Jump to content

Richmond Region Transportation


wrldcoupe4

Recommended Posts

43 minutes ago, Brent114 said:

I wished they would paint the Pulse lanes already.  I seem to recall the city securing the money for that (some federal grant) 6-8 months ago. 

I'm wishing the same.  I've also been waiting for these accordian-buses :tw_grin: for some time now.  

I posted about this in an outside thread, but a few weekends ago I was on the Pulse on a Sunday and there was standing room only front-to-back.  I contrasted this with the Tide in Norfolk after spending a few days riding the line on a weekend trip.  The difference was REAL.  

It's such a stretch, but I hope rail in Richmond is not an afterthought.  

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites


1 hour ago, Richmonopoly said:

I'm wishing the same.  I've also been waiting for these accordian-buses :tw_grin: for some time now.  

I posted about this in an outside thread, but a few weekends ago I was on the Pulse on a Sunday and there was standing room only front-to-back.  I contrasted this with the Tide in Norfolk after spending a few days riding the line on a weekend trip.  The difference was REAL.  

It's such a stretch, but I hope rail in Richmond is not an afterthought.  

I fully agree, Richmonopoly! I hope it's still part of the equation and maybe at some point we see it.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

When it rains it pours -- GRTC cutting service because of a driver and mechanic shortage (pandemic-related). I'm not sure why I opened the Times-Dispatch today - two for two on developments that aren't good.

I hope and pray they can get this sorted out as quick as is reasonably possible. As things (hopefully) continue to improve with the pandemic, GRTC will get back to full strength.

https://richmond.com/news/local/grtc-directors-approve-bus-service-cuts-on-pulse-8-other-routes-and-suspend-advertising-program/article_f1676b93-f7d4-5df4-89c5-356e891c5baa.html#tracking-source=home-breaking

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

Not sure how this would play out from a standpoint of seriously DEVELOPING a good STRONG regional transit system (particularly increasing the number of BRT lines going forward and eventually shifting over to light rail/rapid streetcar) -- would these folks have any ability to marshal funds from the CVTA at all? I'm unclear on even what their role/agenda might be in the overall transportation segment of the city government other than being a different carve out for administeration.

From the RTD:

https://richmond.com/news/local/richmond-councilman-considering-legislation-to-create-local-transportation-department/article_cde6fca5-ffc9-5ec6-986e-3b698943011c.html?utm_source=richmond.com&utm_campaign=%2Fnewsletter-templates%2Flocal%2Fdaily-business&utm_medium=PostUp&utm_content=0ec7e032dd1e4ec101109fd5c9cd7c5c0a175c41

Edited by I miss RVA
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think if you were drawing lines on a map, the Hull street line makes the most sense by far. But, the road width is a major problem--if you want dedicated lanes, there will be single lanes of traffic going both ways. I get induced demand, but good luck selling that to voters and business owners who lose street-front parking.

The ideal road network is probably along Route 1 because it would be along a six lane road for its whole duration, so taking two lanes away should be an easier sell, but it isn't super densely-populated.

Hull street/midlothian turnpike probably makes more sense as a BRT and Route 1 probably makes more sense as light-rail since rail can spur development in a way buses can't.

The other interesting tidbit in here is that Pulse ridership was at 3700/weekday as of May 2021. It was averaging close to 7000 at launch, but it was expected to carry 3500/weekday when it was announced. The fact that it's still beating that figure after COVID and everything is pretty promising!

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

33 minutes ago, upzoningisgood said:

The other interesting tidbit in here is that Pulse ridership was at 3700/weekday as of May 2021. It was averaging close to 7000 at launch, but it was expected to carry 3500/weekday when it was announced. The fact that it's still beating that figure after COVID and everything is pretty promising!

Good info! 

BTW - even though I didn't highlight them, I 100% agree with all of your other points in your post. Spot on across the board. :tw_thumbsup:

Regarding the route: one thing that the city wants to do is to take it across the Manchester Bridge as opposed to the Lee Bridge. Why? In order to connect it to the transportation center that's to be part of the City Center area redevelopment. I believe they'd use Leigh Street as a short east-west access route to carry the BRT coming down either Brook Road or Chamberlayne from the Northside.  Conventional wisdom would argue that it is better to bring the north-south BRT line straight down Belvidere Street (which would give VCU a second station -- perhaps at or just south of Monroe Park) and create a more direct north-south path across the Lee Bridge to Cowardin Avenue and points south. BUT this route cuts out downtown completely - and doesn't fit in with the city's desire to link the two BRT lines in City Center -- and to include the GRTC transportation center in the route mix. All of which makes sense -- but it makes for a particularly odd route once it gets into Manchester. Hull Street is bloody narrow - and Semme Avenue -- certainly wide enough and a good "cut through" to get to Cowardin Avenue -- essentially cuts off more of the "core" portion of Manchester.

It's a bit of a quandary, to be sure.

Edited by I miss RVA
  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites


Re the Manchester Bridge, my understanding is a condition of the Richmond-Manchester merger was that there would always been a free pedestrian bridge linking the two. Assuming such a requirement is still enforceable, would the Potterfield Bridge suffice? In that event, the Pulse could run down the center without taking up any travel lanes.

Also, I’m curious about ridership per station. I seem to recall early reports saying Willow Lawn’s numbers dwarfed the others. That made sense given it’s the western terminus and given my experience (it’s within walking distance of my house). But I’m fascinated by the second VCU station idea. I’m not sure that makes sense from a design viewpoint, but I do believe the Pulse is popular with students.

At any rate, all of this is a long way off and I’m very skeptical how effective a N/S route would be within the downtown core because things are already very tight.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, DowntownCoruscant said:

At any rate, all of this is a long way off and I’m very skeptical how effective a N/S route would be within the downtown core because things are already very tight.

Solution - a tunnel and an underground transfer station for GRTC and Pulse!

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

the second I saw the headline on RT-D this morning I thought "let the guessing begin" on which route it will take.

Chamberlyane/Belvidere/Cowardin/Davis?

14th/Hull?

14th/Midlothian?

9th/Commerce?

9th/Hull?

Personally I think the long north/south route of Chamberylane down to Jeff Davis (or whatever they're calling it now) makes the most sense, with a spur from Main St Station over Mayo Bridge and down Midlothian.  I made a mock map of it somewhere here a few months ago.

 

Edited by 123fakestreet
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Manchester bridge is incredibly wide and doesn’t seem to see the amount of traffic it was designed for. Really, all you need is two lanes of traffic in each direction and that seems like it would do more than enough to suffice traffic demand there. I’m regards to hull street, I wouldn’t be surprised if the city has that part of the route on shared lanes, similar to the current segment between 14th and Fulton. Even though this would mean worse service than if dedicated lanes were installed, maybe it could be used as a phasing mechanism by the city to slowly introduce service and prove to business owners that having 4 lanes on hull in this section isn’t necessary to ensure smooth traffic flow.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites


3 minutes ago, 123fakestreet said:

My proposed routes. I keep getting an error when trying to paste the link. take the below address and paste it after google.com

 

/maps/d/u/0/edit?mid=15FE9aRK0aSbZC8B6VZTA-Fwh2LYyAmvI&usp=sharing

Not working for me at all.:dontknow:

Edited by eandslee
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=15FE9aRK0aSbZC8B6VZTA-Fwh2LYyAmvI&ll=37.530613907750016%2C-77.48225553687745&z=14

 

maybe pasting this after google.com works? the map showed when i first posted it months ago.

 

Either way, from the article looks like they are only looking at a southern end. Downton over Manchester Bridge, turning down Hull, then continuing down Hull, veering onto Midlothian, or turning down route 1.  When I took a look at possible routes Midlothian made way more sense given Hull is sparsely populated with single family homes, as opposed to existing density on Midlothian.  Midlothian also has way more growth potential for dense residential infill. Don't see them bulldozing homes along Hull to build apartments.  Route 1 could be done but I don't think it makes as much sense as Midlothian, don't think there's nearly as many people who live near it, just a lot of empty space and large factories and would be better for a 3rd standalone north/south BRT in the distant future.

 

 

Edited by 123fakestreet
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

27 minutes ago, 123fakestreet said:

/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=15FE9aRK0aSbZC8B6VZTA-Fwh2LYyAmvI&ll=37.530613907750016%2C-77.48225553687745&z=14

 

 

Yes, if you put "www.google.com" in front of that it works. 

However, if you try to copy and paste that link directly the entire text box flips out and locks up. I'm in IT and I've never seen this before, quite an usual bug.

 

Anyways, I'm shocked to see that the GRTC use is at 3,700 a week during covid. Honestly, I wouldn't come close to using a bus during covid so these numbers are wonderful to see. 

 

Belvidere (Lee bridge) route makes sense to me but it would cut out the entire eastern side of Belvidere which will be hot spots like Jackson Ward, Monroe Ward, City Center, and the downtown by default when the city is looking to reconnect it all together again including merging Manchester to the city. It really does make sense to have the Manchester bridge be the new big route, especially with the size.

Now, what does that mean for the "grass roots" funded movement to make Manchester bridge a bridge park? https://www.bridgeparkrva.com/ 

Hopefully it doesn't kill it because I love the idea... and to be honest, do the buses really need to have their own lane on a bridge? A merge could work just fine... to have two empty lanes at all times on the bridge just for buses seems unnecessary when we can connect the pedestrians and bikers to the urban city area so well with Manchester. That bridge moves quick and there is never traffic -buses can easily merge and go across quickly with cars! Manchester bridge makes sense to me.

Edited by ancientcarpenter
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Manchester Bridge via 8/9th does create a direct route to the current GRTC transfer "plaza."  I think any route for the first North/South line must run Hull Street between Commerce and Cowardin and then proceed down Midlothian to maximize connectivity of businesses and residents.  A future line can run Route 1, probably via Belvidere.  For the stretch with parking along Hull Street, I estimate around 200 spaces lost, easily replaced with a parking deck or two (equivalent to approximately four Carytown sized garages).

As far as crossing the Mayo Bridge, I can also see some great benefits.  First, note that the Mayo Bridge is likely seeing replacement so there is potential there.  Cutting the few on street parking spaces that already muck up traffic between the bridge and Commerce would not be terribly detrimental and dedicated BRT lanes may force traffic to slow down in that stretch (it gets pretty bad).  Having an overlapping route from VCU Medical Center to the VCU stop would greatly relieve what I witness as the most significant stretch of ridership, without adding more buses to the existing route that will be underutilized outside of that stretch.  Thinking 14th > Broad > Lombardy which allows for a new doorstop VUU station.

Very quick snapshot overlay:
 image.thumb.png.ddf0abf1b2ac0115d3c58a4f4cdd087c.png

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 minutes ago, Icetera said:

Manchester Bridge via 8/9th does create a direct route to the current GRTC transfer "plaza."  I think any route for the first North/South line must run Hull Street between Commerce and Cowardin and then proceed down Midlothian to maximize connectivity of businesses and residents. 

This. We can talk about what we want to see or what would be cool, but the only route that makes logical sense given what we know the city is trying to achieve is from the downtown transfer plaza, over the Manchester Bridge, turn onto hull, veer off down midlothian.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@IceteraI think this proposal makes a lot of sense. One of the positives of this proposal is that it would give the city an excuse to rezone along 14th street. The zoning there is very out of date.

There's an interesting choice to be made between sending the Pulse by VUU or Gilpin. I think Gilpin would probably use it more, but I don't have strong priors about whether college students or public housing residents would use transit more.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, upzoningisgood said:

There's an interesting choice to be made between sending the Pulse by VUU or Gilpin. I think Gilpin would probably use it more, but I don't have strong priors about whether college students or public housing residents would use transit more.

 

The good thing is that you don't need to consider today's Gilpin but more of tomorrow's Gilpin.

In my view, Gilpin is set to be demo'd completely after this "study" that the city got a grant for. There will be major new mixed income, retail, luxury, and density coming to Gilpin, including the Jackson Ward bridge park to Gilpin that in the Richmond 300 plan had a 6-8 story building on it with a park. It would make sense to run the bus to Gilpin and then turn it west toward Chamberlayne in the long term planning of things. All of this seems 5-10 years out anyways so who knows...

Edited by ancientcarpenter
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If Richmond wants to maximize development potential and mass transit, a Route 1 N-S corridor makes the most sense to me - most potential for infill residential density and connections to job centers in the south. Hull Street maybe secondary to tap redevelopment of Southside Plaza. I'd be curious to see a concept that successfully integrates BRT traffic with POVs along the stretch of hull between Commerce and the riverfront.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Route 1 (or 301) would be great.  It could connect the future Green City with downtown. 
 

Defense Supply —-> Green City  would be a great route.   Then extend the Broad Street line out to Reynold’s Crossing.   
 

And paint the lanes red already! That money was allocated at least a year ago. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.