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A Vision of future transit in Grand Rapids.


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As any one living in Grand Rapids and keen to the ins and outs of urbanism knows, this city is at a cross road. In one direction is a stagnate social-economic fate suffered by far too many Midwestern industrial cities while in the other direction is a bright and prosperous future of living in a Grand Rapids, MI that can successfully compete for talented people, good paying jobs, and a fair share of the global economic pie. The key to stepping into a prosperous future is to step aboard a robust mass transit system that would bind together this city's strengths, asset and potential into a unified social economic engine that would propel Grand Rapids, MI into a great and positive future. That in mind I would like to present a sneak peak into a Vision of future transit in Grand Rapids based on the Stadler 2/6 GTW Articulated DMU commuter/light rail train. Stay tune there will be more to come.

View of train from station


Aerial View of visionary 9th Street and Seward Ave. station. This stretch of Seward Ave has been modified with traffic calming measures to increase safety for pedestrians entering and leaving the station.


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There are several nice features of this style of train:

- No overhead catenary (electric wires)

- Diesel electric power plant that uses 40% less fuel than a standard DMU

- Can ride with traffic if need be in embedded rail

- Accelerates well, much like electric light rail vehicles

- Can be specially built with increased articulation to allow for better turning radii than standard DMU's

- Can ride on existing freight rail with coordinated service

- Because of that, it's much, much less expensive than traditional light rail

As tamias6 said, more to come...

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As George Jetson Monorails are I have yet to see one in a US city work other than Walt Disney World. There's the people mover in the Motor City. But up until resently there has been no real effort to improve or expand the line since it was built. They are very expensive to build plus there is that theme park ride image to deal with before people would take them seriously.

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