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Mike D

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Everything posted by Mike D

  1. I hope Mike keeps up the fight. The busway is a stupid idea. Rail makes way more sense for the Hartford/New Britain/Waterbury corridor. I need to find out more about this "Knowledge Corridor" in Massachusetts. Hope this can be some sort of precedent for Central CT.
  2. Yes, CT, get this done! Its been too long. And put Hartford-Waterbury rail in there too! This way they can get a better deal on buying railcars, signals, new tracks, lighting and stations.
  3. The Mets and, more likely, the Yankees would be the biggest losers if the Rays relocated to Hartford or New Haven. It would be the Yankees because the Rays are in the same division with the Yankees and Sox. Baseball and pro football largely tend to draw their fans regionally while hockey and pro basketball tend to draw fans more locally if there is a baseball and/or football team in the same market. An NHL team has a much better chance of succeeding in central Connecticut than an MLB for that very reason. The Bruins, Rangers, Islanders and Devils aren't popular in Connecticut. Then again, the Islanders aren't that popular in New York City anymore. I see more Rangers fans on the LIRR than Isles fans. On the other hand there is a significant amount of corporate might in southern Connecticut and around Hartford, probably more so in southern Connecticut because of its proximity to New York City, so putting a team in an area that can attract both areas might be desirable to Rays ownership. Not just that, but if 36-38 home games out of 82 are going to be against the Yankees and the Sox and maybe three more against the Mets during inter-league play, fans of those three teams, in Connecticut and in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, might come to see their teams play the Rays there.
  4. ConnDOT is still pushing for this idiotic busway? They've been doing so since I was a student at UConn in 2000. Even back then, I thought it was a ridiculous idea, seeing that there was a perfectly good right-of-way for trains to run there. Definitely no need to back in and out of Berlin station. Busway supporters would jump all over that issue. Didn't there used to be a track junction just north of the Berlin station that allowed trains coming from Waterbury/New Britain to turn north toward Hartford? Can't those tracks just be rebuilt? I'm just surprised that nothing has been done for 10 years and this isn't even a rail project.
  5. I've wanted to see something done with that property for along time. Either remake the Clarion into a nice hotel or blow it up and start all over again with some other type of building. Now is the time for the city to act. Time to seize the hotel.
  6. I'm glad to see the Griffin Line being reconsidered too. I remember hearing about it while I went to school at UConn. Dust off those 11-year old light rail plans and get some electric- or diesel-powered light rail trains running on the Griffin Line. I also believe ConnDOT should scrap those busway plans and run light rail from Hartford to New Britain. It's only nine miles, definitely doable as light rail. If they go all the way to Waterbury, then maybe go with commuter rail, although New Jersey Transit runs diesel light rail from Trenton to Camden, which is about the same distance as Hartford to Waterbury.
  7. Hi. I used to be very active on these forums, but for some reason stopped. Now I'm back again. I remember when they were discussing the Hartford/New Britain Busway back in the early 2000s. I thought it was a dumb idea then and I think it is now. It's a abandoned rail corridor, so it should be brought back as a rail line. Count me in as a supporter of a Hartford/Waterbury commuter rail service. I would like to see them use self-propelled railcars to provide the service.
  8. Yes, the state has been dragging its feet on the NH-Springfield commuter rail. This could and should have up and running many years ago.
  9. I totally agree. MARC trains should run on weekends and more frequently on the Penn Line in order to better serve BWI. And for way less money. Why throw billions of dollars away on a Metro extension there? This would be a Metro extension that would only benefit DC and its suburbs and not Baltimore.
  10. Portland does have light rail, the MAX lines. These use large, articulated light-rail vehicles. I believe they can reach up to 55 mph. They run in wide center street medians and private right-of-way outside of downtown. But there is also the Portland Streetcar. This is a smaller line that runs primarily in the northwest part of downtown Portland and almost entirely on city streets. They have smaller railcars (66' long, which is about 2/3 the length of a MAX car) which can not go as fast as a MAX train can. This could be the model for a Nashville streetcar. I consider MAX (and other recently-built light-rail systems) to be modern-day interurbans, becaue the rail cars are large (like the old interurban cars were) and many of them utilize private right-of-ways as the old interurbans did. Streetcars used private right-of-ways too, but generally not to the extent of interurbans. .
  11. I've been reading about the Music City Star line to Lebanon. I hope it's a success so the other lines proposed in the system also get built. But once commuters get downtown, they might need to transfer to another vehicle to continue their trips. I think LRT should also be given a good look for Nashville. Granted, there are concerns that LRT is expensive (though a heavy-rail New York-style subway would cost much more). So I was thinking that maybe Nashville could start by doing a streetcar line from the Riverfront to Vanderbilt. It could use historic cars like in Memphis or Charlotte or modern ones like in Portland. Either way, it would be less money in the beginning and the streetcar line could serve as a foundation for a light rail system.
  12. Defintely force the Moonies out of there. I'd still like to see another TV station move down there once Channel 3 leaves, maybe NBC 30 could move down there as part of a mixed- use facility.
  13. I'd go with GADOT on the width of the transit corridor. It should have room for at least two tracks. Having only one track will produce limited transit benefits. Plus, Amtrak needs to be run to the MMPT. Amtrak trains should stop downtown to make them a more useful option for getting to Atlanta.
  14. I really like the bottom photo. I'm going to take a look at the rest of your photos.
  15. The Westin kind of looks like a big silver cigar.
  16. I hope they get going on the streetcar soon. Glad to hear that the Mayor is supporting it too. I hope they can get private funding for the route to speed up construction on it.
  17. Yes, I agree that Hartford has a nice skyline, one that gives the first-time visitor the perception that the City of Hartford is a place of significant size and importance.
  18. Saw Hartford 21 from my Greyhound bus again this past Sunday on the way back up to Boston. I was glad to see the steel skeleton had goten even higher than before. I'm glad to see that the building is progressing well.
  19. Thanks for the welcome, SOCOM, although actually I'm not a Bostonian. I'm a native New Yorker. I'm up here because I attended graduate school at Suffolk for the past two years. Now that I'm finished with graduate school, I'm looking to leave Boston because it is just too expensive to live here and the job market isn't all that good. I've always had a special place for Hartford because it is the closest large city to UConn and I feel that the university should be well-connected to the city. I also felt the Adriaen's Landing plans were a way for Hartford to revitalize itself and fill that big gap between NYC and Boston. Clearly that won't happen over night, but if the people and the government remain focused and keep their eyes on the prize, it can happen. As for Bostonians not having anything nice to say about Hartford, truth is - they don't seem to have anything nice to say about any city other than Boston
  20. Yes, we should get back to discussing how Hartford 21 is a positive part of how Hartford is working to improve its downtown. That's what matters. Let's not have a rehash of the Hartford vs. Providence thread.
  21. Hi. I'm Mike D. I haven't posted on here in quite a while. I've been busy with my graduate school courses and sending out resumes for jobs. When I first started posting here, the Hartford section was really quiet and the most active threads in the Northeast section of UP were Providence and Norfolk/Hampton Roads, VA. I posted a lot on both of those threads because I was very interested in all the good things that are happening in Providence and Norfolk and they are on the list of places I am considering moving to (I currently live in Boston). I'm glad to see the Hartford section has come alive in the past few months. Hartford is also an area that I like very much and would consider living in. I attended UConn from 1998 to 2001. Around that time, the Adriaen's Landing projects and the possible relocation of the Patriots were the biggest things in the news. I felt that Hartford should be more than what it was in 1998, that it should be a city that can hold its own and not be completely eclipsed by NYC and Boston, because it's halfway between both of them. Between NYC and Washington, DC, there's Philadelphia, which certainly holds its own economically and socially without being completely overshadowed by both of them. Then there's Baltimore. While near DC, it does have an economic and cultual base of its own. Both are large cities of over 600,000 with sizable surrounding metro areas. I believe Hartford, as well as Providence, should be able to play the same roles north of NYC that Philly and Bmore play south of it. I'm not saying Hartford has to gain 1.5 million people and be exactly like Philly, but it should be a large, attractive, economically and culturally strong urban area that plugs the big gap between Boston and NYC, the way Philly does between NYC and DC. With the upcoming residence towers, the Convention Center and the new Science Center, Hartford is moving in the right direction.
  22. Hartford 21 is a big step in the right direction for the city. In order to have a 24-hour downtown, you gotta have places for people to live and things for them to do outside of Monday-Friday 9-5. The tower looks like it's coming along great.
  23. Mike D

    Norfolk Pictures

    All this chat about all the development that's happening in Norfolk is making me want to go down there and check it out.
  24. I group the NHL and AFL together. Getting an NHL team is like getting an AFL team, nothing special - and I don't think hockey is that popular enough in HR that an NHL team would do well. I still think NBA is the best way for Norfolk to go. They take chances on smaller or up-and-coming markets (Orlando, San Antonio, Memphis, Portland, Salt Lake City and Sacramento). As long as Norfolk can get a suitable arena.
  25. For Jacksonville, yes, the Jags and Super Bowl 39 have created more buzz about the city. But Memphis? Memphis was well known for blues, ribs and Elvis - long before the Grizzlies moved there from Vancouver. But I do agree that a sports team might help create more buzz about Norfolk. I also agree Norfolk's best chance of landing a pro sports team is with the NBA. The NFL wants to get back into LA and MLB doesn't seem to like taking chances markets unless another team is already there. However, I think that before the City tries to lure a pro sports team to Norfolk, it has to establish itself some more and become better known for the things it already has. I think Hoobo makes a great point that HR has to market its strengths to make the area become better known. A pro sports team is a great asset, but if Norfolk wants to get one, the City has to be able to convince the team owner(s) why Norfolk is the best place for them to be.
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