Author Topic: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....  (Read 15425 times)

thelakelander

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #75 on: September 03, 2021, 05:36:49 AM »
Nice! That was five years ago and we're no closer to this being true than we were in 2016. I wonder what's the definition of short amount of time? 20, 30, 40 years? Imo, anything outside of a five year horizon should not be labeled short term. Quotes with no dates, approvals, etc. should be classified as hot air.
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #76 on: September 21, 2021, 04:00:25 PM »
Typical of JTA consultants, no surprise, they are coming back with "findings" to support JTA bringing U2C to surrounding areas.  Based on years of seeing such reports, I would say the consultants are one step away from prostitution, and, at $1 million, with a heavy price to taxpayers.  "Studies" like this also said, decades ago, the Skyway would be successful.  JTA used such "studies" to support its construction and this is deja vu.  Taxpayers will be sucker punched once again.

I note that WSP is being "rewarded" with another hefty contract to study JTA's plans for commuter rail.

I have never seen a "study" come back and say a JTA project wasn't feasible.  What are the odds?

Here is today's report:
Quote
If the Jacksonville Transportation Authority expands the Skyway into the Ultimate Urban Circulator, it could lead to infill development near Park Street in Five Points, spur higher density residential projects near UF Health and add life to the streets of LaVilla.

Those were the findings of a $1 million study commissioned by JTA that the authority rolled out Tuesday as part of its blueprint for converting the Skyway into an autonomous vehicle system reaching throughout the urban core.

“Now we are looking, specifically, at the transportation elements to make downtown more attractive from a living perspective, a work perspective, in terms of the right mix of office and retail," JTA CEO Nathaniel Ford Sr. said. "Doing these in advance, we can properly plan and design these facilities well in advance and not try to shoehorn something in after development occurs."

To create the Ultimate Urban Circulator, JTA proposes adding 7.5 miles and 14 stations to the 2.5 miles of track and eight stations used by the Skyway system. The circulator would have five corridors, stretching to Five Points, San Marco, LaVilla, the sports complex and Springfield.

The 528-page report looking at development that could take place along the proposed routes was produced by engineering consultant WSP USA Inc. and real estate consulting firm HR&A and was paid for with a grant from the Federal Transit Administration.

The goal of the study was to lay out a framework for how the transit system could lead to private sector projects.

“The idea (is)that we’ve already done the economic outlook of each individual station, and we understand what those demographics mean,” Clark said. “Even more importantly, this is what the community said they wanted to see. When a developer comes in, that’s an enormous hurdle. When you have certainty, developers come.”

Building out the Ultimate Urban Circulator is expected to cost $432 million.

If the project is done, it would have to be paid for by non-local funds. Although JTA had pushed to use money from the recently expanded gas tax to build the circulator, City Council has forbidden the agency from doing so.

JTA Director of Economic Development Richard Clark said Monday the agency has applied for a $5.65 million grant as part of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s RAISE program. It’s the same pool of discretionary funding that JTA won to build the Bay Street Innovation Corridor, otherwise known as the Phase I of Ultimate Urban Circulator program.

Ford said JTA will also apply for funding through the Federal Transit Administration’s Capital Investment Grants Program.

Work on the first phase of the Ultimate Urban Circulator is slated to begin later this year, and service is expected to begin by 2025. The second phase, converting the Skyway into an autonomous vehicles program, as well as the third phase, expanding the system into neighborhoods, are both expected to begin after the Bay Street Innovation Corridor is completed.

https://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2021/09/21/jta-u2c-tod-study.html?mpaign=ae&utm_content=ja&ana=e_ja_ae&j=25103134&senddate=2021-09-21utm_source=st&utm_medium=en&utm_ca

Charles Hunter

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #77 on: September 21, 2021, 04:42:07 PM »
When will they post the study on their website?

thelakelander

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #78 on: September 21, 2021, 06:46:26 PM »
I would not expect the study to say anything different. However, all of whatever they claim the U2C would stimulate, would happen on its own, with or without the U2C.
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jcjohnpaint

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #79 on: September 21, 2021, 07:14:19 PM »
Wasn’t there a study 12 yers ago?

jcjohnpaint

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #80 on: September 21, 2021, 07:16:08 PM »
Sorry wrong thread. Thought this was on commuter rail.

thelakelander

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #81 on: September 21, 2021, 07:35:35 PM »
There was a JTA study about TOD years ago when J. Keith Brown was around.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

marcuscnelson

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #82 on: September 22, 2021, 12:43:31 AM »
When will they post the study on their website?

Here it is:

https://online.flippingbook.com/view/657074596/

They posted it on Twitter but it's nowhere on their website yet. Starting to read now.
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marcuscnelson

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #83 on: September 22, 2021, 02:28:09 AM »
Hello from the other side!

To answer some of the big questions, this study was not about the actual feasibility of the system itself, nor did it seriously question whether developers would choose to support a transit system with the "flexibility" demands and unique parameters of the U2C. On page 472, they say:

Quote
The U²C is a new, technology-driven mode for which there are no real precedents. However, we looked for light rail transit (LRT) and bus rapid transit (BRT) based on their surface similarities to Jacksonville’s mix of LRT (the Skyway) and BRT and, in certain cases, the lack of a fixed guideway.

The case studies the U2C is compared to include:
  • TriMet Yellow Line, Portland, OR (LRT)
  • Metro Green Line, Minneapolis, MN (LRT)
  • MLK Jr. East Busway, Pittsburgh, PA (BRT)
  • Troost MAX BRT, Kansas City, KS (BRT)
  • Cleveland HealthLine, Cleveland, OH (BRT)
  • Patriot Place Commuter Rail Link, Foxborough, MA (Commuter Rail?)
  • COTA CMAX, Columbus, OH (BRT)

Essentially, the study fundamentally relies on the assumption that the market will treat the U2C like a conventional LRT or BRT system despite its substantial differences, and respond with new development as if it was. The entire study is built on this assumption. Therefore, the actual development potential around stations, particularly those running in mixed traffic is likely somewhat less clear than presented by the study.

There are surprisingly many typos in the document, including several pages where the reference numbers for graphics is wrong. For a report that was supposed to be complete months ago, it's rather odd.

I'm a bit disappointed in the JRTC area vision, namely because it simply proposes turning the old station into some kind of food hall/market, while putting a commuter rail station a block or so away with little clear connection. There doesn't seem to be a vision here for returning intercity rail to downtown, which seems like a big blind spot for feeding ridership and development into any transit system.

Despite those glaring problems, I think it does provide some potentially helpful perspective on problem areas around downtown, and I think it wouldn't hurt to follow some of the recommendations in terms of building an environment for new development even if we might not have a transit system going there yet. If anything, the recommendations for Rosa Parks and the JRTC should be able to happen right now, since the Skyway still exists. There is a small portion about the need for governance and oversight of the development between the city, JTA, and stakeholders, and seeing how much bellyaching we do here about city leadership, that might be something to heed.

I'm sure Lake and everybody else will have more thoughts later, but here are mine right now.
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

Charles Hunter

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #84 on: September 22, 2021, 11:19:25 AM »
When will they post the study on their website?

Here it is:

https://online.flippingbook.com/view/657074596/

They posted it on Twitter but it's nowhere on their website yet. Starting to read now.

Thanks! I shall start reading it. Sucks there's no way to download it. Ideally, I would download a PDF and then make notes in it as I read.
Quote
There are surprisingly many typos in the document, including several pages where the reference numbers for graphics is wrong. For a report that was supposed to be complete months ago, it's rather odd.
This will drive me crazy - lack of quality control and proofreading are major concerns of mine.  If they can't get the obvious things right, can we trust their analysis of less obvious things?

marcus - looking at the timestamps on your posts before and after reading the study - when do you sleep? :D

thelakelander

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #85 on: September 22, 2021, 11:30:59 AM »

Quote
The U²C is a new, technology-driven mode for which there are no real precedents. However, we looked for light rail transit (LRT) and bus rapid transit (BRT) based on their surface similarities to Jacksonville’s mix of LRT (the Skyway) and BRT and, in certain cases, the lack of a fixed guideway.

The case studies the U2C is compared to include:
  • TriMet Yellow Line, Portland, OR (LRT)
  • Metro Green Line, Minneapolis, MN (LRT)
  • MLK Jr. East Busway, Pittsburgh, PA (BRT)
  • Troost MAX BRT, Kansas City, KS (BRT)
  • Cleveland HealthLine, Cleveland, OH (BRT)
  • Patriot Place Commuter Rail Link, Foxborough, MA (Commuter Rail?)
  • COTA CMAX, Columbus, OH (BRT)

Essentially, the study fundamentally relies on the assumption that the market will treat the U2C like a conventional LRT or BRT system despite its substantial differences, and respond with new development as if it was. The entire study is built on this assumption. Therefore, the actual development potential around stations, particularly those running in mixed traffic is likely somewhat less clear than presented by the study.

This assumption alone pretty much discredits the report from having any real viable use other than wrapping fish. A good example of wasting tax dollars. In addition, some of those BRT systems mentioned have not stimulated the amount of TOD they claim. Cleveland's HealthLine is a great example. There are multiple universities and medical centers along Euclid Avenue that were present before that BRT project. When these places spend money on new dorms, student centers, cancer centers, etc., the transit agency and economic development types have included these projects as TOD. However, much of the development would have happened regardless of the presence of transit.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2021, 11:35:57 AM by thelakelander »
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: Is U2C serious? Help me make it make sense....
« Reply #86 on: September 22, 2021, 12:47:36 PM »
Quote
There are surprisingly many typos in the document, including several pages where the reference numbers for graphics is wrong. For a report that was supposed to be complete months ago, it's rather odd.
This will drive me crazy - lack of quality control and proofreading are major concerns of mine.  If they can't get the obvious things right, can we trust their analysis of less obvious things?

What do you expect for "only" a $1 million fee?  No typos or grammar mistakes?  Add another million!

This assumption alone pretty much discredits the report from having any real viable use other than wrapping fish. A good example of wasting tax dollars. In addition, some of those BRT systems mentioned have not stimulated the amount of TOD they claim. Cleveland's HealthLine is a great example. There are multiple universities and medical centers along Euclid Avenue that were present before that BRT project. When these places spend money on new dorms, student centers, cancer centers, etc., the transit agency and economic development types have included these projects as TOD. However, much of the development would have happened regardless of the presence of transit.

Ennis, my point above too.  These "studies" are for one reason only - to provide "cover" for all those decision makers about to make a politically motivated and train-wreck of a decision that will cost the taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars.  The consultants are nothing more than paid stooges backing up other stooges who stand to personally benefit from this project.

Anyone who is intimately familiar with a community and experienced with development could probably come to an accurate conclusion on the feasibility of these projects in a few days or less at virtually no cost.  And, the conclusion wouldn't be a white wash or pre-ordained "this-is-feasible-so-go-for-it" endorsement.  (It might even be absent typos!)  But, that doesn't serve JTA's purposes so we don't get that.

If you watch Schitt's Creek, their "City Hall" operates with 4 people sitting around a table that arm wrestle decisions.  No consultants with fancy studies.  That process seems better if for no other reason than at least they don't spend millions of taxpayer dollars to come to conclusions they already had in mind to make.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2021, 01:32:24 AM by jaxlongtimer »