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cloudship last won the day on October 16 2011

cloudship had the most liked content!

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About cloudship

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  1. Am I evil when I say "And this is a problem"? I am not trying to say retirees are bad, or that they dont contribute or that we dont want them. I just would like to see a focus on a more diverse population structure than the elderly and young families.
  2. It's not just class size. It's school size, and that is something I think that a lot of states and people, not just Florida, miss. The reality is that a student's journey through college is about much more than classes. Just as some people love living in the big city and some want to live in a small town, so some students want to go to a huge college, and some want to go to a real small one. And some also want to go to one in between. Full Sail definitely fits the bill, I think there is rome for more. And perhaps something less "comercialized". It's not something you can build right away, either - it takes some time to develop. FPU really emphasizes what a bad idea it really was to kill the HSR link. I am perhaps being a bit of an optimist here, but maybe this will be enough to drive a rail project connecting USF, FPU, and UCF. One thing, I was reading up a little bit on FPU, and seeing exactly what and how that came to be, I would be very careful about setting my expectations too high. Once again this is a case of the state thinking people are produce and can just be relocated at will, and are just a certain quanmtity of the same thing. This move and break really will reverberate through the student and faculy population. That could be something quite disaterous to both enrollment and academics.
  3. Ah education. A subject after my own heart. An observation from someone who works for a college in New England, I am amused how Florida seems to have this Wal-mart one-size-fits-all mentality towards education. The answer isnt one or the other - it's both - and more. There is a place for a large Gen-ed university in the area like UCF. There are, believe it or not, students who do better in arena classrooms with lots of nightlife to keep them entertained. But there is also room for smaller more specialized colleges. FPU sounds like one of them - focused, mission driven, STEM based. While Valencia does, I believe, an excellent job, it is a huge school. The focus on student performance gets lost - not just in class size, but by faculty and administrators, who loose touch with the college culture. Full Sail, although a bit commercial for my tastes, is a great example of a small forward-looking college. IT focuses on key programs, and does them well. It is a target school for those looking for a quality education. You can't address education like you do groceries. Students are going to pick the school they want to go to - they don't just go to "any school". So just making multiple campuses does not really fix that problem. What you need to do is focus your educational institutions. Let UCF be the big guy - arena classes, frat parties, and football teams. But also provide specialized institutions. Orlando could use a good smaller Arts school - something more urban focused and individual. And perhaps towards the coast, a smaller business and liberal arts school for those students not ready for a big impersonal college.
  4. I am still convinced that at this stage the primary goal is maximizing profits from their existing infrastructure. This may be a good thing as they are not inherently trying to create the most successful mass transit project, they dont need to maximize ridership just yet. That means they can cover the costs of getting the lie up and running, and then let expansion only have to worry about paying for itself. There is room in the future to grow - you can always add stations. For instance it might not make sense right now to stop at Canaveral so you dont compete with Disney's cruise busses - add that once th line gets built. I woud think they would want to add the convention center, though, as that is far more likely a destination for Miamians that Orlando airport. SOM is good at this stuff and will help them figure out the best placement of their stations. The big question now is how much resistance Scott and his interests will put up. On one hand this will create a fight over roadway projects and associated insutries, as well as shipping and freight. On the other hand, this maximizes profits for a communications infrastructure those industries really need. How much are they wiling to risk biting the hand that feeds them?
  5. Why would someone want a monthly pass to the airpor? Other than a few airport workers, I dont see this being a the type of connector someone would need monthly pass for. Even I dont fly THAT much! The article said 5 trains a day at 10 minute intervals? Is that 5 trains an hour, or 5 trains a day with 10 minute trips? I am a bit concerned, well, very concerned, about a high elevated track, especially electrified. This is an area of thunderstorms, and elevated tracks are not ideal. But I am glad they are thinking about interconnectivity. They really should think about connecting with the Miami line if that is not going to go to the convention center. I am still concerned about the high ticket price, though.
  6. I had my doubts on this one, because without a stop at the convention center and attractions area I could not see there being enough traffic to justify the cost. But I dug a little deeper and got what this is really about, and it is an interesting idea that might help a lot of other projects get going as well. FECI's real business is land. Land for utilities and rights of way, as well as development and development projects. The train is not the primary business here - the train is there to make maximum use of the rights of way they already have for utilities. It's a great comix, is efficient, and boosts the train. Even better - there is now an addition incentive, private even, to getting a connection to Tampa!
  7. Ok, I can see the logic in that. But without that key attractions area stop, and preferably the convention center, you are not going ot have the ridership levels that you need. Not enough people are going to want to use the train for that route.
  8. I want to throw up a link to the that happened a few weeks ago. There is a reason I am doing this. We are talking here about a creative village, but we are talking in terms of big buildings, skyscrapers, media, high-tech, corporate customers. That isn't really the creative spark. This is the creative spark - small scale, independent, reuse, social, and dynamic. Building a "village" isn't going to work by putting up a bunch of office buildings, no matter how much they look like they belon in the flat iron district. To be really creative, they should have found a way to reuse the arena - tearing it down is pretty much antithetical to the idea of a creative environment. That should have been the spark right there. Now, this does not necessarily work for the city that is looking for quick returns on taxes, which is why I dont think the city would ever do anything like this, and why I dont think they will succeed. It doesn't bring in immediate big corporations. But it does bring in those people who start businesses, who are looking to create and grow into new corporations. Thus the creative city is not the resource of funding itself, but rather the engine which makes those resources develop. Perhaps the true creative village just needs to find a new place to come into being.
  9. The problem with plazas is that they attract a certain kind of business - either chains or businesses that want to be a chain. They don't really attract anything new, nor do the owners really want anything to radically different. Those businesses, and those owners, usually put a premium on automotive traffic to cast the widest net. The upshot of all that is that there is nothing really to make this project any more substantial or interesting than the next big plaza. Yes there is an aesthetical quality to buildings closer to the street, but that does not translate into more "life". To make the area really become more lively, and thus draw that kind fo street atmosphere, you need socialization places - something to draw people out of their cars and make them walk around. A good Saturday/Wednesday market could do wonders, as would a decent safe gathering place where the tourists could hang out. Yeah, that means drawing more tourists to the area, but more tourists bring more business, which allows smaller local businesses to survive.
  10. Maybe the Turkey Sand, which... Anyways, I think they really could do a lot with this area, but they really need to start with the road and pedestrian access. It's like having a superhighway through a pedestrian mall. They need more traffic control to allow more people to walk around. I am not sure that would happen that well, though - the area is more very well designed commercailk plazas than true organic development. If they want to go that approach, I think they could also focus on the waterfront behind Publix, as well as developing that area behind where Pepsi is located as a kind of "town center".
  11. While the city is trying to leverage the "Creative Village" brand as marketing tool for more development, the true creative environment in Orlando keeps poking its head up. Unfortunately I cant make it down there for this, but hope some of you get to go - this is what "creative" is about.
  12. :sigh: I think what fustrates me is how close this could come to being successful. Maglev low speed rail already exists, so the technoogy isn't far fetched. It's just that AMT seems unable to bring a product to market. And the financial structure could work. If he wasn't so starry eyed that he bought into a lot of the shady funding and political promises he is made. The route is ideal, but not with the kind of pricing model that skeptical accounts use and he blindly accepts. If they could get some more guaranteed funding it would be great. The values of the experience gained alone would easilly cover the construction cost, it's the land which costs so much. Japan already has mag lev systems in place now. The ridership numbers could be fantastic, again IF it is priced right. But $15 a trip? No, this is Orlando. You can get weekend car rental rates that cheap. And it is too short a ride. You might be able to get $5 one way. Might. There could be some serious vaction trafficat a lower price, too, but no family will spend $0 or more just to get between the mall and the airport. And what will end up happening in this case? It will be shot down as "proof" that rapid transit won't work. :sigh:
  13. If the train 3ere to expand westward, I would definitely see logic in an airport stop. But headed to Miami, I dont think there is as much. There is some, as pointed out, between the airport and the coast, but by and large the southern Florida area is already well served airport-wise. I think there is a more logical connection between the Miami Airport and Miami and Ft Lauderdale areas and the Attractions area, and would expect a station closer to there. Simple bus transfers would work between the airport and the train.
  14. I guess I am missing something here. I suppose with enough money you could find a way to float an ice rink on Lake Eola, but not sure how that is much different than building an ice rink on dry land? I could see if you were trying to create something like the canals in Holland or something, but just a skating rink? They have done skating rinks in the area before. i just don't tend to find them the same as skating up north - there is something about the weather that makes a big difference. So not sure there wuld be enough interest in something like this.
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