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Jernigan

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Whatever happened to the gondola system that was proposed for Colonial Drive? It would be very easy to place this above Gertrude's Walk and maybe above the downtown BRT lanes. Stations could easily be built within the multiple parking garages along the walkway. It could be a transit option that also had a nice tourist sight-seeing aspect to it. The new cars on Roosevelt Island and Sentosa Island are both perfect examples of the great cars that could be in Orlando. I see Gertrude's Walk transforming into a pedestrian street with shopping along it that caters to the soon to come (back) downtown tourist, this shopping corridor though will require a transportation option for those in this area. I personally think a gondola system would be the best option along the I-Drive corridor as well.

It looks like other cities are already jumping on board with this transit option. Whatever happened to the plans here?

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Whatever happened to the gondola system that was proposed for Colonial Drive? It would be very easy to place this above Gertrude's Walk and maybe above the downtown BRT lanes. Stations could easily be built within the multiple parking garages along the walkway.

Why spend all that money to provide another transit system that would basically run parallel to an existing efficient mass transit alternative just two short blocks away? A gondola system might work better in an area like I-Drive but for now I think the expansion of Lymmo or introduction of a cross-town light-rail line are our most realistic options downtown.

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  • 9 months later...

On August 14th, LYNX is debuting two commuter express-type routes called, "FastLink." Unlike the actual express buses that originate in Clermont and Orange City and take the highways into downtown, these buses will cost the standard fare of $2 and not $3.50.

It's not letting me embed links for some reason....so here is the link to route maps:

FastLink 441

Where will it take me?

This service will travel along Orange Blossom Trail (OBT) between Osceola Square Mall in Osceola County and LYNX Central Station (LCS) in downtown Orlando. Stops will be at OBT and Holden Avenue, Florida Mall SuperStop, Central Florida Parkway (near Costco), and Main Street and Vine Street.

What time does it operate?

The Monday-Friday 53 minute trip will leave LCS every 30 minutes 6:30-7:30 a.m. and 4-5 p.m. Service on the 50 minute trip will leave Osceola Square Mall every 30 minutes 5:25-6:25 a.m. and 4:55 p.m.-5:55 p.m.

FastLink 17-92

Where will it take me?

This service will travel along U.S. 17-92 between Seminole Center and LYNX Central Station (LCS) in downtown Orlando. Stops will be at Florida Hospital, Webster Avenue and Denning Drive, Fernwood Boulevard and Oxford Road, and U.S. 17-92 and SR 434.

What time does it operate?

Morning trips will only operate from Seminole Centre at 6 a.m. (46 minutes), 6:25 a.m. (55 minutes) and 7 a.m. (55 minutes). The 59 minute afternoon trips will only depart from LCS every 45 minutes 4:15-5:45 p.m.

Edited by Downtown Steve
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I think within maybe a 3-5mi radius of Orange and Central may work, focusing on the Sunrail stations, Main Street districts, major employers, Lynx superstops etc. Last week they (FDOT and Ivanhoe Main Street Dist.) converted one of the coveted parking spaces on Orange Ave across from Lake Ivanhoe into a "bike corral" with a few bike racks. If there was that kind of commitment in these neighborhoods, I think the bikes would get some work. I don't know if they would see enough use to make it economically viable, though.

P.S. - here are photos of the Orange Ave project - https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150252587676431.321376.77934391430&type=1

Edited by smileguy
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I think bikesharing could work here, but it wouldn't be best to launch it as strictly a commute option. The vendor and/or municipality should create tour routes like the destinations smileguy noted and have pamphlets/maps available at each bike station.

By including stakeholders like businesses or neighborhood districts, the marketing would be spread through various channels. Group rides could be promoted through the local bicycle advocacy groups - maybe meet near Lake Eola and ride to the museums, to college park or to other areas people might not try riding alone.

In terms of commuting: If I were a business somewhere like Thornton Park or South Eola or on Colonial, I'd offer a discount for anyone who bikes over. Until LYMMO expands east, a bicycles make it possible to get out of the CBD and eat during a lunc h break.

Also, the photo above looks like a normal bikeshare station, but these systems usually have a central station that has some amenities like lockers, showers, repair kits for sale, etc. This would be vital given the weather in Orlando. The McDonald's one in Chicago is a good example and DC has one too near Union Station.

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Great ideas, Steve. I would also be concerned about bikes piling up at certain locations - for example, will everyone try to ride them to Amway Center from their neighborhoods and then either A) run out of spaces at the station or B) have the bikes stay there when these people do something else downtown or take a cab home. Is there a circulation issue where bikes wouldn't be returned? How do other systems deal with this?

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I don't think there's any perfect way if the system is set up to return bikes at any location. That's why the carsharing programs usually require you to return them where you got them.

Here's a good article about addressing this specific issue at the DC Bikeshare program. The vendor is assessed a fee if any station is empty or full for more than 3 hours. One idea I didn't see mentioned there but is often brought up for managing vehicle congestion is variable pricing. Meaning that if a bike station that has 5 out of 20 bikes left would cost more to rent per bike than one that has 15 out of 20. If you are riding it for recreation, you'd be more inclined to walk a few blocks to rent from one of the less popular stations for a few hours to save some money.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Posted from today's Downtown Confidential newsletter:

Last Monday, the Orlando City Council approved amendments to the City's Interlocal Agreement with LYNX. As of April 2009, the City secured nearly $20 million in federal funding and the amendments to the Interlocal agreement allocated for three mobility projects within Downtown Orlando.

The agreement facilitates construction of the following three projects:

- Downtown East/West Lymmo service from Thornton Park to Parramore extending from Summerlin Avenue to the east to Westmoreland Drive to the west.

- The Parramore Lymmo project which will provide the Parramore and Callahan Neighborhoods with premium level transit to access the Central Business District, LYNX Central Station and SunRail near the City's proposed Creative Village.

- Gertrude's Walk from South Street to Colonial Drive, which will provide additional mobility options to support Downtown's businesses, offices and residences.

By leveraging these federal grants, the City is investing less than $6 million to complete nearly $25 million worth of projects.

Construction on these projects is expected to begin in 2012. All three projects benefit our Downtown core and enhance the quality of life for residents and visitors by improving walk-ability and connectivity, providing access to additional transportation options between SunRail and other LYNX services and promoting more compact, infill development.

To stay informed of all things happening Downtown, please visit www.downtownorlando.com.

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I'm glad to see these services arrive. I always wonder how long the grant funding is estimated to last for transit projects like this. For example, will $20MM keep these 2 new Lymmo routes open for 5 years, 10 years, 15 years?

Also in the news regarding Lynx...

They will have the same access to modified traffic lights as fire service.

http://www.orlandose...,0,615204.story

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^Sad but true. It's extremely difficult to navigate this forum after the "update." I'm sure we are not the only ones who have expressed this.

I read these forums from my Google Reader and was wondering what the fuss was about. I'm not sure what problem this update was supposed to resolve. It seems like change for the sake of change.

As for Lymmo, has there been any movement on the extension to Florida Hospital/College Park?

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As for Lymmo, has there been any movement on the extension to Florida Hospital/College Park?

There is a neighborhood meeting for the that extension tomorrow (Monday, 8/29) evening.

www.lymmostudy.com has all the info. If I am able to make the meeting, I will ask about funding and timeline and post what i can find out.

Here is a survey where you can have input on the alignment. http://lymmostudy.com/survey_north-south.php

Here are the alternatives.

6091913018_7bc52e94de_b.jpg

North Alignments

I personally like Alt. D here, because it includes both College Park and Mills Park, but either route will bring you from DT to Florida Hospital.

6091913354_8def04bcf1_b.jpg

South Alignments

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I like Alternative D, too. College Park and the Museums/Mills Park area are worthy destinations that aren't quite walkable from the train station, but I'm wondering about the travel time and how many buses would be needed to support a route that splits at the hospital. Where do you make the decision to get on the bus for College Park or Mills Park? Downtown or transfer at the hospital? A trip from downtown to College Park could end up taking 30 minutes one way and not something I'd chance on a lunch break.

As I'm looking at these routes, I'm wondering what the trolley routes for Orlando looked like 60 years ago if there were trolleys here then. It may be time to dust off those old routes and put the tracks back in.

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I think a combination of D & E would work best, it should include the Vimi area & Edgewater Dr. Granted, this may be asking too much of a free service.

For Southern end, I think the Lymmo should stick to Orange Ave and loop at ORMC, SODO Michigan shopping center but stay out of the residential area.

For both areas, the more visibility the better so it should try to stay on the main roads. And advertise free ridership in big letters on the side of the bus. A lot of people don't realize the Lymmo is free.

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I was thinking about this yesterday - is there a reason to expand the BRT to these areas? South Orange is served by several regular LYNX routes, and there is service every 15 minutes along N. Orange to Florida Hospital. I wonder what the difference in cost and efficacy would be of instituting a fare-free zone for LYNX busses in a certain area. maybe from Michigan to Rollins along Orange Avenue and within the CBD/Thornton Park/ South Eola district? Adding these services - with equipment and operators - for the North, South, and East/West Lymmo expansions has to be quite costly.

I know the Paramore expansion, and I believe the current "base" Lymmo route are partially funded through federal grants. Maybe these new lines are being put in place to leverage further federal funding.

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Why can't B and E be combined? IMO I would rather see an entire LYMMO line connecting College Park to Ivanhoe Village and Mills50, then a completely different LYMMO line for Uptown a, CBD, and SoDo. Then you could have these lines connected through bus and SunRail. I don't understand why they are making you choose between Mills50 and College Park. Option E seems best as it includes Florida Hospital Health Village (can we please shorten this to FHHV or maybe FlVill or something), Mills50, Ivanhoe Village, and Virginia Ave. Mills50 is soon to get a lot more people once Mills Park opens and Option E will run right in front of that project.

I do like College Park and love seeing how this area is becoming a part of the downtown community but until Princeton gets retail along it, which I don't think its zoned for, I don't see it being truly connected to downtown. Why isn't Orange, to Virginia, to Princeton, to OBT, to Creative Village and back to LSC an option?

In my dream world there would be numerous LYMMO lines, each around the SunRail stop and one down Alafaya. Then I would have SunRail bump up the service to every 15mins from Winter Park to Sandlake. But thats still decades away. A urban gondola system built above the SunRail tracks could also solve this. Have it go from Edgewater Drive (just build the station into the new building thats being proposed for the corner of Edgewater/Princeton to Florida Hospital (an easy add on to an exisiting parking garage), to Mill50 (plenty of spots for this) to downtown to SoDo to Sandlake. With a gondola system it would be much more frequent than rail and could easily compliment the rail system. I view SunRail as an option for distance travel, county to county, then gondolas as more local travel, district to district. And buses run within each district. I would love to see every district have its own distinct bus system, a nice city wide gondola system, and then the regional SunRail but for now this is all just a pipe dream.

Also while on the topic of the Lynx Central Station. Why does LSC not have bays for third party buses? Having RedCoach, ChinaTown Express (I-95 Coach) and Greyhound stop off at the LSC would be perfect. I have looked at many options of traveling between Orlando and Tampa and RedCoach does it but the Orlando station is all the way out at the airport and Lynx doesn' t run early enough for me to take the bus from here (Winter Park) to there. The main bus terminals in most large cities seem to have bays that other companies can rent or use for free. LSC is large enough for this and it would really help the local system connect to a regional and national bus system better.

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I like Alternative D, too. College Park and the Museums/Mills Park area are worthy destinations that aren't quite walkable from the train station, but I'm wondering about the travel time and how many buses would be needed to support a route that splits at the hospital. Where do you make the decision to get on the bus for College Park or Mills Park? Downtown or transfer at the hospital? A trip from downtown to College Park could end up taking 30 minutes one way and not something I'd chance on a lunch break.

As I'm looking at these routes, I'm wondering what the trolley routes for Orlando looked like 60 years ago if there were trolleys here then. It may be time to dust off those old routes and put the tracks back in.

Not exactly a trolley, but regular service (up to 8 times a day) was provided by the old Dinky Line between what is now Dinky Dock next to Rollins and downtown O-town. It persevered (belching smoke all the way) until the 1960's. The route is now being converted to a trail:

http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports_thechaingang/2010/02/dinky-line-land-bought-for-orlando-urban-trail-finally.html

There are also very small tracks just to the west of OBT (not to be confused with the Pinsly tracks which are still in use) which can be seen along some of the older brick streets just north of Central, and I was once told they were part of a trolley, but never heard any details about. They may well go back to the horse-drawn era cloudship mentioned.

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  • 1 month later...

Lynx snares $3.2M in federal grants

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/business/os-lynx-federal-grants-20111018,0,4428963.story

Lynx, which serves Orange, Seminole and Osceola counties, plans to spend $2 million on a new depot in downtown Kissimmee and $1.2 million studying ways to connect SunRail passengers from downtown Orlando to Ocoee to the west and the University of Central Florida to the east.

The Kissimmee center will feature eight bus bays and 16 shelters for waiting passengers. Other enhancements include sidewalks, information kiosks, landscaping, lighting, passenger seating and bike racks. Construction could begin within a year.

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