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Charleston Transit | Commuter Rail, Light Rail


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117 replies to this topic

#1 vicupstate

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Posted 14 September 2005 - 12:13 PM

Light Rail project may get added to projects funded by 1/2 cent Sales Tax

This article gives mention to a project to connect Summerville and Charleston via Ligth rail. This is a new one on me. Does anyone have any info. on it? SPecifically what route/stops are proposed?

 

#2 MikesLogic

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Posted 14 September 2005 - 06:45 PM

That is an extension to the proposed light rail from the Charleston visitor center to the magnolia development in the neck area(I believe they already have the right of way for this portion.) One would go out to Summerville parallel to I-26(I think,) the other would follow Rivers ave to Moncks Corner. I have no idea where all the stops are planned.

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Edited by MikesLogic, 14 September 2005 - 06:46 PM.


#3 Spartan

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Posted 14 September 2005 - 07:27 PM

We have discussed this before. I think they brought it up last about 6-8 months ago. I still think its a good idea :)

#4 Jerseyman4

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Posted 15 September 2005 - 11:42 AM

That is awsome that light rail is being considered between Chas. and Summerville/Moncks Corner! This will give people a choice who live inland on whether to drive I-26 or take the train since most of the metro area is car reliant. I hope this goes through!

#5 Spartan

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 04:04 PM

Indeed. If you check the main SC forum there is a very interesting thread that discusses which city in SC will be the first to get rail transit of some sort. Right now Charleston and Greenville are the only two, with RH in a separate class since it may get a leg from Charlotte's LRT.

#6 bobliocatt

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 04:13 PM

Hopefully, everything works out. Charleston has always been a metro where I thought some form of rail would work very well there. This line would also benefit the city by finally being a catalyst to attract redevelopment in the Neck area.

#7 TheBostonian

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 04:19 PM

Weird parellels in Boston. Somerville, MA is getting light rail after a fight. We also have a Charlestown (think: battle of Bunker Hill).

#8 Charleston native

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Posted 19 December 2005 - 10:17 AM

Light rail for Charleston is still alive and pushing foward, despite it being very slow, according to the article link below.

The Futrex company has been pushing for financing of a light rail system in Chas for 10 years and still is trying. Company President Byron Waldman says he has reason to be encouraged that Futrex soon could land private financing or a contract to build one of its systems. The Charleston Citywide Local Development Corp. recently helped the situation by deciding that the company did not need to make any payments on a taxpayer-financed loan worth roughly $1.7 million for up to three more years.

Futrex came to the Charleston area with bold plans for a new mass-transit system, saying that 1,000 people could be employed building it. The company has plans for a high-speed, low-cost monorail that would be unusual in that the cars would not sit atop a beam, as monorails do, but would hang from the side of a beam so that cars could travel in both directions at once. A plan that won some federal financing called for a working, $35 million Futrex system serving Charleston International Airport. The original plan was a loop from the airport to the Charleston Area Convention Center, but it fell through due to lack of investment dollars.

Monorail plan still on board

#9 monsoon

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Posted 19 December 2005 - 05:19 PM

Futrex is developing monobeam transit, not monorail. There is a bit of a difference as shown in the link below. It does address a lot of the issues of building transit in the already built environment, but it is more expensive than LRT and unproven.

I wondered what happened to Futrex as this was one of the very first threads posted here on UrbanPlanet. You can review it below.

SC & GA Develop Advanced Monobean Transit

Edited by metro.m, 19 December 2005 - 05:24 PM.


#10 Spartan

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Posted 20 December 2005 - 10:34 AM

It seems that there are two deparate movements in Charleston. I have read many articles about the proposed LRT, but very few on this. I now think that this may be the hold up to the entire mass transit issue in Charleston. The LRT proponents could be waiting to see if this is going to take off or not.

#11 Charleston native

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Posted 20 December 2005 - 10:49 AM

I actually like the idea of a monobeam or monorail that Futrex is proposing instead of standard light rail with overhanging wires. Not only is a monobeam more aesthetically pleasing, it would be the most cost-efficient, especially with the potential of hurricane damage. Standard LRT wires and poles would easily be damaged due to high winds and downed trees, but a concrete monobeam would have minimal, if any damage.

Futrex has proposed several routes...even the new Cooper River bridge has the ability to take a monobeam or monorail. One of the primary routes is to start from the Chas Visitor Center DT and would make stops at the Neck (Magnolia or Midtown developments), Uptown (Noisette and near the proposed Hunley museum), the coliseum/convention center, and the airport.

#12 Spartan

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Posted 20 December 2005 - 05:47 PM

Good point. I didn't think about that. While monobeam may be more expensive initself, it may end up being less expensive due to the purchasing of rights of way and parcels outright for stations. Which reminds me, with elevated structures like that you can't have the 'informal' stops at ground level (as opposed to the more formal 'station') which may also increase costs.

#13 monsoon

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Posted 20 December 2005 - 06:05 PM

Generally, with the exception of street trolleys, you don't have LRVs making informal stops outside of designated stations.

#14 Spartan

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Posted 20 December 2005 - 06:57 PM

Right, but by that I mean they have the option of having ground level platforms with minimal structures associated with it. Particularly in more dense urban settings. Iwth the elevated monobeam you actually have to build up to the track.

#15 monsoon

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Posted 20 December 2005 - 09:15 PM

Actually there isn't any technical reason why you could not lower a track to enter a ground level station.

#16 wellington

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Posted 05 January 2006 - 08:13 PM

Do any other communities around the world have monobeam transit? If so, it would be a novelty to have the first one in Charleston.

#17 monsoon

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Posted 05 January 2006 - 09:33 PM

Most likely Charleston would be the first it it was built.

#18 krazeeboi

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Posted 08 July 2006 - 03:21 AM

How about commuter rail?

#19 monsoon

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Posted 08 July 2006 - 06:30 AM

If we are talking about moving people from Summerville to the lower penisula, then CR makes a lot more sense. What is freight train situation in Charleston like? Would there be a way to add a station(s) to one of these lines?

#20 MikesLogic

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Posted 08 July 2006 - 09:09 AM

Freight is fairly heavy on both those lines. This recent discussion has caused a bit of a buzz in the Charleston area.

http://www.charlesto...

The commuter train, which would cost about $46 million according to the CARTA plan, would stop in downtown Summerville, at the Centre Pointe shopping mall off International Boulevard Avenue in North Charleston, and at the Visitor's Center on the Charleston Peninsula, using active and idle rail lines already laid.
...
Improving the CARTA bus system to handle commuter train riders "can get done. But you've got to start developing communities so they're 'transit friendly,'" he said, something that's not being done now.


In order to really make this work the bus routes will need to be thought out carefully. I'm glad to see the RTMA looking at tying in with CARTA that will provide enhanced mass transit service to even the rural parts of the Charleston metro.




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