rookzie

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rookzie last won the day on May 19 2016

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About rookzie

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    Burg
  • Birthday 09/11/1951

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    Nashville, TN
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  1. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    [from WKRN.com] http://www.wkrn.com/news/political-news/diane-black-says-she-has-plan-to-improve-nashvilles-traffic-problems/1169506902 SMH [or rather, SMDH]. "Mother" knows best!.
  2. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    That "we aren't there yet just might be the case, if not actually, in consideration of the comparative nightmare gridlock in otherbut larger cities. But therein lies most of the sentiment toward being reactive rather than proactive, unlike what actions some other cities undertook during the 1980s and '90s (and even much more recently) ─ locales that were then still mid-sized. While they might not have actually built that early, indeed they DID make some tangible progress toward coherent preparation, in some instances by integrating future transit provisions within the roadway infrastructure, rather than to comeback and attempt to impose one on the other.
  3. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Imagine the ramifications and repercussions of eliminating NY Penn (actually at the Penn Sta. subway at 34th St.), after a Nov. 2015 triple shooting and murder. That effectively would end all passenger rail service east of Chicago, except for a few non-NY Intercity trains to GCT (Grand Central Terminal) and to WUS (Washington Union Sta.), and to Buffalo, not to mention the network of subway and multi-state commuter runs associated with NYPenn. It wasn't the first and it won't be the last. Not happenin'...
  4. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    For over 15 years, I have envisioned just that for Nashville, a starter circulator in the near-urban core, particularly to help revive the decimated Upper Jefferson Street corridor. The recent elimination of the MTA Nº29 Jefferson bus route and its replacement by extending the Nº60 Blue Circuit Free-Ride to cover that most same route, and ending at around 33rd Avenue North and John Merritt Blvd., at the former TSU Keene Gymnasium (currently part of the Floyd-Payne Campus Center), comes mind for such a conversion. This had been the path of the former car-line route, during the streetcar operation by TEPCO (Tennessee Electric Power Company) until the removal of streetcars altogether in 1941. Some of the old tracks had remained beneath the pavement along Jefferson, as far as 27th Ave. as lately as 2010, although recent utility improvements may have finally displaced those vestiges. It's not a route of any real distance, compared to other core thoroughfares, since Jefferson - John Merritt was reduced to a stub during the 1980s, when TSU was allowed to close off John Merritt Blvd, which formerly had been all Centennial Blvd from 28th Ave westward. The Nº60 is a short route, quite amenable to being transformed into a streetcar line, even if it means adding an alternate set of tracks between 5th Ave. and 8th Ave (Rosa Parks Blvd), which being free for all including those who need it most along the TSU-Meharry-Fisk-corridor, along with downtown riders as tourists and as a shuttle for the Music City Star, it has much more potential as an attraction for the State Bicentennial Mall and its growing list of attractions currently undergoing development, not to mention as a shuttle for the First Tennessee Ball Park. Barricading of traffic along 5th Ave. during game time could permit streetcar traffic only during those times. Frequency could be maintained as current 15-20 minute head-ways or even shorter. Streetcars as circulators are not built for speed, but rather for frequency, just as the SF Muni "Market and Wharves" F-Line and NOLA's NORTA St. Streetcar system, expanded during the late 1990s and again during the mid-late 2000s. Funding this much shorter start-up it would be tenable by budget, but if I'm not mistaken, I believe I recall observing that TDOT had assisted in funding some of Memphis' MATA original Main Street start-up in the early 1990s long before it was expanded with its Riverfront Loop and Madison Ave. Lines. I believe the MATA cars are all non-air-conditioned, including that replica double-truck Birney car shown in Jmtunafish's post above. While most of MATA's cars are refurbished and modified vintage streetcars (e.g. Porto, Melbourne), the firm "Gomaco" has manufactured those Birney replicas for Little Rock's Metro Streetcar, Charlotte's CATS South End District, and for Tampa' TECO (TECO's and perhaps others are air-conditioned). I'd almost bet that bodies would be clinging to a Nashville MTA Nº 60 streetcar like barnacles clinging to a ship hull. They don't need to be any sleek, modern double-articulated vehicles costing some 4 times the amount each of a replica vintage car. And yes, the tracks can't be just slapped down, as the system would need planning just as was necessary with that of MATA.
  5. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    ...And in some cases, they've done a piss-poor job of even that. Where I frequent Belmont Blvd. between Woodmont Blvd. at the north and then southward toward Lipscomb Univ., during the previous two calendar decades, a sidewalk was added on the west side of Belmont from Woodmont and south to Graybar Ln., a distance of about 2 city blocks. It was constructed without any storm drains along its extent, and run-off from the south side of Woodmont drains via open roadside ditches and culverts downhill from Benham Rd to the SW corner of the intersection with Belmont, where the problematic Belmont sidewalk begins ─ a draining distance of about 4 tenths of a mile (5 blocks) . All that drainage is above grade of the approached sidewalk, with the result that the sidewalk acts as a levy and deflects all that runoff directly onto the surface of Belmont, southward. During the cold seasons this has created an ice hazard along that 2-block stretch of Belmont, as that water typically flows along and covers the entire southbound lane of Belmont, in part because of the existing grading of the pavement slightly sloping from curbside and because of the absence of drains. This has resulted in a countless number of spin-outs, a condition of which Pubic Works has been made aware of more than once during the previous 10 years, and for which the short-term solution work-around has been only to dispatch a salt truck spreader on call demand. Run-off might drain and foul the Belmont pavement for as long as a day following the end of any falling precipitation. While this issue may appear insignificant compared to the thousands of other priorities, it nonetheless exemplifies the oversight disconnect with managing interrelated elements of infrastructure improvements, piece-meal. A sidewalk of even that proportion never should have been approved and constructed, without first handling the conveyance of all that run-off. Basically a solution to one issue has resulted in unending and unintended consequences with the creation of another. To have left the pre-existing daylight roadside ditches along Belmont would have eliminated this ongoing hazard.
  6. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Right, since we all tasted front-row-seat drama, during the Dean administration with how the State pulled rank on State-*maintained highways ─ primarily US designated routes, although much of Gallatin Pike and all of Main St. has had that designation re-routed via Ellington Pkwy. Generally, all the BRT dedicated lines likely would traverse these State arteries. Again it's going to be a steeply uphill battle for buy-in, even for that ─ maybe even a straight-up vertical climb (if not a "vertical stall"). Right now, though, I don't foresee even close to a consensus on even BRT, the effective dedicated type with busways only, or even with Queue jumps and mixed-flow lanes, just as with Seattle's' King County Metro "Madison Street BRT", which still utilizes some dedicated-lane travel. The Seattle example is overhead electric, but could the principle could be applied to any propulsion mode. But I say allow the Cold take its course along with the Harsh Medicine, and let the opponents of the last failed proposal have their hands in BRT before it gets batted down. We can forget about so-called "BRT-lite" Skip-stop, as a solution pill. I know first-hand by riding the MTA Nº50 on Charlotte at 5:00PM.
  7. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I think the MCS thing is dead in the water, unless some additional corridor other than the proposed NW corridor (to Clarksville) can be prioritized, although it would be a very costly one, even without the RTA portion beyond the county corporation limits. It seemed that the failed plan's proposed LRT (overhead electric) NW link to Ed Temple Blvd eventually would have been expanded into some form of DMU (diesel multiple unit) to serve the pre-proposed NW Corridor to Montgomery Cnty. Any revised comprehensive county-wide proposal, in this case a Metro, always would need to include sizable coverage scope in areas more transit-dependent, including but not limited to North Nashville, but primarily the urban core. Thing is, it would be all or nothing, in terms of LRT, because the work centers often tend to be areas which would be served by corridors other than the ones of residence. So again, LRT likely would need elimination altogether, for a sizable change of buy-in consensus. _____________________________________ In any case, it's a catch-22. Long ago I posted a brief comment that previously defeated Houston LRT proposals were finally followed with a successful 1998 passing, resulting in commenced construction in 2001, of a 7.5-mile start-up segment, when the Houston Metro (transit) board (some members of which are appointed by mayors of member regional cities) voted to build that city's Main Street Line, in spite of Congressman Tom Delay’s killing federal funds for it. For the next 9+ years, back-and-forth bickering and civic fighting over route alignments and threats again, this time by U.S. Congressman John Culberson (R-TX), to cut Federal funding led to the critical risk of endangering that district's relationship with the FTA, effectively withholding Federal Funding for the start-up development. The transit agency board had to pare down the ambitious plan to a single rail start-up, in order to set the wheels rolling on any construction. Then in 2003 Houston voters passed a massive referendum proposal based on the then-MPO policy of transit for the next 20 years, but that 2003 referendum ended up effectively as a truce rather than a voter consensus, with marginal regional political leadership in agreement barely sufficient to get it passed. Such a tenuous coalition, which at best can mobilize voters but not funds, allowed the "dam to become imminently breached" and the transit efforts to become drenched by well organized and well funded anti-transit forces. Political leaders historically have tended to view transit as a liability, while they seem to much more readily reach regional agreement on roadway improvements. Until 2011, Houston Metro basically had to juggle, without Federal funding, pre-existing proportions of the local tax allocation to slowly fund its long promised network, an initiative which unsurprisingly underwent a sizable setback during the recession of 2008. Likewise of no revelation, the 2012 referendum represented a repeated failure to garner the kind of consensus instrumental in boosting the rate of transit transportation project implementation in Houston, which is not consolidated with containing Harris Cnty. It must be noted that in 2003, Houston proper, which had been in position to apportion its resources for transit without the direct help of other jurisdictions within Harris Cnty, also had been in a much better standalone position to scrape and proceed from a start, than has Metro Nashville and Davidson Cnty, in part due to Houston's much higher population at the time of initial start-up construction in 2001, in time for the initial opening of its short Main Street line in 2004. In 2009 under the same financial constraints, without Federal funding, Houston was able to forge forward and commence expansion, by incremental extension and start-up of two of its then-planned 4 routes. Overall, Tennessee's combined state/municipal tax system captures a greater share of income from low- and middle-income people than from the wealthy, and this alone perhaps provided that coup de grâce to bludgeon to death the Metro Nashville Transit proposal by its contingency for funding. Metro Nashville could stand to learn immensely from history of consortial arrangements and partnerships of other agencies and from those districts which have "been there and done that" in the relatively recent past, just as with a die-hard automobile-centric Houston.
  8. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    No point in getting heated up with aspersions with this highly divisive topic, as if it were about the 2016 Presidential election. We just need to accept it as business as usual and to move on. Spend the proposed funding for sidewalks, skywalks, and bridges ─ maybe throw in a few extra pedestrian alleys from those cul-de-sacs and make 'em wide enough for manual and powered wheel-chairs, although there's no telling whether or not their use even could be encouraged. Stick on a few more buses for downtowners to get to and from the airport. I long ago had surmised overwhelming sentiment against this plan, and I also have little faith in any future referendum passing of measure that would propose a watered-down non-rail option. As far as the tunnel was concerned, I certainly don't see any rail option as tenable for the narrow streets of the CBD, unless something is proposed like that of Portland's Tri-Met MAX, which does seem to share the grid in one-way directional mixed traffic, before assuming dedicated RoW away from the CBD. Thing is, even that requires a degree of tunneling and divided-highway median use away from the CBD, unless CSX decides to sacrifice some of its proposed rail routes considered for sale (which is highly unlikely with a recent turnover of administration). There just is not a sufficient number of little-used, redundant, or abandoned railroad property in this region to constitute any such advantage, as opposed to what Chattanooga has to offer. I don't believe that even naysayer voters of this election really want to fund any equivalently costly plan of buses and busways, much less intend to ride them, being as car-centric as the region is as a whole ─ not in the foreseeable anyway.
  9. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    late 60s - 67 in September.
  10. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Even my 87-yr-old mom voted Yes, and against that Black-grain, as it were. From the very start I always had doubt that it would pass by close count if at all ─ more of a discrete and sizably lop-sided count against it. I'm now about resigned to just allow the matter to "lapse" and to allow (human) nature to take its toll, since I'm not expected to be around much longer anyway, much less to be able to actually utilize any approved and funded high-capacity conveyances, once opened for service.
  11. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I think I hear the reverb "Kwoir". Mock my words... As expected, "they" even reared their heads in Milwaukee and OKC, both of which already have something less comprehensive in planning or construction.
  12. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Ha!.. With my rotten-ass memory, I'd say you must be "up there", if that were the case... Seriously, it's no secret ─ I'm 66, 67 in September. I just tend to have been able to recall certain trivia with details and clarity, perhaps in the same manner that some with dementia can seem "normal" for a minute.
  13. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I "infer" from the context that you're old then.... [I didn't say ancient like me, but I gave the "benefit" of the doubt...ツ]
  14. rookzie

    The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Just don't be caught by surprise, if the Koch Bro's pull a big sink-hole in the path of the Plan. We all should have our seismic probes on the ground for that one ─ Yay or Nay.
  15. rookzie

    IKEA to Nashville

    Tennessee seems to have two DDIs to date ─ one near Alcoa-Maryville and another near Sevierville. Unfortunately the Web site (https://divergingdiamond.com/) is poorly navigable by mouse drag, if one is using a PC ─ at least on one of my devices. I had to use the arrow- and the +/- keys to pan and zoom. (smartphone browser might have better navigability, but I have not tried). An additional one at Hickory Hollow Pkwy should really become a "proving ground" for that design. https://divergingdiamond.com/item/i-40-sr-66/ https://divergingdiamond.com/item/us-129-middlesettlements-road/ At least two existing (older) single-point urban interchange (SPUI) sites can be found mid-state.