Author Topic: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C  (Read 7948 times)

Des

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #15 on: March 02, 2020, 07:37:39 AM »
I don't understand why they're pushing forward with no real public input. I'm confident that if I were to stop some random person on the street and asked whether they would prefer an expanded skyway or an autonomous bus they would pick the skyway.

If these buses had their own lane then that would be okay, but it doesn't seem that way. Now we have these buses going 15 mph intermingling with regular traffic? Sounds like an awful plan. I also don't get why we can't have both the skyway and the bus to run simultaneously...

bl8jaxnative

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #16 on: March 02, 2020, 01:15:39 PM »
Just as much as a streetcar but significantly less capacity and more risk! So much for saving money.

I'd bet there isn't a single trolley in this country built these days that cost so little for 3 miles.  Not even close.  Any takers?

LMGTFY

http://www.heritagetrolley.org/artcileBringBackStreetcars7.htm

Thank you for proving my point, nothing close.  And I'm seroius.  All those projects were more.  San Pedro actually cost over $10million + was only that because of existing track.

thelakelander

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #17 on: March 02, 2020, 01:58:06 PM »
^Evidently, it costs close to $30 million for four blocks of Skyway conversion. That's right up there with LRT.
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marcuscnelson

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2020, 11:49:47 PM »
JTA posted this video of an industry forum from February.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0J9KxUgb6I

The general attitude that stands out to me is "Jacksonville will be the very first city in the country to attempt implementing this as a mode of transit, and this is somehow a good thing because innovation."

Also, I assume someone here knew already, but Phase 1 (the Bay Street Innovation Corridor) is apparently scheduled to begin operation in 2023.
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thelakelander

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #19 on: October 12, 2020, 09:32:02 AM »
I'm an industry guy and I remain pretty skeptical for a variety of reasons. What I've heard and seen so far has Skyway 2.0 written all over it. This mode of transit is already out there. It's not rocket science how it works, what the pros are and what the cons are. The bigger question that people don't want to address is, is it right for Jax that we're selecting to be an experiment instead of doing the proven basics better and efficiently with the end user's/community's needs as the top priority in our decision making process?
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bl8jaxnative

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #20 on: October 12, 2020, 01:36:27 PM »

The street lights & other "smart street" stuff would be interesting.

I can't wrap my mind around what they really think they're going to do with the Skyway.  Not this high level fluff crap.   If they're doing this in 2023, they need to have the vehicles they're going to use - that design - undergoing serious testing right now. 

To date, I haven't seen anything from JTA that touches on how the system will work and testing that design.  And you need to have that before you can have testing.


If this was something that could be bet on, I'd bet on them axing the hybrid skyway portion.

marcuscnelson

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #21 on: October 12, 2020, 08:37:02 PM »
I don't understand how, especially in a city dominated by conservatives, the people in charge can look at this plan and think anything other than "dear God, you've made us the guinea pig!"

It's not that I don't believe there is a future where AVs will be running downtown, but the idea that we're going to be the very first in the nation to put this technology into production when there's so much basic fundamental stuff we haven't done right is just… wow.

This is technology that Tesla and Uber, companies that will make billions if they can figure this out, haven't figured out, and yet somehow JTA of all people is going to be the one that not only implements it, but makes it a backbone of urban transportation somehow necessary for economic development.

According to David Cawton in this Twitter thread, Bay Street is under "active procurement as we speak." Apparently he also doesn't understand the difference between a streetcar and a bus or AV.
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

thelakelander

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #22 on: October 13, 2020, 10:22:52 AM »

The street lights & other "smart street" stuff would be interesting.

I can't wrap my mind around what they really think they're going to do with the Skyway.  Not this high level fluff crap.   If they're doing this in 2023, they need to have the vehicles they're going to use - that design - undergoing serious testing right now. 

To date, I haven't seen anything from JTA that touches on how the system will work and testing that design.  And you need to have that before you can have testing.


If this was something that could be bet on, I'd bet on them axing the hybrid skyway portion.

The Skyway conversion component of this that appears to be the most expensive, challenging and puzzling for the use of small AVs, IMO. If the vision of the community is to densify downtown, then the selected mass transit mode will need to be able to have the long term capacity to do so. Especially, a system featuring an elevated fixed guideway. What's proposed appears to have less capacity than the Skyway.



The technology under consideration could also be described as a driverless minivan with a max speed of around 12mph. Maybe it's something different a decade from now, but we're not there yet. So sharing lanes with regular traffic removes many of the safety benefits and likely leads to traffic congestion and choke points (see the Lake Nona example, where frustrated drivers recklessly speed around the slow moving vehicles) in an urbanized environment.



The AV technology highlighted so far appears to be a great first/last mile mobility solution because it offers the same flexibility as a car or bicycle by not having to conform to a fixed route. However, that flexibility goes away when they're installed on the Skyway's elevated infrastructure. Now you have a low capacity, slow moving vehicle in direct competition with Lyft, Uber, taxis and any other entity competing for passengers. I love Jax, but no way is JTA (no offense) figuring something out that won't be made obsolete and foolish fairly quickly by the private sector. If you need a ride from TIAA Bank Field to a Southbank hotel, why would you ride the U2C's circuitous route over Uber (which can drive faster and cross the Main Street Bridge)?

So, if we're not looking to help stimulate TOD for a denser urban environment, meaning we'll need to plan for a higher capacity system (or at least equal to the existing Skyway vehicles) and secure 100% dedicated ROW to efficiently move higher volume ridership, I'm not sure of what we're trying to do, regardless of the selected technology.

The questions and concerns I've mentioned above are just a few of many I have that we'll be sitting down with JTA to get their perspective on.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2020, 10:42:26 AM by thelakelander »
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Ken_FSU

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #23 on: October 13, 2020, 10:37:39 AM »
^I was just thinking about this a couple of days ago.

As someone who takes the Hart Bridge/Bay Street to and from work every morning, I would be FURIOUS to be stuck behind a clown car going 13 mph on a street where traffic can typically move in excess of 30 mph.

Can't imagine how uncomfortable it would be for the riders either, with vehicles swerving around you, honking, giving you the finger, etc.

Really hostile environment for this type of thing.

thelakelander

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #24 on: October 13, 2020, 10:46:52 AM »
In Lake Nona, they now pull over on the side of the street to allow the line of cars that build up behind them, to pass safely. Nevertheless, during my AV ride, a driver still drove around in the opposing lane, through a four-way stop sign controlled intersection to get in front of us. Luckily, there were no pedestrians in the crosswalk. In an urbanized environment, this is a major reason why 100% dedicated ROW or lanes make most sense.
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Ken_FSU

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #25 on: October 13, 2020, 10:57:05 AM »
^I'm sure these vehicles all have AI systems in place to prevent them from running into other vehicles or objects, but I can't imagine they'd be good at avoiding being hit by other drivers in scenarios like this.

I question the overall safety and sanity, for all parties involved, of deploying small, slow moving, unmanned vehicles into mixed traffic that, at best, can go half the posted speed limit.

Feels like a terrible accident waiting to happen.

tufsu1

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #26 on: October 13, 2020, 01:15:45 PM »
Gainesville is running these vehicles on SW 2nd Avenue connecting UF to downtown. From what I hear, it goes VERY slow through the roundabouts.

HART (the transit agency in Tampa) was supposed to start testing one 18 months ago, but it was delayed. The shuttle finally started running on the Marion Street Transitway in downtown this week. Top speed = 15 mph.

BridgeTroll

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #27 on: October 13, 2020, 03:19:02 PM »
^I was just thinking about this a couple of days ago.

As someone who takes the Hart Bridge/Bay Street to and from work every morning, I would be FURIOUS to be stuck behind a clown car going 13 mph on a street where traffic can typically move in excess of 30 mph.

Can't imagine how uncomfortable it would be for the riders either, with vehicles swerving around you, honking, giving you the finger, etc.

Really hostile environment for this type of thing.


This would be another reason for people to avoid downtown...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

Charles Hunter

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #28 on: October 13, 2020, 03:50:24 PM »
The block of Bay between Ocean and Main will be an interesting challenge when the AVs begin service.  Currently, there are four westbound lanes, plus a parking lane along the north side of the street.  The southernmost lane is left-turn only onto the Main Street Bridge. The next lane has a choice of turning toward the Bridge, or continuing west on Bay.  The next 2 lanes continue west on Bay, with the northernmost, during the morning peak, backing up as people enter the garage just west of Main.  Once the FDOT removes the Independent Drive on-ramp to the Main Street Bridge, there will be more traffic in the 2 lanes going to the Bridge.

Conceivably, the parking lane on the north side of Bay could be converted for westbound AV use.  Where will the eastbound AVs go?
Will the 2 eastbound lanes that begin at Ocean Street be extended west to Pearl? to Broad? or all the way to Lee (where there is one lane coming from Myrtle Ave.)?  Having only 2 westbound lanes between Ocean and Main might be a problem, especially with the diversion of the Independent Ramp traffic.  While dealing with 15 MPH (max?) AVs.

Also, where will the AVs stop along Bay Street - causing even more traffic disruption?

marcuscnelson

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Re: JTA planning to seek bids to build, run U2C
« Reply #29 on: October 15, 2020, 12:27:14 AM »
Innovation!
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