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jaxlvr_24

Best Mass Transit for Jax

Best Mass Transit for Jax  

72 members have voted

  1. 1. What is the best future mass transit system for Jacksonville?

    • Light Rail
      35
    • Commuter Rail
      32
    • Bus Rapid Transit
      5
    • Extend the Skyway
      19
    • None - Build more Highways
      2
  2. 2. How to Pay?

    • Local tax increase & Federal
      38
    • State should pay like they did for Orlando
      45
    • Federal
      7


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Jacksonville shouldn't expand the people mover. The technology is too expensive and it doesn't work that well. I think the area could benefit from a combination of light rail and commuter rail. Bus rapid transit has not been proven to work that well.

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I agree. They should build light rail before they expand the skyway. It costs less so it won't be as difficult to implement. I think the skyway gave Jax a bad reputation anyway. It would seem however that Bus Rapid Transit is in Jacksonville's near future. If it is done properly its almost as good as light rail.

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well i think that a commuter rail line running from nassau county or the airport to st. augustine would be the best form of public tranportation in jacksonville and it would be that much better if the state financed much of it, who here besides me thinks the BRT to be the worst idea?

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The only BRT line, should be one that runs to the beaches. The skyway was built as a downtown peoplemover system that will only work once there's a regional wide system to feed riders into it like Miami's Metromover. However, it should be extended a mile from Central Station the Stadium District. Game and events at Alltel, the arena and minor league ball park would impact its ridership numbers greatly.

Light rail is too risky because of expense it would cost to cover a region so spread out like Jax.

As it has been discussed several times before, the clear winner here, should be commuter rail. Simply because most of the city's main destination points are within walking distance of existing rail lines. Furthermore, several TODs could spring up along some large tracts of land that line the railroads. Although its difficult to negotiate with rail companies for use, the region also has the advantage of the rail companies (CSX, FEC) being headquartered here, plus both Amelia Island and St. Augustine want it, which means their counties could also share in the costs.

Here's a quick map, I put together for the discussion at the other forum. This entire system would run on existing rail, except for a BRT line to the beaches. The dark blue line would be phase 1, light blue - phase 2, the red line is phase 3 and the green line to Cecil Commerce Center would be the final phase.

mapbase8fs.jpg

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Thanks for the info on the BRT. I did a little more research on this and found a video. BTW, they call it Hybrid Rubber Tire Rapid Transit.

MAX Rapid Transit

Looks like it has some kind of optical guidance system. I wonder when we will see this in Jax?

shelter_3BIG.gif

shelter_1.gif

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Jax is far too spread out for BRT to work and it is WAY to expensive. We would almost be better off expanding the skyway with a simplistic monorail track throughout the core neighborhoods.

Lakelander's plan is perfect. The only thing I would add is a BRT leg across the Mathews down the Arlington Expsy. to Mayport. Maybe another future route would be to connect OP with the 9A JTB area via the Buckman bridge. There is a whole lot of traffic heading in that direction.

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I voted for commuter rail simply because I was spoiled by it when I lived up north. The trains are spacious, there's no need to worry about traffic and it covers a large area. I traveled on commuter rail from Boston to as far as New York, but it also covered shorter trips to Providence and even within greater Boston. Duval County would dwarf the majority of the Boston daily commuter coverage area.

Here's a link to the MBTA Silver Line, Boston's answer to BRT: MBTA Silver Line. I think JTA has taken a wrong approach. If BRT was to provide a solution, it would have been appropriate ten years ago, not now.

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For me it was a tie between Commuter Rail and Skyway. They both go hand-in-hand, and could complement each other, like Miami's MetroRail and MetroMover. While the Skyways seems inefficient, one must realize that it's only its small size that makes it so pathetic. JTA should work very hard with JEDC or whatever committees we have now to develop ALL the vacant land near Skyway stations to increase ridership. They should also extend it to the Veteran's Memorial (70 tower!) district.

Commuter Rail is so easy to put together, if you ask me. The tracks are already there, and they actually run outward to sensible destinations. Tri-Rail is a fine example of what Jacksonville's commuter rail could be like. Mind you, I think that Jacksonville will NEVER reach a ridership level of South Florida, beacuse the mindset of the people in Jacksonville does not seem as friendly to transit as South Floridians.

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Indeed. The skyway in Vancouver is a large system and currently being expanded. For transit to work, it has to go to enough places where people will use it. My only beef with running a skyway though a city is the fact they make the streets under the tracks kind of dark and tunnel like.

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^While Skyway tracks can make the street a little darker, I find that they can still be aesthetically pleasing. Concrete, unlike old rusty steel EL tracks can look quite nice. Banners, planters, decorative tile, and lighting can all be implemented to make them less...bland/obtrusive.

And when it rains, Hogan street is a much more pleasant walk than Laura. ;)

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well i believe i was reading a discussion such as this on another site, and let me bring some ideas i have heard and thought about to the table:

1) it will take JTA 20+ years to completely implement the bus system, we already have buses, i twenty years, are buses going to be a top of the line form of transportation, are they even going to be used at all? hypothetically they could be very outdated by then

2) i personally have nothing against buses and would ride them if i had to and they were convenient, but many people (i think mainly suburbanites) commute in to downtown or southpoint in their nice mercedes, and would not sacrifice their luxury commute to buses no matter how bad the traffic, because unlike commuter or light rail trains, buses hold a sort of inner city dirty connotation that repulses many people in sprawling communities, trains hold a cleaner, more modern and business type appearance to many people

3) commuter rail is FAR less expensive for more effectiveness... a new line in albuquerque NM will contain 9 stations, 51 miles, 5 trains, and will cost $125 million, $5-6 million annual costs, $105 million state/federal funding, a new line in Austin will have 32 miles, 9 stations, and cost only $90 million with $5 million yearly costs

JTA's buses will cost half a billion dollars or more!! for only 29 miles!!!

Here is the ONLY drawback...I think. A good commuter line in NE FL would run from Amelia Island or JIA to the Avenues or St. Augustine on a CSX line, and I know that CSX is REALLY difficult to deal with (remember it took the city years to convince the company to let the riverwalk go by their downtown riverfront building).

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CSX only owns the tracks from the Prime Osborn, north to Amelia Island. FEC (another local company) owns the line from downtown to St. Augustine and has stated in the past that they would be open to the possibility of commuter rail operating on their tracks.

Another positive is that the tracks running to Amelia are rarely used. I'm working on a development, that sides the tracks in Nassau County and was told by the client that only ONE train a day runs on them. I wouldn't be suprised if CSX would just sell them outright, since that's become their business model over that last decade or so.

Everything in this town points to commuter rail. Now its time for JTA to lay this BRT idea to rest and move on to bigger and brighter things.

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CSX has played hard ball in other cities where it owns right of way and knows that it can charge almost anything for a city to build a transit system on its property. They need to pass some kind of law that allows unused and little used train routes to be seized for the public good.

Hah, 95 votes so far. At least there is interest in the city for good mass transit.

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Commuter rail, IMO, would work best for Jax.

It should be noted, the State of Fla is not footing the entire bill for the Orlando commuter rail project. Only a portion of state funds are being used (albeit a large portion). The counties/cities involved & along the proposed route are also helping to fund this project.

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Nashville is building a commuter rail using existing lines for less then 50 million dollars. That is what jacksonville should try to do. Also, Jacksonville is fairly low in density and a commuter rail would work better since it is so spread out (biggest city in continental u.s.).

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I have to agree that it might be a good start to build a commuter rail system. It may be a good way to get people more supportive of rail travel without having to wait years for approvals. Didn't Nashville built its first line really fast?

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I have to agree that it might be a good start to build a commuter rail system. It may be a good way to get people more supportive of rail travel without having to wait years for approvals. Didn't Nashville built its first line really fast?

Actually, it is about to have its first run in march.

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I looked up the Nashville system here on UP and it is indeed impressive they got the rail up and running in such a short amount of time and at such low cost. What is holding up JAX from doing something like this?

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I looked up the Nashville system here on UP and it is indeed impressive they got the rail up and running in such a short amount of time and at such low cost. What is holding up JAX from doing something like this?

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Money and poor thinking by JTA. When I think of rapid transit I dont think of buses, buses are slow and they eat up alot of gas and pollute the air.Using light/commuter rail to get people downtown, airport,etc is more cost effective. They can build train station in the different outlaying communties,then have one central station downtown that connects to the skway,expand the skyway to the stadium area(this should have been done already) and other business areas downtown.When I lived in Atlanta I never drove downtown or to the airport. If anyone thinks Jax traffice is bad, drive in Atlanta's rush hour traffice.

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I rode the bus today for the first time!!

And it dropped me off a block from my house...something that a train could not do, though I would much like to see trains in J-ville (the commuter rail has my vote, but see my earlier post...)

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^Congratulations on your transit experience! :)

Of course commuter rail won't get people exactly where they want to be. It only works with great bus connections. While Tri-Rail in south Florida is great, I'd like to see better connectivity and more frequent service. Someday....

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