Jump to content

The Transportation and Mass Transit Megathread


TopTenn

Recommended Posts

http://www.tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/ar...EWS02/607170343

A new article from the Tennessean today on some possible future sources of financing for the Music City Star and other rail projects. Most areas around the country utilize a dedicated revenue stream to rail projects. I think it would be smarter to just make rail expenses be a certain proportion of highway dollars spent, that way rail itself isn't villified for tax increases or otherwise and transit funding all comes from the same pot.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


1. East (Hermitage, Mt. Juliet and Lebanon) obviously

2. Southeast (Hickory Hollow, LaVergne, Smyrna and Murfreesboro) already planning

3. South (Brentwood, Cool Springs, Franklin and Columbia) - lots of demand

4. Northeast (Briley Parkway, Hendersonville and Gallatin) - also lots of demand. Probably earlier if it includes a stop at the airport

5. West (Belle Meade, Bellevue and Kingston Springs)

6. Northwest (Northern Cheatham County including Ashland City)

7. North (Robertson County including Springfield)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1. East (Hermitage, Mt. Juliet and Lebanon) obviously

2. Southeast (Hickory Hollow, LaVergne, Smyrna and Murfreesboro) already planning

3. South (Brentwood, Cool Springs, Franklin and Columbia) - lots of demand

4. Northeast (Briley Parkway, Hendersonville and Gallatin) - also lots of demand. Probably earlier if it includes a stop at the airport

5. West (Belle Meade, Bellevue and Kingston Springs)

6. Northwest (Northern Cheatham County including Ashland City)

7. North (Robertson County including Springfield)

Thanks for listing them, I was too lazy to do it :whistling: . I would guess (using your numbering system) that #2 would be the most likely because of MTSU and the sheer size of Murfreesboro. There's also a good chance of #4 getting fast-tracked. I would guess that #7 and #6 would be the lest likely, or at least the later ones to get lines.

Edited by franktown
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I think that the Murfreesboro line is already in planning. And it was close between 3 and 4. I really just put it in that order because of bias. :ph34r: And the last two, I think it will be a while before they get built, because there doesn't seem to be much demand, unless someone else proves me wrong.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am so surprised that Clarksville has never been mentioned in any light rail talks. We have a large contingent of Nashville commuters and it's only around 45 miles from downtown to downtown. I live in the Sango area of Clarksville and it's only around 30.

I can't think of any rail lines to Clarksville from Nashville, right now. The line through Ashland City has been converted to trails for a short section to the west, so that right-of-way may be irretreivable. The part of the line between AC and Nashville still has track, but is unusable with serious, expensive maintenance requirements.

If there is a line from Springfield, it may be a little too out of the way.

With all the capacity available on lightly traveled I-24, bus transit might be a more feasible option and I know there are privately owned buses who haul commuters to and from Nashville every day.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I actually went to a meeting of the Southeast Corridor Transit Allignment on tuesday just for curiosity. I thought I would share what I heard with you guys. They have cosidered several different route's, as well as an airport connection. Many modes were considered including BRT, LRT, Commuter and Heavy rail. Heavy rail and Light rail were unfeasible and so was an airport connection. The 3 options are as follows:

1. BRT on Murfreesboro Rd.- dedicated lanes- around 430 million.

2. Commuter rail on CSX- similar to east corrior- around 340 million.

3. BRT on I-24- dedicated lanes north of Briley Pkwy./ HOV south of Briley- around 280 million.

From what was said it seems that option 3 is most likely to be implemented(5 years at the earliest) I have mixed feelings about this. First and foremost, I think excluding the airport is the dumbest thing to do. Otherwise, they all have their pro's and con's.

With all the capacity available on lightly traveled I-24, bus transit might be a more feasible option and I know there are privately owned buses who haul commuters to and from Nashville every day.

With all respect, to call I-24 "lighty traveled" is not correct. Any given morning traffic is gridlocked as far south as Sam Ridley Pkwy and sometimes all the way to 840. That is why I am concerned about BRT on the HOV lanes south of Briley.

Also FYI the buses that run to Murfreesboro and back are operated by the RTA...a partner of the MTA. These buses work as part of the MTA but are much more comfortable(due to the longer trips). Cushy seats instead of the plastic one's.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think people would be more inclined to be on a train, than a bus. Especially if the bus is in the HOV lanes of the interstate where, it too could experience volume delays.

I couldn't agree more. I am pretty frustrated how low-key that "they" are making this project. This is a quick fix to an escalating problem. I would love for the average citizen to take transit seriously and establish a long-term system, instead of just thinking that it might just solve a 2 month fuel spike.

Mass transit SHOULD be an investment in our future, not just a bandage for our past.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Speaking of I-24, it is a shame that the northern area has only two lanes in between Nashville and Clarksville. It just doesn't make sense. Every morning when they do the traffic, the first backup is always at I-24 and Briley before the split. Unfortunately, I don't ever see them widening that area.

So much for ever developing the northwest side of town.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think people would be more inclined to be on a train, than a bus. Especially if the bus is in the HOV lanes of the interstate where, it too could experience volume delays.

I think that you're right about putting busses on the interstates themselves. Here in Chicago, Mayor Daley I made it a priority to get federal highway dollars to build CTA train lines down the medians of a lot of the interstates as they were being built, which was really forward thinking at the time. Sometimes the trains go whizzing by the cars stuck in gridlock a few yards away on the interstates. At least on the el, you can pretty much count on a commute to the airport in under an hour, but you're taking your chances on the Kennedy. And the 20 minutes on the train to Midway beats the heck out of the horrible commute down the interstate and then another mile or so down the street from there.

I really must say, I can't fathom why some kind of feasible transit to/from the airport isn't seriously pushed in Nashville. There actually is an MTA line that goes from downtown down Elm Hill Pike to the airport area, but the hours are ridiculous. Why not just convert that into an express bus that runs all the time if it would be too expensive or otherwise infeasible to build a train. Unless the cab drivers and the Grey Line bus operators are pushing against the transit option.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The part of the line between AC and Nashville still has track, but is unusable with serious, expensive maintenance requirements.

Actually, I think this has changed just within the past year or two. I saw them doing some major re-working on the tracks a year ago and I remember reading somewhere that they refurbished the tracks so trains could make runs to the cheatham county industrial site, which sits just accross the cheatham co. border. I don't know how often it is used now, but I do know that its status as an abandoned line has changed quite recently...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In a few weeks, with the opening of the commuter rail line to and from Lebanon, our fair city will have one of these thingies:

Thingie.jpg

The single line diagrammatic of a rail system. You see them in subway stations (Tubes, Metros, etc,) around the country and world.

Some are very complicated; New York

Others are not quite as complex; Atlanta

But, it's a start. A small step for transit, a giant leap for Nashville.

Now, I wonder what's the next step. Possibly, a line to Murfreesboro which is under study and definitely needed. However, I wonder if maybe a different line should be added next:

Thingie2.jpg

It seems to be a natural. Install a light rail line from Opryland to the airport with a transfer station on the Music City Star line. It gives access to and from downtown to both attractors. More trips would have to be scheduled on the MCS line during the day. And I think, both Gaylord and BNA would be supportive and willing to donate right-of-way to help make it happen. Perhaps they could help defray some of the costs. It might be cheaper than building extra parking at the airport.

Gaylord should like it as it ties in the Opryland Convention Center with the downtown attractions.

Anyway, just daydreaming on rainy Saturday afternoon. ;)

Edited by PHofKS
Link to comment
Share on other sites

PHofKS, I think that everything should connect through downtown as the central nexus. Maybe do a route from downtown to Opryland to the airport, but a light rail line could not connect to the commuter rail because there is just not enough frequency to then get people into downtown. IMO an airport route (we gotta give that 9 million an easy way into DT right Lexy! :thumbsup: ) is the most important to get people downtown in a fairly direct manner and then disperse them from there. Still, I appreciate the thought you have put into this, it is important to connect the airport (and probably Opryland too) as the next focus by a rail alternative that will have some dependable frequency.

Edited by frankliner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think people would be more inclined to be on a train, than a bus. Especially if the bus is in the HOV lanes of the interstate where, it too could experience volume delays.

I think most people would probably say to themselves, "If I'm going to be on the bus, I might as well just drive my car." Buses are just less attractive. I can see people getting out of their cars for a train, but it seems much less likely for the bus.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

PHofKS, I think that's a great idea... although if you look at where the current rail line goes, I think this would make sense (since we're dreaming anyway):

NashvilleRail.jpg

Add 3 more stops - Two Rivers, Opryland, and Airport. Add a 2nd set of tracks starting at Donelson, going all the way downtown... as well as 2 sets of tracks for the Opryland and Airport extensions. Then, the portion between Donelson and the Riverfront would be highly traveled, and basically could be light rail, rather than commuter rail. Downtown would still be the nexus (eventually)... you would just have extensions from the main route going to Opryland and the Airport.

Of course.... before any of this... I think we need light rail along Broadway and West End :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

PHofKS, I think that's a great idea... although if you look at where the current rail line goes, I think this would make sense (since we're dreaming anyway):

NashvilleRail.jpg

Add 3 more stops - Two Rivers, Opryland, and Airport. Add a 2nd set of tracks starting at Donelson, going all the way downtown... as well as 2 sets of tracks for the Opryland and Airport extensions. Then, the portion between Donelson and the Riverfront would be highly traveled, and basically could be light rail, rather than commuter rail. Downtown would still be the nexus (eventually)... you would just have extensions from the main route going to Opryland and the Airport.

Of course.... before any of this... I think we need light rail along Broadway and West End :)

You make some good points, jice. I like the suggestion about the Two Rivers stop also. It would serve McGavock High and the Wave Pool.

I was thinking about bang for the buck with this option. It provides much needed services to two prime destinations with a minimal amount of rail and right-of-way costs. Other benefits include making the Opryland Convention Center more accessible to downtown, and hence, more attractive to conventioneers.

As for the rail option rather than running a bus up and down Briley Parkway, I think travelers are more comfortable with the rail option (I know I am when I travel). It is more environmentally friendly and dependible as traffic on I-40 and Briley Parkway can get crazy.

I sure would like to see the appropriate people take a deeper look at this option and examine it's feasibility.

Edited by PHofKS
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You make some good points, jice. I like the suggestion about the Two Rivers stop also. It would serve McGavock High and the Wave Pool.

I was thinking about bang for the buck with this option. It provides much needed services to two prime destinations with a minimal amount of rail and right-of-way costs. Other benefits include making the Opryland Convention Center more accessible to downtown, and hence, more attractive to conventioneers.

As for the rail option rather than running a bus up and down Briley Parkway, I think travelers are more comfortable with the rail option (I know I am when I travel). It is more environmentally friendly and dependible as traffic on I-40 and Briley Parkway can get crazy.

I sure would like to see the appropriate people take a deeper look at this option and examine it's feasibility.

I think adding the two stops with a bus option makes more economic sense. Since there aren't that many runs scheduled down the commuter line, it would be very easy to have two buses waiting for commuters to transfer either to the airport or to Opryland. These buses could also bring passengers from the airport and Opryland to the commuter line. This could be accomplished with very little new investment and would assure higher ridership on the commuter line.

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.