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12Mouth last won the day on April 2 2014

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About 12Mouth

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  1. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Generally, transit does not significantly reduce congestion. It provides an alternative. Even if you pull cars off of the road, they will likely be replaced by other cars.
  2. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I still think this will lose big, but I very much hope that I am dead wrong and that you are all right!
  3. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I also think that it is just generally much easier to oppose something than to support it. To be against something allows you to propose completely unattainable alternatives that are not bound by reality. And if you propose 10 fake alternatives, everyone can choose one that they like and embrace it just enough to push them to a no vote on the current proposal. The anti-transit team was able to bring together numerous constituencies who are not bound by logic: the anti-growth crowd, the anti- any new tax for anything crowd, the anti-change crowd, the affordable housing crowd, etc. At the end of the day, the main problem here is that most people want to keep driving as a single occupant of a car wherever and whenever they want and never hit traffic. People want a transit plan that sounds like a plan that other people will use, that will get other people off of the road and out of their way without causing them too much money or inconvenience. The single best argument that is being made against this is around autonomous transport and futurism. I think that if this plan was written more broadly and boldly to explicitly allow for updates and left room for public/private partnerships, rideshare integration, and shared use of dedicated lanes, it may have had a shot.
  4. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I was talking to a very intelligent friend this weekend, who is usually well-informed, and he was going on about how great the Swope plan is. I informed him of the insanity, as well as the fact that local money wouldn't be able to pay for the vast majority of his plan, and there is no way in hell that the state would fund that. Also, I'm sure Icahn would just hand us PSC metals, too. In the process, I also happened upon Swope's website, which advocates for a Nashville-area light rail system (and also appears to show some confusion between light and heavy rail in the process): http://www.swopefornashville.com/issues.html (spoiler alert - just tell CSX to give us their rail lines). Also, I really see no world in which this plan passes. I hope I'm wrong, but I don't think it will even be close.
  5. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I actually think it is appropriate here. Look, the Koch brothers have made many important civic contributions and seem to be quite generous people. However, it seems fair to me to know who is funding our anti-tranist plan: oil money and car dealers (or a car dealer). And I don’t fault them for being against it...this is in their own financial interest. But I don’t think this information should be out of bounds.
  6. White Bison Coffee. https://www.nashvillepost.com/business/food-business/article/20979921/white-bison-coffee-shop-eyed-for-12south
  7. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    This is a great argument, provided the plan is indeed this flexible. I love that trackless train article - I remember sending it to a bunch of people when it came out. Provided the technology is reliable, those would be fantastic. Interestingly enough, I think that if the mayor's office actively advertised the hypothetical potential for additional vehicles to use these lanes, the project could have even more support. But perhaps they don't even want to mention that existing lanes for cars could be possibly be removed. I also think that the amp failed for many reasons, and not simply because people are opposed to BRT (particularly if you never call it BRT and package it correctly). They literally ran their first attempt at a modern public transit line directly into the only metro Nashville house district held by a republican.
  8. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    This is my understanding, as well, but this is like going after Amazon in the early 2000's for not being profitable. They were losing money to gain market share. Uber is putting their money into three places right now: paying drivers, owning market share/global expansion, and research and development. The model, particularly without drivers, is not inherently flawed. Individual cab drivers have been profitable for a long time and the market certainly thinks that Uber will make a lot of money in the future. We are currently under-paying for service with a driver, but the driver is taking in 70% of the profits from each ride. I imagine that the cost per mile of a self driving ride could be under $1/mile for a single rider. With 10-12 people in a vehicle, it would be significantly less. And this is not even accounting for all of the in-ride purchases that we will likely see (i.e. Starbucks). Even if there is only a 50% chance that this sort of future is realized (although I suspect that the likelihood is much higher), if we are spending 9 billion dollars on a 30-year transit plan, would it not make sense to at least have a plan that would allow for this and not keep stating that rideshares are only for first mile/last mile service?
  9. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Sure - I get that, but there are dozens of companies preparing to attack (or actively attacking) this space right now, and presumably we would not need to choose one to partner with. And like I said, if things don't pan out, or take longer, we still have dedicated lane BRT in operation. I guess I get this? But alternatively, non fixed-route transit can accommodate transit wherever development is already happening. Plus, would the separated lane BRT not accomplish both goals? I mean, presumably, if the BRT is working, it could keep running coexist with automated minibuses in those dedicated lanes, right? And theoretically cost much less. But not so with rail.
  10. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I don't think that individual driverless cars will solve anything (though they will bring certain efficiencies with parking and freeway travel). The question to me is really around low-medium capacity autonomous rideshare vs. fixed route transit (at least within the USD). It seems to me that Uber, Lyft, and a host of other companies will have the ability to prioritize travel for 10-15 passenger minibuses relatively soon. While widespread level 4 autonomous vehicle adoption will likely be 20 (if not 30) years away, I suspect that we will see rideshare fleets transition much sooner, and certainly before Nashville is finished building out the proposed lightrail network. When this does happen, the cost of a single trip should theoretically plummet. Uberpool for me is now under$5/ride with a driver and 0-1 other passengers. They should be able to get these prices well below the cost of public transit with 10 passengers and no driver (or possibly a subscription model). If it is cheaper for me to do this, and I have no transfer (so it is presumably faster or equivalent in time), I can't see myself (or possibly anyone) ever using public transit. The only advantage that public transit has at that point is if it can run in a dedicated lane or change traffic signals. So, rather than lay down a bunch of rail, I would ask why we are not putting down dedicated lane BRT everywhere right now that can run for the next 10-15 years (or however long this takes) that can be converted into exclusive lanes for autonomous rideshare pool vehicles. It seems to me that our options as a city are to fight a losing battle by creating fixed transit lines or build out infrastructure to facilitate a public-private partnership. Am I wrong here? I'm certain there are others on this board who know far more than I do about this. I'm also quite certain that this sort of mass mid-capacity transit becomes less viable when density reaches a certain point. But is Nashville going to reach that density point in the next 100-150 years? I really want to support this transit plan in my heart, but my head is having trouble getting there.
  11. That would be great, but I believe it is just a yoga studio going in. Because there were only yoga studios on two of the four corners of that intersection, so we clearly needed one on the third corner.
  12. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    I'm not so sure that the vast majority of people living in moderately to heavy densely populated areas will still own a car for the foreseeable future. All of the major players have made their subscription-based autonomous transportation intentions clear. If I can pay $2-300/month (I just made this up - I have no idea what their pricing intentions are, but assume that there will be partial subsidies from employers, advertisers, and in-ride purchases) to have a specific car that fits my needs at that moment pick me up and bring me where I need to go, I would totally do it. I don't need to worry about parking, I get the real estate in my garage back, etc. I think that we will be at or close to this point in 15 years, rendering car ownership as well as a traditional urban bus system useless. The only advantage that I can see to public transportation in the future is dedicated lanes to avoid traffic. But even in this case, would it not make more sense to make dedicated lanes for shared autonomous vanpools instead, which would presumably still pull some cars off of the road or at least give people an alternative (vanpools would be cheaper and avoid traffic). If we are concerned with moving around people who cannot pay for this service, I have to imagine that it will be cheaper to just pay for or significantly subsidize the trips of people below a certain income level than to run an entire bus system. I really think that we could come up with an interim dedicated lane BRT system (or this) and just convert it into an autonomous vanpool lane when the technology gets there.
  13. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    And if the transit is not sitting in the same congestion. So much of the success/failure of this plan is really going to be how "rapid" the rapid buses are. Signal priority will help some, but the engineering of the areas of dedicated lanes (which will no doubt cause political battles) and frequency of service will determine if people actually utilize this as a system. I fear that what we will really end up with after 15 years and 5.2 billion dollars are 3 beautiful light rail lines heading downtown and essentially the same mostly crappy underutilized bus system.
  14. The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread

    Yes - it was mostly the neighbors on both sides of West End outside of the 440 loop (and one unnamed car dealership owner inside of the loop). Hillsboro Village and 12South/Belmont would completely support transit, although I suspect Oak Hill would pitch a fit if they touched 8th Ave S. 12South/Belmont and the Gulch are clearly omissions, but they also don't really have a serious traffic problem right now. I can drive, rideshare, or ride my bike downtown from 12South at almost any time of day without hitting any traffic. This really seems like a commuter and airport transit plan geared towards heavy traffic areas and for those who have a destination of downtown. I suppose this makes sense right now? But I can't help but thinking that this will look so short-sided when it is completed in 2032. This seems like a transit plan that could have been completed in 2002. This is not bold - it is quite the opposite (apart from digging a giant tunnel through downtown). Won't anything that is not running in a completely dedicated lane lose the convenience battle to autonomous ride shares 100% of the time in 2032? I also just don't get the light rail piece at all. We are gaining nothing on the convenience front for so much more expense. Am I wrong here? Can someone talk me down and convince me that this is all a great idea?
  15. West End/Mid Town/Music Row/Vandy Projects

    The one to really pay attention to is FutureVU - https://www.vanderbilt.edu/futurevu/ Vanderbilt is undergoing a massive land use planning initiative - think campus greenways, much less surface parking, urban graduate/professional housing village, etc. This is all coming straight from Eric Kopstain's office and will have a major impact on Vanderbilt and Midtown in the coming years.