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The Governor was going to veto because of the senate language that's why the deal was made today. Go AMP!

 

http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/politics/2014/04/17/lawmakers-reach-deal-amp/7825799/

 

They way I am reading it is that the State will not dictate how The Amp should be designed, but the state can just say "you can't do The Amp", even if no state funds are used...

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/blog/2014/04/lawmakers-reach-compromise-on-amp-bills.html

 

The businessjournal's article seems more positive for AmpYes. 

Edited by nashvylle
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In a weird twist the AMP would actually be easier to pass if funding is involved because the The Tennessee Department of Transportation budget is voted on as a whole. So, if AMP asked for a dollar from the state it would be included in the overall state budget vote for the year. Are you picking up what I am putting down?

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The way I am reading both is that the AMP can move forward. I predict there will be a change in the route and it only has to be signed off by the State Transportation director.

It does not hamper Metro in any way, in the design aspect. This is a loss for the anti amp folks from what I read.

 

Metro will probably shorten the route to save some money and alter the designs to work within a smaller budget.

 

I am glad this is over with for the time being.

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P2 history has shown that you are the ultimate cheerleader for 'all things' that benefit the local hospitality industry. Your support of BRT (with dedicated lanes) is not surprising, even though you admit it is a hardship on local Nashville drivers (taxpayers), and I have shown that it is not the best and highest utilization for the lanes...

nice comeback, I suspect the increase in the value of your property is due solely to things other than the improvements and additional businesses in the area that have come , in part, because of the tourism/hospitality industry. Actually the AMP is not a huge boon for the hospitality industry, in fact the tech industry and the medical industry are probably more to blame for the increase in calls for better mass transit. You know those guys and gals who are buying up residential property left and right all along this corridor. Hard to recruit bright young minds when they see the traffic mess and are unable to maneuver within an area they would like to live, work, and play.

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That's right Ron, John Schroer The Tennessee Commissioner of Transportation is a supporter of mass transit in Nashville. He will recommend the project and budget to move this forward. He is on board with Middle Tennessee having a regional transit system ever since he was mayor of Franklin.

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Just in. If project gets state funds then approval of budget equals state approval. If it doesn't use state funding, requires separate approval. So, this just happened 5 min ago in conference committee but, the way I understand it is that dedicated lanes are back on the table as long as state approves of project.

Thanks, FrankNash!  I got an e-mail response from one of our state representatives about 30 mins ago stating that she thought that a reasonable position had been reached.  Thanks for clarifying what this meant.

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It still makes me nervous that the General Assembly has to sign off... 

 

The state shouldn't be involved in local issues, unless the local government is asking for state funds. 

 

However, it looks like yesterday's article from media was incorrect. At least banning BRT across the state was not true. 

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The Wired article got me upset because I knew it was crap. Anyway that has been deleted by Daniel, because it was not me this time. I am glad to see movement forward again.

Looks as if we are on the verge of a really big boom here. Lots getting ready to happen and we will need some type of downtown transit and the sooner the better. I do not see Metro turning down the federal money. Again, that is the key. It's not the state, it's the Feds that need to pass a budget and that has not happened for a few years.

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The Wired article got me upset because I knew it was crap. Anyway that has been deleted by Daniel, because it was not me this time. I am glad to see movement forward again.

Looks as if we are on the verge of a really big boom here. Lots getting ready to happen and we will need some type of downtown transit and the sooner the better. I do not see Metro turning down the federal money. Again, that is the key. It's not the state, it's the Feds that need to pass a budget and that has not happened for a few years.

I guess I won't post anymore articles if they are going to be deleted just because they make you upset. I thought it was legitimate, and people all over Facebook had reposted the article, so the article in my mind was legit. Excuse me for contributing what I thought was an article worth reading. Your anger should be directed to Wired, and the thread not be deleted just because it angered you, or you did not agree with it.

 

Knowing our State Legislature, this may not be over and some states have banned BRT for a multiple of reasons. It does not make the article wrong just because it offends or anger you.

 

Not trying to be a hard arse my friend, but the article did have some good information. This BRT issue is going to divide the state like many issues. The bottom line is people do not want to pay for a service they themselves are not going to use. It's always that way.

Edited by Urban Architecture
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I guess I won't post anymore articles if they are going to be deleted just because they make you upset. I thought it was legitimate, and people all over Facebook had reposted the article, so the article in my mind was legit. Excuse me for contributing what I thought was an article worth reading. Your anger should be directed to Wired, and the thread not be deleted just because it angered you, or you did not agree with it.

 

Knowing our State Legislature, this may not be over and some states have banned BRT for a multiple of reasons. It does not make the article wrong just because it offends or anger you.

 

Not trying to be a hard arse my friend, but the article did have some good information. This BRT issue is going to divide the state like many issues. The bottom line is people do not want to pay for a service they themselves are not going to use. It's always that way.

 

Actually that article was all kind of misleading.  The Senate bill was voted on weeks ago.  The House bill, which had different language, a week ago.  Both would still have to somehow pass each other's vote and the governor.  The Senate bill doesn't necessarily "ban" BRT, it would just limit design:

 

Sponsored by Sen. Jim Tracy (R-Shelbyville), Senate Bill 2243 would require metropolitan governments or their transit authorities to get approval from local legislative bodies and the state commissioner of transportation to build and maintain a bus rapid-transit system using a separate and dedicated lane of traffic on a state highway or right of way.

The Senate bill would only allow projects to load and unload passengers on the right-hand side of a state roadway. Nashville’s proposed $174 million Amp bus rapid-transit line calls for a dedicated lane of traffic and a center lane drop-off design.

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/blog/2014/03/tn-senate-passes-limiting-amp-design.html

 

The House bill was much more "favorable" which allowed center dedicated lanes for the project:

 

The House passed an Amp-related bill by a 69-5 vote Thursday that excludes the stricter design restrictions found in a companion Senate version.

While the House substituted and conformed to the Senate bill, an amendment bearing language from the House committee level was then included in the bill, effectively rewriting the version introduced by Sen. Jim Tracy (R- Shelbyville) that passed the Senate in March.

That amendment doesn’t have the restrictions on center-lane designs for bus rapid-transit projects, as called for with the Senate version, according to Kara Owen, a spokeswoman for Republican House Speaker Beth Harwell.

The bill passed by the House bears the same language as previous legislation that had worked its way through committee level in the House.

The House amendment would require metropolitan governments to get the approval of a local legislative body and Tennessee Department of Transportation to build and construct a bus rapid-transit system with dedicated lanes on a state highway, as the Amp does for most of its proposed route along West End Avenue. Under the House bill, state funding for such projects would need approval from the General Assembly through traditional appropriations to the Tennessee Department of Transportation.

 

Plus, Mayor Dean had formed a committee with the "enemy" being part of it and proposed non-dedicated lane redesign of the hotly debated strech:

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/blog/2014/04/mayordean-announces-members-of-amp-advisory.html

 

Not that I agree with the bill, attempts, or redesign and I think our state does backwards crap too often, but it just goes to show how misleading and skewed things can be become, especially if Joe Smo is re-posting it all over the net.  People probably saw the article and thought how stupid and backwards TN is, which would (or could) be true if the article title was true and no other actions (that weren't mentioned) were taken.

 

Ha, although, kudos to them, they have now re-posted some updates:

 

http://www.wired.com/2014/04/tennessee-bans-bus-rapid-transit/?mbid=social_fb

 

1CORRECTION 3:50 p.m. Eastern 04.16.14: An earlier version of this story overstated the scope of the ban; it applies only to mass transit projects in counties with metropolitan governments, specifically Davidson and Moore counties.

2UPDATE 6:30 p.m. Eastern 04.17.14: This story has been clarified to make clear that it was the Senate that attempted to curtail BRT, and updated to include Thursday’s conference committee deal that will allow the project to proceed.

This statement from the original article is highly questionable, at least to me

 

The Senate legislation was startlingly specific: Senate Bill 2243 forbade “constructing, maintaining or operating any bus rapid transit system.”

It seems like a small snippet was taken out, which is completely ridiculous. Unfortunately, this is done all the time to skew and mislead people. While I cannot say if it (the last quote) is entirely true or accurate, I find that to be really fishy.

 

At any rate, it did force me to look up some things for clarification on my end!

Edited by timmay143
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Wanted to post this as an addition but I apparently quoted too much!

 

I also don't get this:
 

Because of the unusual way Tennessee subdivides county governments, the bill applies only to BRT systems in two counties–Davidson, where Nashville is located, and Moore, which happens to be home to the Jack Daniels distillery.

 

How the heck is having metropolitan and county governments "unusual?!"  As far as I am aware, most places are like this.  Plus, isn't Shelby county consolidated like Davidson?

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Wanted to post this as an addition but I apparently quoted too much!

 

I also don't get this:

 

 

How the heck is having metropolitan and county governments "unusual?!"  As far as I am aware, most places are like this.  Plus, isn't Shelby county consolidated like Davidson?

 

No, Shelby is not metropolitan, otherwise the city of Memphis would officially have more than 760,000 residents.

 

And they forgot one metropolitan county: Trousdale. The only counties that are metropolitan are Davidson, Moore, and Trousdale.

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No, Shelby is not metropolitan, otherwise the city of Memphis would officially have more than 760,000 residents.

 

And they forgot one metropolitan county: Trousdale. The only counties that are metropolitan are Davidson, Moore, and Trousdale.

Well, I'll be...I always thought Shelby had consolidated.  Ha!  I knew they forgot one!  I think I "knew" that at some time.

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I will only add that the efficiency can be added without AMP. The first two items you list below should/can be made available to the existing MTA bus service. They would be easy and affordable enhancements that we all agree would make the bus service a more reliable and enjoyable experience and could lure more mass-transent riders. The existing MTS busses are wheelchair accessible so that is a red-herring that entry-level platforms are a necessity...they are a perk... dedicated lanes are a Perk... think Disney FASTPASS.

Unless something new occurs, I am taking a break from this thread... I believe we all know where I stand and believe me I understand the 'mass-transit at any and all costs and inconvenience' message the prevails in this thread...
 

I don't think that any of this has to do with anything but efficiency - none of this really has to do with providing special amenities (unless being able to show up at a bus stop with a general idea of when the bus is coming and when I will get to my destination is a special amenity). 

 

  • Prepay - bus drivers are constantly sitting at a stop waiting for someone as they count through coins trying to find money for their fare - this puts buses behind schedule.
  • GPS Tracking - If a bus is running 15 minutes behind schedule, allowing riders to know this is seems reasonable.
  • Level boarding - No, this is not because riders do not want to be inconvenienced taking stairs. It is because there are a lot of riders in wheel chairs (I had at least one wheelchair pickup every day when I was taking the 3/5). It takes 3-4 minutes for a driver to get the ramp down, get the rider on with the chair locked down, and get the ramp back up. On days when we had two wheelchair pickups, my ride time would literally double. This also allows people to bring bikes right on instead of wasting time attaching them to the front of the bus.
  • Dedicated Lanes - This has already been discussed enough, but falls into the same category of time/predictability.

 

All I'm trying to say is that public transportation is far more efficient and cost effective when more people are riding. You won't hit the ridership tipping point until people can have reasonably predictable service that gets them where they need to be in a reasonable amount of time (i.e. not more time than it would take to walk).

 

The discussion on what balance to strike between inconveniences to drivers, cost to taxpayers, etc., is a reasonable one to have. I don't, however, think large groups of people will ever start riding a bus system with no semi-predictable arrival and departure times.

 

The bottom line is that it is better for taxpayers, drivers, everyone if more people are taking public transit - this is simply a more efficient, less resource-heavy way to move people around the city. Rather than looking at this from a "look at all of these things the bus riders are demanding" perspective, I think we are better suited to ask what we need to do to get more people riding public transportation and what will it cost to get us there.

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^If the population estimates are correct, we (Nashville) will overtake Memphis in population before the end of the decade for the first time since 1890 (presuming Memphis doesn't manage to annex more, and even that wouldn't be enough to offset their anemic growth), surpassing at or around 650,000. But if they had a "Metro" like ours (but didn't have the large incorporated cities in Shelby County), they'd be closing in on 1,000,000. Nashville's Metro won't get that big until, what, 2050 or 2060 ?

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^If the population estimates are correct, we (Nashville) will overtake Memphis in population before the end of the decade for the first time since 1890 (presuming Memphis doesn't manage to annex more, and even that wouldn't be enough to offset their anemic growth), surpassing at or around 650,000. But if they had a "Metro" like ours (but didn't have the large incorporated cities in Shelby County), they'd be closing in on 1,000,000. Nashville's Metro won't get that big until, what, 2050 or 2060 ?

Remember too, that Shelby County is larger by almost a third with 785 sq. miles vs Davidson at  526 sq. miles.

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^If the population estimates are correct, we (Nashville) will overtake Memphis in population before the end of the decade for the first time since 1890 (presuming Memphis doesn't manage to annex more, and even that wouldn't be enough to offset their anemic growth), surpassing at or around 650,000. But if they had a "Metro" like ours (but didn't have the large incorporated cities in Shelby County), they'd be closing in on 1,000,000. Nashville's Metro won't get that big until, what, 2050 or 2060 ?

 

Officially, they would be around 760,000, not the full 940,000.

 

Nashville's official Census figure is the "remainder" of Davidson County, meaning Davidson County minus the populations of Goodlettsville, Forest Hills, Oak Hill, Belle Meade, Berry Hill, and a tiny portion of Ridgetop. That amounts to about 25-26,000 people. The incorporated cities in Shelby County are much larger. Bartlett, Collierville, Germantown, Arlington, Lakeland, and Millington add up to about 180,000.

 

So that would just delay us until 2030 or 2040.

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I will only add that the efficiency can be added without AMP. The first two items you list below should/can be made available to the existing MTA bus service. They would be easy and affordable enhancements that we all agree would make the bus service a more reliable and enjoyable experience and could lure more mass-transent riders. The existing MTS busses are wheelchair accessible so that is a red-herring that entry-level platforms are a necessity...they are a perk... dedicated lanes are a Perk... think Disney FASTPASS.

Unless something new occurs, I am taking a break from this thread... I believe we all know where I stand and believe me I understand the 'mass-transit at any and all costs and inconvenience' message the prevails in this thread...

 

 

Yes, it's true that efficiency can indeed be added to our existing bus service with features like GPS tracking and prepay.  I'm glad you are willing to concede the purpose and benefits of such upgrades, which only a couple days ago you seemed to dismiss as unnecessary amenities being demanded by unreasonable Amp supporters.   Considering you got that part right, I'm not sure why you then chose to label the curb side pick up as a red herring considering that 12 Mouth clearly acknowledged the wheel chair accessibility of the current system but noted it takes several minutes to operate the lift, therefore again raising efficiency and schedule regularity issues.

 

That said, I think your Disney Fast Pass analogy is actually pretty appropriate.  You say Fast Passes are a perk, but who exactly are they a perk for?  Are they a perk for the people who go get the fast passes?  If they're such a perk, why doesn't everyone get in the fast pass line every time?  Yes the lines for fast pass users are shorter when they actually get to ride the ride, but they have to jump through a number of hoops in order to obtain that benefit.  First, they have to wait in a fast past ticket line, which could be pretty long in it's own right, then they have to find out when they will be allowed to use their fast passes for said ride and work that return trip into their schedule for the day.  That seems like a lot of effort to put in for a 'perk'?  Also, let's not forget that the regular lines will be shorter for all those who chose not to wait for and schedule a fast pass and instead chose to do it the old fashioned, instant gratification way.  That seems like a perk, too, right?  And the regular-line-waiters don't even have to do anything differently to experience their side of the perk.  Who else wins here?  How about the Disney line logistics gurus who can distribute the fast pass riders to non-peak ride times thereby making both the fast-pass line and the regular line even faster still!   

 

Much like going to wait in the fast pass line and conforming to the fast pass schedule, public transit users make sacrifices already that car drivers do not (waiting outside at bus stops, limited routes, transfers, adhering to fixed schedules, etc.)  Those sacrifices help clear up the roads for everyone else that wants to use the road in a car.  Currently, however, our city's 'fast pass' bus system doesn't actually provide any of the perks of Disney's fast pass system, since bus riders essentially have to get back in the same line of cars with everyone else.  As a result, there are a lot fewer people using the metaphorical fast passes in Nashville, and our lines are a lot longer as a result, to everyone's detriment. 

 

All that to say, excellent analogy on your part. 

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OK dudes, I really am not here at the moment, as I had resolved to shut my-ass up for good while.  But I have emerged from my burrow just enough to share a bit of intrastate upbeat down the street.

 

I know that some of you have mirrored a reference or two from the sister cities of the state, from time to time, even in this sub-forum, but in the event that you haven't already sniffed out the wigwam pow-wow lately from Hamilton County, then I'll just toss this link out to the curb.

 

While the projected estimates are arguably "optimistic", the announcement does suggest a contrast from the bass-ackwards "funnel planning" that has transpired in mid-state with the Metro "Marmaduke" administration and its bloated council during the past 4 years.  The Choo seems a bit half-way serious about the proposal.

 

http://www.wrcbtv.com/story/25313125/chattanooga-city-council-votes-for-light-rail-study

 

Perhaps all along they quietly and attentively have been reaping the merits of observing what not to do, by focusing on the smoldering battlefront in their capital city.

 

outta here,,,,

 

-=rr=-

Edited by rookzie
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1/4 the cost of the proposed AMP and no dedicate lanes?????? Sign me up....

 

"The proposed route would run from downtown to the airport and Enterprise South.   There would also be a south loop down Highway 27. 

Officials estimate a $35 million price tag to build the project.  The study would explore the economic impact on the city, including job growth and a boost in tourism."

 

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I wish I knew!  I plan to get out and about and see if I can follow the tracks. I know there are some abandoned tracks a bit further out, like near the Bonny Oaks/Tyner area.  I work downtown, and I cannot recall ever seeing any freight traffic (not affiliated with the Choo Choo) using the tracks that run behind the old station and the area around the Times Free Press building.  Those tracks would apparently be a part of this proposal. Also, I know the Tennessee Valley RR Museum uses tracks for passenger trips... and maybe these tracks are a part of the route above.  I'll have to take a bit of time and see if I can follow them. 

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