, we have just been able to run the table as it relates to… discretionary, competitive grants, so we're competing against cities around the country. It is those communities that have a clear, delineated plan, a clear focus of what they want to accomplish, that have some local skin in the game in terms of what we're investing gives us the best opportunity to get federal funding, and so, you know, once we go through this process, we will immediately pivot towards going to Washington DC, and identifying additional funding from the federal government to help support these projects, and so, we're very excited about what's happening in Washington DC and what's happening here at home, and we think we can bring that together for a successful outcome.

Is it just me, or is this suggesting that JTA is going to ask for additional federal funding on top of the funding already sought via the gas tax? Which leads me to ask, how much does any of this stuff actually cost?
I think JTA has been clear that this would fully fund the U2C, but they've been unclear about the amount and what it goes towards specifically.

It seems he's claiming that if additional funding is found through the Biden bill or elsewhere, then the price from the local allotment would be reduced. He didn't say that explicitly, but that's how I interpret it. That's another Q for JTA and the City though. I kind of get the argument here. We want to fully fund this system, but we don't have commitments from the state or federal sources yet. Therefore, for now, we'll fund it ourselves. The problem is that it shows a lack of need from Jax though. Would that diminish their ability to get the funds in the first place?

thelakelander

  • The Jaxson
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 32390
    • Modern Cities
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #35 on: April 25, 2021, 03:21:09 PM »
I took it as they see that billion is gas tax money as an easy way to get 100% funding (of what they believe is the total cost as of now), without having to compete on the merits of this project against others across the country seeking state and federal dollars. In the event, the Biden deal becomes reality, they'll seek funding there too.

However, I get the impression that they don't know the actual costs and they'd be lying if they said they did. Quite frankly, what they are proposing doesn't exist and the technology they are relying on still has things that need to be resolved first. As solutions are developed, there will be costs associated with those solutions that no one knows yet. To sum it up, the transportation planner in me believes that the cost will continue to rise. That's pretty much a no brainer.

What I can't understand is the average Jacksonville politician. For years, the public has asked for things like commuter rail, streetcar, extending the Skyway, LRT, better local bus service, etc., only to be dismissed by the average politician claiming these things cost to much. Now this crazy Skyway to AV conversion thing pops up, costs a hell of a lot more money than the conventional things that are commonly known, and many are all in, without taking the time to even put in the research on the technical issues, costs and timeframe related to resolving them.

It's like either you're totally against the gas tax, projects in it be damned, or you're for getting the billion in revenue from it, projects in it be damned. This A and B approach to things is so Jacksonville. It's why we blow a ton of tax money without ever achieving the bill of goods historically being sold to the average taxpayer. Seriously, can we get a few of leaders to objectively look at the actual draft project list and question if this is the exact set of things we want to pay for with this potential revenue source?
« Last Edit: April 25, 2021, 10:51:40 PM by thelakelander »
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

jaxjags

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 360
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #36 on: April 25, 2021, 06:44:10 PM »
Unfortunately the list of priorities has already been set.  Again a Jax approach. Public input not needed. So it becomes take or leave it much like lot J.  I agree with you council needs to step up and question the project list. Hope someone does.

jaxlongtimer

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1024
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #37 on: April 25, 2021, 10:46:01 PM »
JTA claims it must stick with the Skyway so as not to disenfranchise the Feds for future projects.  In reality, the Skyway is a proven failure and JTA is abandoning the Skyway because the only remains will be a concrete "pathway" repurposed for another "demonstration project."  Everything that makes it the Skyway otherwise will be gone - the cars, the track, the maintenance facilities, the software... basically anything technologically unique to the Skyway.

I can't imagine the Feds being sucker-punched twice in relation to the Skyway.  They would be better off waiving the supposed $45 million "penalty" for giving up on the Skyway 15 to 20 years early than pouring hundreds of millions more into making pretend the Skyway is still alive and well.  I can only hope the Feds are smarter and have more backbone than the local yokels.

thelakelander

  • The Jaxson
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 32390
    • Modern Cities
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #38 on: April 25, 2021, 11:00:57 PM »
Here's the thing though, they can stick with the Skyway without $379 million from the gas tax. They can stick with the Skyway without converting it to AVs or expanding it to places it likely won't have the capacity to serve anyway. All these things are completely different discussions. There are also a lot more options that could be considered that make sense. For whatever reason, we don't prefer to go the common logical route. Only in Jax do we box ourselves into these take it or leave extreme scenarios.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

Charles Hunter

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3344
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #39 on: April 26, 2021, 10:09:58 AM »
Has anyone seen documentation of the UMTA/FTA penalty?

bl8jaxnative

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 750
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #40 on: April 26, 2021, 10:36:08 AM »
NOthing unique about JAX with this.  To make the sale on anything, there has to be some constraints.  Like in this case, this is -- SUPPOSEDLY -- our one opportunity to expand mass transit.   Other places do the same, only instead of wee lil' robo quads they claim that it can only be done with trolleys and trams and only now.

When they do it and it doesn't work, they claim it wasn't done enough.  It wasn't expanded enough.   

That's happen here in JAX too.  If this doesn't happen, there's a cohort of urban transit folks who will claim it doesn't work cuz it wasn't expanded.  If they expand it, they'll claim it wasn't expanded enough.

But it's all the same sort of rhetoric.  And they create an artificial deadline, sort of take or you'll never get it thing.

Same sort of crap goes on in car selling.  Never mind there's a few million cars - new and used - for sale.  Sales person almost always works to create some sort of artificial deadline.  And of course something that one car they have is unique.



bl8jaxnative

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 750
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #41 on: April 26, 2021, 10:37:32 AM »
Jacsonville - at this time - should not spend half a billion on experimental robo quads.


At this time ---> Jacksonville should raise the gas tax.



We can always expand the Skyway later, if we choose.   That's always a possibility going forward.  It doesn't have to be done in 2021.

thelakelander

  • The Jaxson
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 32390
    • Modern Cities
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #42 on: April 26, 2021, 10:50:02 AM »
Jacksonville - at this time - should not spend half a billion on experimental robo quads.

At this time ---> Jacksonville should raise the gas tax.

This is where I'm at with the gas tax. Drop the amount dedicated to the Skyway/U2C (it doesn't kill the pet project) and distribute the extra cash to fund other local infrastructure projects across the city that aren't on the list.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

jaxlongtimer

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1024
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #43 on: April 26, 2021, 07:37:11 PM »
Lyft giving up on perfecting AV technology.  Selling out to Toyota.  Quotes indicate we have a long way to go to full AV's.  But, maybe JTA knows something the rest of the world doesn't. ;D

A few quotes:
Quote
Lyft is the latest company to abandon the expensive development of AVs

Lyft is selling its autonomous vehicle division to a subsidiary of Toyota — the latest in a series of acquisitions that is seeing the world of self-driving cars grow increasingly smaller...

...The deal, which is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021, brings to an end Lyft’s four-year journey toward developing and deploying its own self-driving cars. The company follows its rival Uber in off-loading its costly autonomous vehicle division in a bid to stop losing so much money...

...Lyft launched its Level 5 division in 2017 with the bold claim that by 2021, “a majority” of its rides would take place in autonomous vehicles. The company hired hundreds of engineers to staff a 50,000-square-foot facility in Palo Alto, California. A year later, Lyft acquired the UK-based augmented reality startup Blue Vision Labs for a reported $72 million in the hopes of accelerating its efforts.

But the prediction that most of Lyft’s rides would take place in AVs never came to pass. In fact, despite some technical successes, autonomous vehicles remain very far away from any kind of mass adoption. Most AVs on the road today are still test vehicles, with most of the major players refusing to commit to a timeline for commercialization...

...Last year, Toyota broke ground on its “Woven City,” the 175-acre site of a former car factory in Japan. The automaker hopes to transform it into a “prototype city of the future” where it can test autonomous vehicles, innovative street design, smart home technology, robotics, and new mobility products on a population of real people who would live there full time.

https://www.theverge.com/2021/4/26/22404406/toyota-lyft-autonomous-vehicle-acquisition-amount-deal

« Last Edit: April 26, 2021, 07:39:22 PM by jaxlongtimer »

WAJAS

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 48
Re: Four alternative paths for JTA's Skyway U2C proposal
« Reply #44 on: April 26, 2021, 07:43:26 PM »
Lyft giving up on perfecting AV technology.  Selling out to Toyota.  Quotes indicate we have a long way to go to full AV's.  But, maybe JTA knows something the rest of the world doesn't. ;D

A few quotes:
Quote
Lyft is the latest company to abandon the expensive development of AVs

Lyft is selling its autonomous vehicle division to a subsidiary of Toyota — the latest in a series of acquisitions that is seeing the world of self-driving cars grow increasingly smaller...

...The deal, which is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021, brings to an end Lyft’s four-year journey toward developing and deploying its own self-driving cars. The company follows its rival Uber in off-loading its costly autonomous vehicle division in a bid to stop losing so much money...

...Lyft launched its Level 5 division in 2017 with the bold claim that by 2021, “a majority” of its rides would take place in autonomous vehicles. The company hired hundreds of engineers to staff a 50,000-square-foot facility in Palo Alto, California. A year later, Lyft acquired the UK-based augmented reality startup Blue Vision Labs for a reported $72 million in the hopes of accelerating its efforts.

But the prediction that most of Lyft’s rides would take place in AVs never came to pass. In fact, despite some technical successes, autonomous vehicles remain very far away from any kind of mass adoption. Most AVs on the road today are still test vehicles, with most of the major players refusing to commit to a timeline for commercialization...

...Last year, Toyota broke ground on its “Woven City,” the 175-acre site of a former car factory in Japan. The automaker hopes to transform it into a “prototype city of the future” where it can test autonomous vehicles, innovative street design, smart home technology, robotics, and new mobility products on a population of real people who would live there full time.

https://www.theverge.com/2021/4/26/22404406/toyota-lyft-autonomous-vehicle-acquisition-amount-deal

I've already said this, but the AV level that Lyft/Uber are looking for isn't what JTA needs to be successful. Lyft/Uber need Level 5. JTA needs a relatively limited version of Level 4.