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Commuting: Cars Versus Public Transit  
User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1436 times:

I've never lived in New York City, so I wouldn't be able to say from experience, but there are apparently people there who swear by public transit and wouldn't dream of using a private vehicle for daily commutes.

Government often faces difficult choices related to transportation planning. Part of being a policymaker means that one must decide whether to finance infrastructure to support private vehicles, or instead allocate funding for public transit. One can see a bit of the distinction between choices made in Los Angeles and Orange Counties. In L.A., freeway construction has been given lower priority than increasing bus and rail lines. In Orange County, freeway construction has enjoyed government support, either in purely public form or as possibilities for tollway expansion.

My personal preference is for increasing and widening freeways and boulevards in Southern California and applying smart technology to avoid the problems associated with them. What is your preference, given all the monetary, environmental, and personal concerns attached to this transportation dilemma?

Thanks in advance.  Smile

37 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20822 posts, RR: 62
Reply 1, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1432 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Thread starter):
What is your preference, given all the monetary, environmental, and personal concerns attached to this transportation dilemma?




International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1424 times:

Cars all the way, baby.  Wink Those are nice vehicles.

I've owned a Lincoln, myself. They're gas guzzlers, though.

I am not a big fan of daily subway commutes; I tried it once, and didn't really care for it.

However, L.A. traffic is the pits; one can't avoid that reality.


User currently offlineGilligan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1424 times:

After visiting New York several times while driving and using public transportation I would say that if I lived in New York I wouldn't feel the need to own an automobile much less want to. From the GW bridge to my friends mothers house at Far Rockaway I spent almost 11 dollars in tolls. I don't think I could afford that on a daily basis.

Here in Houston I can see where rail would be really adventageous but this is the home of big oil and that is just not going to happen. They still have a lot of land available for laying concrete.


User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7657 posts, RR: 35
Reply 4, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1424 times:

Right now I´m using public trasportation for my commute. It takes about 2.5 hours vs. 45 minutes by car. But it only costs me about half of what it would with a car.


A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineSATX From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 2840 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1417 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Thread starter):
My personal preference is for increasing and widening freeways and boulevards in Southern California and applying smart technology to avoid the problems associated with them.

Um, you left out what the "smart" technology would be that solves/avoids the problems?

Quoting AerospaceFan (Thread starter):
What is your preference, given all the monetary, environmental, and personal concerns attached to this transportation dilemma?

Public transport, at least between cities.



Open Season on Consumer Protections is Just Around the Corner...
User currently offlineRobertNL070 From Netherlands, joined Sep 2003, 4534 posts, RR: 9
Reply 6, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1417 times:



Off topic. However, ten minutes to work by bike. Half-an-hour to the beach. Can't beat it here!

Regards, Robert

[Edited 2006-05-18 23:53:14]


Youth is a gift of nature. Age is a work of art.
User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8773 posts, RR: 42
Reply 7, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1408 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Thread starter):
What is your preference, given all the monetary, environmental, and personal concerns attached to this transportation dilemma?

Public transport.

If someone claims a metropolitan area like LA has no use at all for public transport because it's so huge and so wide-stretching, he's got to be kidding me. It's just a matter of organising the infrastructure so people can use it efficiently - and making a train with the capacity for 500 people more efficient than the respective cars is nowhere near rocket science, especially since most cars are at best occupied by two people.



Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineSlider From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6924 posts, RR: 34
Reply 8, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1400 times:

Quoting Aloges (Reply 7):
If someone claims a metropolitan area like LA has no use at all for public transport because it's so huge and so wide-stretching, he's got to be kidding me.

Well, that is a concern, to be fair. Many cities in the US lack the population density to make light rail or a saturated network of mass transit viable.

LA is a perfect example, as is Houston.

And part of the problem when some light rail line IS approved in concept is determining how many stops, where, what route it should run, etc. And the urban planners and traffic engineers are quickly run out of the room by political bureaucrats.

But if I had the choice, I'd take a transit option. But I don't have that choice presently. So I drive.


User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8773 posts, RR: 42
Reply 9, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1393 times:

Quoting RobertNL070 (Reply 6):

Truly Dutch, even if you aren't!

Quoting Slider (Reply 8):
Many cities in the US lack the population density to make light rail or a saturated network of mass transit viable.

The solution is called "park and ride". You drive to the nearest train station, in case that is a bit far away, park your car in a garage built for P&R and head to the city by train.

[Edited 2006-05-19 00:09:18]


Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineSlider From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6924 posts, RR: 34
Reply 10, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1385 times:

Quoting Aloges (Reply 9):
The solution is called "park and ride". You drive to the nearest train station, in case that is a bit far away, park your car in a garage built for P&R and head to the city by train.

Agreed that is a good way to go...but ride to where?


User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8773 posts, RR: 42
Reply 11, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1380 times:

Quoting Slider (Reply 10):
but ride to where?

Things like work for example.  Wink

Quoting Aloges (Reply 9):
head to the city by train.



Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlinePlanesarecool From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 4124 posts, RR: 11
Reply 12, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1375 times:

If i worked in London, i'd use the train, no doubts - at least until i get my hydrogen powered car - No emissions, cheaper energy, no CO2 emissions tax, no congestion charge...no £2000 season ticket. Would be pretty cheap come to think of it.

User currently offlineCPDC10-30 From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2000, 4811 posts, RR: 23
Reply 13, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1373 times:

I work in a small Welsh village, so I don't have any choice but to drive  Smile I think there are buses there from Chester one an hour, but they aren't active at the time that I have to get to work.

Even in Toronto though, the public transit only made sense if you follow the conventional thinking of living in the suburbs and commute downtown. If you are in the oppositte situation, the transit is severely lacking. I tried taking transit to work once (east Toronto to 401/Dixie in Mississauga) and it took 2.5 hours each way. Never bothered trying it again.


User currently offlineOB1504 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 3448 posts, RR: 6
Reply 14, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1364 times:

In Miami, it seems to be more convinient to use public transit:

http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/14611644.htm


User currently offlineStarAC17 From Canada, joined Aug 2003, 3411 posts, RR: 9
Reply 15, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1356 times:

Quoting Aloges (Reply 9):
The solution is called "park and ride". You drive to the nearest train station, in case that is a bit far away, park your car in a garage built for P&R and head to the city by train.

Thats what I did when I had to commute to Toronto from Mississauga last summer, it costed $44 a week which was far less if I had driven because I would have had to pay for gas as well as parking.

I find Toronto's system with the GO train and the Subway pretty good, they just need to expand the system to be able to serve YYZ from downtown but the city is broke so it won't happen for a while.



Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1344 times:

Thanks for everyone's great answers.  Smile Because of time constraints, I can respond only briefly right now....

Quoting SATX (Reply 5):
Um, you left out what the "smart" technology would be that solves/avoids the problems?

Well, traffic lights that allow variable and computerized timing, for example. Or vehicles with radar-guided control.

The U.S. government is testing "smart roads" that can automatically space out cars to an optimum degree, helping eliminate peristaltic traffic jams caused by arbitrary stop-and-go reactions on the part of individual drivers.


User currently offlineFlyMIA From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7282 posts, RR: 6
Reply 17, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 1320 times:

If Miami had a public transit system like London or Miami I would not be driving everyday. I would still own a car but would not take it to school and work everyday. However Miami transit system its lacking a bit, it is imporving but not great. I also enjoy driving, cars are a hobby of mine. Driving is a nice time to get away from things for a while and enjoy my car. Even if I lived in NYC I think I would still own a car just would not use it much. Problem in NYC is parking!


"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
User currently offlineAerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1305 times:

And there we have the problem -- there's simply not enough money to invest in infrastructure.

I think that the constant demands on public services drains our officials of the ability to implement effective plans.

Here in California, funds from the gasoline tax have been used to pay for social services. Essentially, they've been raided by the state government and replaced with IOU's.


User currently offlineMisbeehavin From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 914 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1298 times:

I'm all for public transportation and would use it as much as possibly, if it existed in Atlanta.

One of the things that bugs me about the ATL is that I need to get in the car and drive even if I want bread and milk, even though I live in town. It's retarded.


User currently offlineNewark777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 9348 posts, RR: 29
Reply 20, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 1297 times:

Quoting Aloges (Reply 9):

The solution is called "park and ride". You drive to the nearest train station, in case that is a bit far away, park your car in a garage built for P&R and head to the city by train.

We have them all over NJ, and they are always quite full. You see the Park and Ride signs everywhere on the highways.

As for me, I don't have to commute, but when I go into the city I always try to take the train if I can. It can be expensive, though. $16 round trip (and that's only non-rush hour time) can kill you sometimes.

Harry



Why grab a Heine when you can grab a Busch?
User currently offlineBasas From Canada, joined Jun 2005, 216 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 1296 times:

Quoting AerospaceFan (Thread starter):
My personal preference is for increasing and widening freeways and boulevards in Southern California and applying smart technology to avoid the problems associated with them. What is your preference, given all the monetary, environmental, and personal concerns attached to this transportation dilemma?

I personally will always use my car (and a gas-guzzling car at that). While I think its fine to build new transit options (be it rail, or whatever), I don't think you can just 'stop' expanding and building new freeways thinking its going to solve the problem. Eventually, it's just going to slap you back in the face as people can no longer bare the problem and move (and take their jobs) to cities who improve their traffic situation.


User currently offlineTraindriver From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 1282 times:

I lived In Manhattan in NYC and drove to work everyday. The
building I lived in had parking and the company I worked for had
employee parking at most locations. I worked crazy hours and
didn't feel like waiting 30 mins. for the subway at 3 AM.


User currently offlineManuCH From Switzerland, joined Jun 2005, 3012 posts, RR: 46
Reply 23, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 1275 times:
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HEAD MODERATOR

If we had a good public transit system, no doubt I would use it, because I actually hate having to use the car to go to work. But if you have a public transit system where your bus/train is every 45 minutes, and the commute takes 1 hour and 15 minutes, where the same thing by car takes 30 minutes, you start to wonder if it makes sense...

-Manuel



Never trust a statistic you didn't fake yourself
User currently offlineDETA737 From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 613 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (8 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1273 times:

I use public transit to get where I'm going simply because I live somewhere where I can (London). I also did so when I lived in Vancouver, but I think those are two cities where the density makes it feasible. In cities such as London or New York traffic seems so bad and chaotic at certain times that I'd rather deal without the stress. I grew up in suburban Connecticut and a car was essential. Most people drove everywhere since there were basically houses, a few stripmalls and shopping malls. The urban density was not there, so if I lived there again, I'd definately get a car.

25 Bill142 : The public transport here dosn't run often enough and runs to much inbetween hubs. It would take me nearly 90 minute to get to work on the bus as comp
26 57AZ : LA is a good example of "beware what you wish for." As for mass transit, they made their bed and can sleep in it. LA had an excellent high speed rail
27 Post contains links TedTAce : I know someonelse caught this, but I just wanted it known that I think your solution fits your needs and is basically what is EXPECTED from people of
28 VHVXB : Public transport all the way and free for me as well. But in Sydney it really depends when you travel espcially on trains. If you live near a transpor
29 Post contains images AerospaceFan : The chaos of reality has a way of mooting the debate. If one believes the advertisements for public transit we see everywhere, one would tend to be co
30 LHMARK : I'd happily use more public transportation were it viable here. Our bus system blows chunks. An outmoded hub-and-spoke network that forces inner-ring
31 RobertNL070 : I know. That's precisely why I wrote: I wouldn't know or care if it is "EXPECTED" from us. I just do it. Regards, Robert
32 Post contains images Mir : You're damn right there are. Lots of them. Heck, I have a car here, and the only times I've driven it this week are to take two friends of mine to an
33 PHLBOS : Sadly, many mass transit systems throughout the Northeast (anyway) are still scheduled with the Monday through Friday, 9-to-5er suburbanite who commu
34 Max999 : Not true in New York City. The greatest growth in ridership since the 1990's in New York has been during the nights and weekends. We are one of the f
35 SATX : It's never going to happen, at least not in my lifetime, unless the government agrees to protect car manufacturers and construction companies from al
36 Piercey : That's my transportation! Seriously, I would love to use PT here, one problem, IT'S NON-EXISTENT! In the mean time, it's bike and the occasional car.
37 AerospaceFan : You could be right, but stranger things have happened. Congress might decide to set precisely such limits. Since we're all members of an airliner Web
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