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  1. #1

    Default M-1 rail discussion

    So i was perusing through some of the M-1 rail documents available on their website... besides some pretty cool renderings I saw a table where they compared benefits and cons to having it curb-side vs. down the middle

    obviously they were considering both and I know that's a major problem among many people who have beef with it being curb-side... anyways just thought i'd show that, plus a couple cool renderings..

    also i heard from an article posted a few days ago (via stacy-witbeck) that construction of the rail itself is set to start next month... who knows anymore but still.. i'm sure we will see it soon enough!

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    also kind of funny we wont' be seeing this building on the left anymore... set to be demolished to make way for the new wayne state physician group building this summer
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    obviously these are preliminary renderings but those stations look pretty slick.. hope they have this kind of design
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    also found what looks like where they think future bus rapid transit routes may goName:  Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 5.43.21 PM.jpg
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    Last edited by SpartanDawg; February-12-14 at 05:44 PM.

  2. #2

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    Hey, that's great. But can you wipe that brown stuff off your nose? You obviously spent a little too much time kissing up the curbside parking trolley backers' hinder parts.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Detroitnerd View Post
    Hey, that's great. But can you wipe that brown stuff off your nose? You obviously spent a little too much time kissing up the curbside parking trolley backers' hinder parts.

    lol good one

  4. #4

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    I can foresee problems with the side-running alignment. I see it a lot: If there are a lot of cars parked in or a bus is stopped in the parking lane, other buses will stop in the driving lane next to the parking lane to let passengers off or for them to board. Also, I dropped a co-worker off at the main Detroit library in Midtown one afternoon the day after one of the recent big snowstorms. The parking lane right in front was halfway covered in snow and there were some cars that took up half of the far right driving lane. The streetcar can’t maneuver off the rails when there is an obstruction, so these obstructions will cause significant delays to passengers. Are they supposed to wait an extra 5-10 minutes for a tow truck to come every time a car stops on the tracks, or wait it out when a bus takes on or lets off passengers?

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by ASR89 View Post
    I can foresee problems with the side-running alignment. I see it a lot: If there are a lot of cars parked in or a bus is stopped in the parking lane, other buses will stop in the driving lane next to the parking lane to let passengers off or for them to board. Also, I dropped a co-worker off at the main Detroit library in Midtown one afternoon the day after one of the recent big snowstorms. The parking lane right in front was halfway covered in snow and there were some cars that took up half of the far right driving lane. The streetcar canít maneuver off the rails when there is an obstruction, so these obstructions will cause significant delays to passengers. Are they supposed to wait an extra 5-10 minutes for a tow truck to come every time a car stops on the tracks, or wait it out when a bus takes on or lets off passengers?

    You know, there are systems like this all over the place, and have been for years and years. There is abundant information about them. Read up a little before you start presenting hypotheticals as obstacles. For the question about buses stopped in front of the streetcar, they won't be. Bus stops will be in the parking lane; the streetcar will be in the lane to the immediate left of the parking lane.

    Typically how parking is managed is, before the streetcar starts running, lines are painted on the left side of where cars are supposed to park, and every car projecting a millimeter beyond that line is ticketed with a warning that on streetcar day such cars will be towed. Inevitably somebody complains to (say) channel 2, which does a story, then everybody gets the message. It will happen, but not so frequently as to be a problem. Retrieving a towed car is a frighteningly expensive and difficult proposition.

  6. #6

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    ok the snow removal thing is not gonna be an issue... currently they pile snow up on the curbs and sometimes in the middle lanes as well.. it's a matter of choice.. you really think with the rail being there that the snow removal people are still gonna do that?? that's a non-issue..

    as far as people parking sure there may be some people towed the first few months.. just a matter of people getting used to it.. however if they make an effort to clearly label 'no parking' and have signs I really don't think people are that dumb where it's going to be a serious issue past maybe the first week? if at all.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by professorscott View Post

    Typically how parking is managed is, before the streetcar starts running, lines are painted on the left side of where cars are supposed to park, and every car projecting a millimeter beyond that line is ticketed with a warning that on streetcar day such cars will be towed. Inevitably somebody complains to (say) channel 2, which does a story, then everybody gets the message. It will happen, but not so frequently as to be a problem. Retrieving a towed car is a frighteningly expensive and difficult proposition.
    It is going to be real exciting to have all these problems that vibrant cites have like congestion, to many people, the access and right of way for public transport just to name a few. It's going to be great.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by professorscott View Post
    You know, there are systems like this all over the place, and have been for years and years. There is abundant information about them. Read up a little before you start presenting hypotheticals as obstacles. For the question about buses stopped in front of the streetcar, they won't be. Bus stops will be in the parking lane; the streetcar will be in the lane to the immediate left of the parking lane.

    Typically how parking is managed is, before the streetcar starts running, lines are painted on the left side of where cars are supposed to park, and every car projecting a millimeter beyond that line is ticketed with a warning that on streetcar day such cars will be towed. Inevitably somebody complains to (say) channel 2, which does a story, then everybody gets the message. It will happen, but not so frequently as to be a problem. Retrieving a towed car is a frighteningly expensive and difficult proposition.
    There's more center running systems than curbside. Every time someone says "there's plenty of systems out there like Detroit's" they always list streetcar line in cities that are the total opposite.

    You can run rail curbside of course, but you can't have cars cross over or drive on the tracks ever to run effectively.

    Detroit's system will pretty much be as close as you can get to a bus swapped out rubber wheels for steel.

    The reality in planning and design is always assume enforcement will be poor and maintenance will be non-existent and design from there. You could have 99.9% efficiency on a given line with motorists staying clear of tracks or cars getting towed. But I guarantee you that 0.1% will be one bad driver that opens their car door without looking and suddenly paralyzes service for an hour.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Detroitnerd View Post
    Hey, that's great. But can you wipe that brown stuff off your nose? You obviously spent a little too much time kissing up the curbside parking trolley backers' hinder parts.
    You seem to discuss people more than ideas, that's a common theme. Instead of attacking, you should instead try supporting whatever stance you have with opinion and facts.

    The OP presents a lot of data, as well as personal opinion.

    Personally, I'm for center-run. I worry a lot about cars breaking down on the tracks as well as snow removal issues with curbside. Center-run conflicts less with vehicle traffic.

  10. #10

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    Informative post, SpartanDawg. I see merit in both curb-side and center running light rail. I guess we're going to be having a blended system, and that's fine. Either way it's a big bump over what we have now.

  11. #11

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    Hypothetical forced choice question-
    Would the center run advocates prefer for the M1 rail line to be postponed to a indefinate date because of a lack of adequate funds if it cost more or have the curbside break ground this spring if say that system cost less?
    Last edited by ABetterDetroit; February-12-14 at 09:00 PM.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by ABetterDetroit View Post
    Hypothetical forced choice question-
    Would the center run advocates prefer for the M1 rail line to be postponed to a indefinate date because of a lack of adequate funds if it cost more or have the curbside break ground this spring if say that system cost less?
    If it's postponed/failed it could be decades before transit could happen.

    If this is built wrong, which it will be, then at least there's something to build off, and future lines and extensions will be more possible, and those can be done right.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason View Post
    If it's postponed/failed it could be decades before transit could happen.

    If this is built wrong, which it will be, then at least there's something to build off, and future lines and extensions will be more possible, and those can be done right.
    If I wanted to argue with you, I would say: "Yeah, check out the People Mover and how that turned out!"

    But I do agree, we need to move forward with it. We really need to push getting it up into the suburban communities. Imagine housing prices within walking distance to Woodward going up. Imagine density going up too. This would have similar effects in both Detroit and the 'burbs, although I think the suburbs would get more benefit.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by SpartanDawg View Post


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    I am very confused by this chart. Center running would have caused the elimination of a business?

    Regardless, I'm pumped for this. It's going to be a huge improvement over what we have now, even with its flaws.

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    also this is going to be the configuration of Woodward through midtown and downtown (from Adams St to Burroughs St top pic / downtown bottom pic)

    So obviously the biggest thing that I see as a plus is going through midtown it cuts down to 5 lanes of moving traffic. I love that as a midtown resident because i feel like it will slow down the cars and make it much more walkable. I feel like now with it being basically 9 lanes people fly down it and it just seems so disconnected.
    Last edited by SpartanDawg; February-12-14 at 11:37 PM.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by 48307 View Post
    Personally, I'm for center-run. I worry a lot about cars breaking down on the tracks as well as snow removal issues with curbside. Center-run conflicts less with vehicle traffic.
    OK, a multi-car train runs down the center line. It is jam packed full of Detroiters. It reaches a popular stop. Do all of the debarking passengers file down to the crosswalk and wait for the light to change before going to the sidewalk? Do the Detroiters surge in a mass across the traffic lanes in the middle of the block bringing traffic to a standstill?

  17. #17

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    Does anyone know if this is the actual design of the new cars?
    http://detroit.curbed.com/archives/2...-look-like.php

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hermod View Post
    OK, a multi-car train runs down the center line. It is jam packed full of Detroiters. It reaches a popular stop. Do all of the debarking passengers file down to the crosswalk and wait for the light to change before going to the sidewalk? Do the Detroiters surge in a mass across the traffic lanes in the middle of the block bringing traffic to a standstill?
    There would be stations designed to allow people to get off the train and be protected from traffic and queue at the station. Stations would be near existing crosswalks with signals, or new ones would be erected in extreme cases. Lights could be controlled so that shortly after a train arrives that it stops NB\SB traffic and allows folks to cross. Although there is a seemingly true stereotype\generalization that folks in Detroit don't understand how a crosswalk works.

    Your scenario can go both ways. There's a very popular stop for curbside rail, but Comerica Park is on the other side of Woodward. Do all the people go running out into the street? Or do they have to queue on the west side of Woodward to wait to cross?

    The only difference is that with center-run you will always have to cross half the street, with curbside you only have to cross the street half the time, but you must cross all lanes, not just half.

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by getmoore View Post
    Does anyone know if this is the actual design of the new cars?
    http://detroit.curbed.com/archives/2...-look-like.php
    Or maybe just like this one?

    Attachment 22727

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by 48307 View Post
    Imagine housing prices within walking distance to Woodward going up. Imagine density going up too. This would have similar effects in both Detroit and the 'burbs, although I think the suburbs would get more benefit.

    Yeah, the last trolley we had running downtown had a big impact on property values. It took Jefferson and Washington Boulevard, and turned them both into vacant ghost towns. This time, though, I'm sure the trolley will turn the Cass Corridor into Hong Kong.

  21. #21

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    I still maintain that if you want the "political push" from the masses to get it built, you need to start in Pontiac and build south along Woodward towards the river. From Pontiac on down towards Detroit, center running can use the existing median built for the old DUR interurbans when they widened Woodward which will make construction easier. As the line approaches Detroit, there will be a massive push from the voters in Oakland County to get it finished.

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hermod View Post
    As the line approaches Detroit, there will be a massive push from the voters in Oakland County to get it finished.
    Thanks for making sure I have a great laugh today. Once it get close to Detroit there will be a massive push to stop construction as it is 'not financially feasible' and the entire region shouldn't have to pay for something in Detroit.

    If it started in Pontiac, it would certainly end in Ferndale.

  23. #23

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    If it started in Pontiac, it would end in Pontiac.

    Bloomfield Hills and Bloomfield Township would not allow, under any circumstances, light rail down Woodward. Bloomfield Hills doesn't even allow bus stops, and there are no sidewalks along Woodward from the Pontiac border to Birmingham, a distance of 5-6 miles.

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bham1982 View Post
    Bloomfield Hills and Bloomfield Township would not allow, under any circumstances, light rail down Woodward. Bloomfield Hills doesn't even allow bus stops, and there are no sidewalks along Woodward from the Pontiac border to Birmingham, a distance of 5-6 miles.
    Good point. Birmingham would be the most likely termination point. To extend to Pontiac would nearly double the Oakland County portion with significantly less density. You could make a case for terminating in the Somerset area, but that would be about it. If Pontiac were to be served by rail, it would most likely be commuter rail.

  25. #25

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    no bus service in bloomfield? why is that? Don't they have kids/teens? seniors?

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