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  1. #26
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    Lowell, I'll be 'Sunshine Steve'.

    QLine is a 'work in progress' and priced (free) accordingly. Most of the problems are potentially solvable.

    Check back Labor Day week?

  2. #27
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    "Sunshine Steve" here:

    http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article...mprove-service

    According to the article behind the paywall, QLine averaged 6,300 passengers a day the week of July 12.

    Even though rides are free now, the paying estimate of 5,000 / day seems attainable, I would think esp. as the wait times decrease in the weeks/months ahead.

    Some of the criticisms listed in the initial post of this thread are addressed.

    My guess from what I read is that the QLine is exactly where it expected to be and maybe ahead of expectation. Sure the free rides enabled it to exceed ridership estimates, but if the service is good, folks will pay the modest ride charges.
    Last edited by emu steve; July-28-17 at 10:25 AM.

  3. #28
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  4. #29

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    If the QLine is meeting expectations or at least improving, then what will the local news blogs have to write about???

    "We rode the QLine for 24 hours and you won't BELIEVE what we saw!"

  5. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by emu steve View Post
    My guess from what I read is that the QLine is exactly where it expected to be and maybe ahead of expectation. Sure the free rides enabled it to exceed ridership estimates, but if the service is good, folks will pay the modest ride charges.
    What's more important is that the anticipation of QLine has been one of the factors influencing residential and retail development in the corridor. The biggest thing that will influence the eventual success of the QLine - and I believe it will be, in the long term, successful - is the development. The more people who live along the line, and the more things there are for them to do, the more it will enable people to go car-light or car-free.

    As a secondary benefit, if we can convince our suburban friends to give it a try, we might be able to change some people's minds about the necessity of funding regional transportation. Which was one of the reasons we built QLine in the first place.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by MicrosoftFan View Post
    What do you think the Q Line needs to improve on in order to be an integral part of Detroit's transit system, as well as being a viable option compared to private autos/bus/car sharing?

    My top complaints-

    1. Run the damn cars. I sat in the baking sun for 25 minutes yesterday waiting for a Q Line to come. It was stopped (surprise!) at the Montcalm station (perhaps the most useless station on system). 5 or 6, not 2 or 3 cars need to be running. 15 minute max wait time- any more and you could drive the distance while waiting for the train.

    2. Signal Priority is a must. The train moves fast between lights but it gets really bogged down in Midtown/Downtown. It can keep up with the speed of traffic but this is useless unless it doesn't stop every three blocks for a red light.

    3. Turn Montcalm, Sibley, and Baltimore into "flag stops". People can surely figure out how to push the STOP button mounted along the train. No one gets on at these station anyway, and the driver can see them. It only stops now on the assumption that SOMEONE might be getting off.

    4. Plan for the future. Obviously, a plan for an extension must be locked in within a year. The obvious candidates- Belle Isle, Ferndale, or Corktown. Pick one and go with it so the public (and savvy real estate investors) can see the plan and digest it until the next RTA referendum. Also, it wouldn't hurt to see a plan for a cut and cover tunnel under GCP- watching trains try to maneuver from the right to left lane is hilarious.

    Let me know what the rest of the transit savvy populace thinks.
    According to the articles in Crains and the Detroit papers, I believe you have or will get #1 - 3.

    #1 is getting there: Ave. time 16 min. 49 sec. Not far from a target of say under 15 minutes. Below is from the Detroit News article:

    "When we first began running the cars on June 12, the wait times between cars on Mondays through Saturdays was about 19 minutes,” Lijana said. “As of last week, the wait time was about 16 minutes and 49 seconds.”He said the goal is to shave that time down to 15 minutes by Labor Day.

    As far as the number of cars they’re running, most of the time, there are five."

    #2 and 3 below:

    Among other improvements, M-1 Rail reports:

    ■QLine has worked with MDOT and the city of Detroit to improve traffic signal timing at the intersections of Burroughs, Montcalm and Campus Martius. At Congress, an approaching QLine streetcar now triggers a signal change.

    ■The service no longer stops at every station unless passengers are boarding or exiting the streetcar. It stops at stations with waiting passengers or when onboard passengers push the stop button aboard the streetcar.

    **********

    Sibley and Montcalm's boarding and alighting will be mostly sports and entertainment related so activity will have real peaks and valleys. We'll see the true effect in a couple months with Comerica, Ford Field, and LCA drawing big crowds at their game times but pretty quiet otherwise.
    Last edited by emu steve; July-29-17 at 05:22 AM.

  7. #32
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    I'll add a P.S. to the post above:

    My experience with subways and big events, e.g., sporting events, inaugurations, protest marches, etc. in D.C. is that the transit system needs to be able to compensate or adjust for extremely heavy volume at a particular time, like end of a hockey or basketball game (not a 2 hour Monday - Friday rush hour).

    When LCA opens might have 20K fans leaving the arena within a 20 minute time period and who knows maybe 500 - 1K would like to take the QLine.

    It is unlikely that the QLine can have cars coming every 5 - 8 minutes to fill up and depart.

    If streetcars come every 10 - 12 minutes (not 15) it still might take an hour to handle all post game passengers. Will fans stand outside in January for 45 minutes waiting for a QLine car??? (I doubt it and the wisdom of it).

    In D.C. they run 8 car subway trains after sporting events and the subway at the Verizon Center is underground, not outdoors.

    Just consider the difference in capacity between an 8 car subway train and a QLine streetcar...

    And, the seating capacity at Verizon and LCA are virtually identical.

    BTW, I expect to be in town the weekend of Sept 23. I'll get a chance to see how traffic, QLine, etc. go for the Wings game and Lions game.

    One thing about being an EMU football fan. Traffic and parking are no problem at Rynearson Stadium.

    I expect the first Wings hockey game, Sept 23, to be a logistic mess.
    Last edited by emu steve; July-29-17 at 05:48 AM.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by emu steve View Post
    Lowell, I'll be 'Sunshine Steve'.

    QLine is a 'work in progress' and priced (free) accordingly. Most of the problems are potentially solvable.

    Check back Labor Day week?
    Okay, a week early:

    http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article...ge-for-service

    Two numbers:

    1). Wait times are down to 15 minutes during peak times.

    2). Ave. daily ridership = 5,500 over the last month

    Sounds like things are on target as to where QLine expected to be.

  9. #34

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    When do free rides end?

  10. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by MicrosoftFan View Post
    When do free rides end?
    Next Tuesday will be the first day of fared rides.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by MicrosoftFan View Post
    When do free rides end?
    Monday, Sept 4. Fares start Sept 5.

  12. #37

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    Also, will that blue wrapping come off and it resume back to the red or a better color scheme? I actually don't like the look of it. I loved the red when it was in testing phase.

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtowncitylover View Post
    Also, will that blue wrapping come off and it resume back to the red or a better color scheme? I actually don't like the look of it. I loved the red when it was in testing phase.
    It might be good to change the color scheme back to red when the free, introductory service is over.

  14. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by emu steve View Post
    Okay, a week early:

    http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article...ge-for-service


    Two numbers:

    1). Wait times are down to 15 minutes during peak times.

    2). Ave. daily ridership = 5,500 over the last month

    Sounds like things are on target as to where QLine expected to be.
    On target? I hope it is on target since it is free. Let me know how on target it is after three and a half months of paid riders.

  15. #40
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    This article was written by the QLline staff but has some very interesting nuggets.

    One thing which is most interesting is the ridership at the northern end suggesting, as indicated in the article, a lot of 'park and ride' patrons.

    http://www.detroitnews.com/story/spo...ine/105503972/

  16. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by emu steve View Post
    This article was written by the QLline staff but has some very interesting nuggets.

    One thing which is most interesting is the ridership at the northern end suggesting, as indicated in the article, a lot of 'park and ride' patrons.

    http://www.detroitnews.com/story/spo...ine/105503972/
    The Grand Station is always full when I hop on there. It has definetly boosted some street traffic in New Center. I do hope that Milwaukee Junction can join in on some of this new development.

  17. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by MicrosoftFan View Post
    The Grand Station is always full when I hop on there. It has definetly boosted some street traffic in New Center. I do hope that Milwaukee Junction can join in on some of this new development.
    ...including a park right at the junction itself so anyone can sit back and watch the trains roll by...one can dream of this, right?

  18. #43

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    Since the QLine started collected fares, I'm glad that things haved moved in an orderly fashion.

    If only the other transit authorities could learn from its example.

    Pre-pay at transfer points. Smartphone apps to help pay at farebox. Functional fareboxes...

  19. #44

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    QLine just decreased in ridership since the riders had to start paying up.

    Check the freep.

  20. #45
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    QLine is averaging 3,000 riders per day in warm weather. Not even People Mover numbers.

    These downtown trolleys have huge seasonal swings in ridership based on weather, mostly (because most riders are choice riders, using the train is like a tourist attraction). Look at the Cincy trolley numbers, and the Detroit system appears to be almost an exact parallel.

  21. #46
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    There were two, not one, factors taking place:

    1). Collection of fares,

    2). Start of school. Start of school is disruptive to a lot of things like sports and entertainment and then things kind of plateau after folks adjust to their new schedules, etc.

    It would be nice to have some data which could be 'seasonally adjusted' that is rider ship will fall in Fall, a little further in Winter, rise in Spring and probably be highest in Summer.

    But to do that we'd need say 3 years worth of monthly ridership data.

  22. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bham1982 View Post
    QLine is averaging 3,000 riders per day in warm weather. Not even People Mover numbers.

    These downtown trolleys have huge seasonal swings in ridership based on weather, mostly (because most riders are choice riders, using the train is like a tourist attraction). Look at the Cincy trolley numbers, and the Detroit system appears to be almost an exact parallel.
    The goal of the QLine's builders was never to maximize ridership. If it had been, they'd purchase more trains to run it at 5 minute headways and extend the operating hours, just to start. It's an amenity that will increase property values, serve as a demonstration project, and increase the appeal of all the new housing they're about to build (if you believe Olympia will follow through, we're looking at about 2000 units announced from just Olympia and Gilbert in the next few years).

    It's also extremely early. Why would we expect to people to instantly change their habits? Give it a couple years. Everyone currently living and working in downtown/midtown initially arranged their life around something other than the QLine, whether car, bus, bike, or whatever. Some of those will change what they do, but many won't. At the same time, new people will move in who choose to rely on it from the start. And any expansions to the line/system will help. Ridership will grow.

    This is a useful line serving a large number of high traffic destinations. The fundamentals mean that, assuming good service quality, it will easily pass the People Mover over time.

  23. #48
    DetroitNightLights Guest

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    The QLine should act as the Woodward corridor's Flexbus.

  24. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by Junjie View Post
    The goal of the QLine's builders was never to maximize ridership. If it had been, they'd purchase more trains to run it at 5 minute headways and extend the operating hours, just to start. It's an amenity that will increase property values, serve as a demonstration project, and increase the appeal of all the new housing they're about to build (if you believe Olympia will follow through, we're looking at about 2000 units announced from just Olympia and Gilbert in the next few years).

    It's also extremely early. Why would we expect to people to instantly change their habits? Give it a couple years. Everyone currently living and working in downtown/midtown initially arranged their life around something other than the QLine, whether car, bus, bike, or whatever. Some of those will change what they do, but many won't. At the same time, new people will move in who choose to rely on it from the start. And any expansions to the line/system will help. Ridership will grow.

    This is a useful line serving a large number of high traffic destinations. The fundamentals mean that, assuming good service quality, it will easily pass the People Mover over time.

    One day pigs will learn to fly eliminating the need for trucks to drive them to market.
    Last edited by Honky Tonk; September-24-17 at 06:47 AM. Reason: P

  25. #50
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    I hear the QLINE was crazy last night w. Tigers, Wings, Fox, Fillmore, Opera House, etc. all having a night for the ages in that part of Detroit.

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