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There are few cities I have visited in my life where I had an unrelenting physical urge to leave. Houston is one of them. The rest will remain unnamed for now.

 

It's huge. Definitely gulf coast southern. Great BBQ and Tex-Mex. Other than that, my god, it's hideous.

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It's not a race, but it doesn't say much for the rail transit. If it takes longer to ride the streetcar (or light rail) than it does to drive, than why should anyone ride the streetcar?

 

 

Did you really just say that? On PAGE SIX HUNDRED AND SEVENTY-SIX of the streetcar thread?

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It's not a race, but it doesn't say much for the rail transit. If it takes longer to ride the streetcar (or light rail) than it does to drive, than why should anyone ride the streetcar?

 

 

Really?  Pretty much every transit system in the world is slower than driving. That's not the reason people take transit. I was in Chicago last week taking the Brown Line El from Lakeview to the Loop. Going 12mph around the curves is absolutely slower than driving, but I dare you to call the El a failure.

Riding transit is all about being productive or social on your commute. When I jump on a bus or train I don't think about how quickly I'm moving. Couldn't care less. I know when I'll be getting there because were on a set schedule and worrying about the commute is pointless. That's one of the reasons the 3C debate drove me crazy. That train does not need to be faster than driving to be successful. 

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It's not a race, but it doesn't say much for the rail transit. If it takes longer to ride the streetcar (or light rail) than it does to drive, than why should anyone ride the streetcar?

 

 

Is there not stress with driving? What about Distracted Driving Laws? How about being able to do work on a train? Or read a newspaper? Or take a nap? Certainly travel time should not be the only thing considered when choosing a mode.

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I walk to and from work a lot. It's 1.5 miles. Taking the bus or driving is always faster. Does that mean walking is unsuccessful? Just trying to follow Eighth and State's logic.

 

I think that depends how much you spent on your shoes.

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I walk to and from work a lot. It's 1.5 miles. Taking the bus or driving is always faster. Does that mean walking is unsuccessful? Just trying to follow Eighth and State's logic.

 

I think that depends how much you spent on your shoes.

 

I figure out a lot of stuff while I'm walking. Value of that has sometimes been very huge.

 

I do spend a lot on shoes, especially after this winter, I suspect.

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There are few cities I have visited in my life where I had an unrelenting physical urge to leave. Houston is one of them. The rest will remain unnamed for now.

 

It's huge. Definitely gulf coast southern. Great BBQ and Tex-Mex. Other than that, my god, it's hideous.

 

 

Houston is beyond gigantic.  It has several outer "midtown" areas that dwarf any of the Ohio downtowns.  The Texas Medical Center has 106,000 workers -- about 1/3 more than DT Cincinnati.  Some think tank-type writers argue that Houston is the "ideal" American city, especially for immigrants, because its ability to endlessly expand outwards means housing prices have stayed low.  So many people who would not be able to afford a house in any other large city (except, of course, similarly sprawling Dallas) can afford one of the 100,000+ 1950s ranches that encircle the downtown. 

 

 

 

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Why should I drive when a fighter jet is faster?

 

You guys crack me up somtimes. Would you take a fighter jet from The Banks to Music Hall?

 

Velocity is just one factor in the equation. Transit doesn't have to be faster to be competitive with other modes, but it helps.

 

"People drive to save time."

 

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Why should I drive when a fighter jet is faster?

 

You guys crack me up somtimes. Would you take a fighter jet from The Banks to Music Hall?

 

Velocity is just one factor in the equation. Transit doesn't have to be faster to be competitive with other modes, but it helps.

 

"People drive to save time."

 

I don't - I drive because its the only realistic option for getting somewhere around Cincinnati-Dayton.

 

When I'm in Washington DC, NYC or even Denver, I don't drive. Just the thought is laughable. I'll take the rail transit 100 times out of 100.

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It's amazing sometimes how random discussions on blogs like this can suddenly lead to awesome discoveries in blinding flashes of creative light, resulting in super solutions to tough problems that until that very moment never crossed anyone's mind - to wit:  The fighter-jet concept for getting around Cincinnati could be used to solve the streetcar problem in one fell swoop with some slight modifications - provide all Cincinnatians, young and old, with small back-pack-mounted personal jetskis so they can "teleport" themselves in an instant, above all traffic, from any part of Over-The-Rhine to downtown or downtown to uptown and the U. of Cincinnati and medical center in a mere fraction of the time - and expense - to ride on that antediluvian relic of a streetcar we're building!

 

Why, oh why, did this brilliant idea not occur to someone sooner? It's nothing short of a miracle that could yet save us from even more years of angst over a streetcar.

 

Perhaps it's still not too late to change course! Let's turn to Mayor Cranley and see if maybe he's got an idea or two how to implement a city-wide jetski program. After all, he does slightly resemble Flash Gordon!

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^ Although they don't have traditional use-based zoning, they still have lot line setbacks, parking minimums, floor area ratios, and pretty much everything else you find in a typical zoning code.

 

Also, they get around the lack of use-based zoning with restrictive covenants.  Basically, the developer will put what are effective use based zoning covenants in the deeds of all the lots they sell, ensuring the developments retain the intended character.  Because most people don't want to buy a house where their neighbor can become a fast food joint or a bank branch, no matter what they say about individual freedom.

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Houston is an absolutely insane place. Like LA, it has its own logic, but it has none of the good architecture, exotic landscapes, or excitement.  Its first light rail line has the highest per-mile ridership of any in-street light rail line, but these new branches are really testing the power of rail alone to turn around low-rent areas.

 

The other thing to remember about Houston is that it is basically Chicago Jr., and by that I mean that there is a certain geographic inevitability to the place that means its going to be a major city, particularly with modern technology.  It is the westernmost port in the U.S. on the Atlantic seaboard.  So if you've got railroad which make you less depedent on watercourses, and you can dredge Buffalo Bayou to accomodate Panamax container ships, your saving dramatically on shipping costs if you're trying to take something from Europe to the California, or natural resources from the Great Plains abroad.

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Streetcar pause costs still unknown; Cincinnati figuring out phase 1b costs

 

The officials running Cincinnati’s streetcar project still don’t know how much the December pause in the project ordered by the City Council will cost in terms of time and money.

 

Project executive John Deatrick said the key contractors – Messer Construction, Prus Construction and Delta Railroad – have submitted proposals, but the city is still reviewing them, asking for more documentation and negotiating.

 

The severe cold and high volume of snow may also impact the schedule, Deatrick told a meeting of council’s transportation committee.

 

“The auditors are going to be all over us from the FTA,” Deatrick said, referring to the Federal Transit Administration, which oversees the federal dollars used for the project.

 

Cont


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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I know this isn't Cincy Streetcar news, but I thought the following anecdote would be an interesting addition to the thread.  XUMelanie and I just closed on a second property on the streetcar line.  This time it is an 1880s brownstone condo with three bedrooms to accommodate our two kids (current condo has only two bedrooms).  We paid quite a hefty price knowing that we would be able to enjoy the improved transportation accessibility as well as amenities that are coming to the area in part due to the streetcar.  Had the streetcar project been cancelled we were planning on moving out of downtown/OTR.  It's impossible to know if the place we purchased would have sold for what we're paying for it, but my gut feeling is the property would have sold for less had the streetcar plan been put back on the shelf.  Now the city/county will be enjoying a bit more in property taxes.


"Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago." - Warren Buffett 

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Cranley says streetcar construction responsible for reduction of crime in OTR.

Cranley says that development such as the renovation of old St Paul’s Church at 1429 Race Street scares criminals away.

 

http://www.local12.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/cranley-says-street-car-construction-responsible-drop-crime-rates-overtherhine-9131.shtml#.UxpXMyi3kgM

 

it's worth pulling one quote from that article, "...but there may be more than that. Mayor John Cranley, a street car opponent, thinks it’s not about construction but about development with corporations investing millions of dollars into the development of the neighborhood."

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^ Another good quote:

"Cranley says when people start abandoning neighborhoods, criminals come in."

 

West siders could learn from that. Their problem stems from people moving out.

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Oh my goodness. I suggested this like 4 years ago. Hang on, I put the map I drew on Photobucket somewhere. Let me find it.

 

Here it is:

StreetcarBrewDist.jpg

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Thanks for the pic.

I've spent more time at the bus stop @ Clifton & Ohio than I care to think about. There's a few buildings around there that could be put out of their misery. It would be great to run the streetcar by Justin Jeffre's place too.

Be a shame to lose those steps, tho & it would kinda blight the church on McMicken I think.

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The pink building at center is the one that would likely have to be demolished:

streetcar-mulberry_zpsecbd0fa7.jpg

 

This is a major improvement over the current plan.  It will save capital and operating expenses, and chop several minutes off the streetcar route, especially the northbound streetcars.  There is already a traffic light on this hill for the school's crosswalk.  Not a big deal to add a second one to stop vehicular traffic when a streetcar is turning onto Vine St.

 

Thanks to John Schneider for publicizing this idea. 

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I like this modification as well.  One thing I've never understood though, is how the clifton route would interface with the CBD-OTR loop.  Does one train run the entire thing, or do passengers ride down from clifton and transfer onto the CBD-OTR loop at a stop?

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Wow Jimmy, how did you find that post?  I had to scour my Photobucket to find the map.  It really was 4 years ago.  Time sure does fly.

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Page 314 of this thread.  Wow, we write about this project a lot.

 

ProkNo5 gets credit then. I don't recall it. The engineers who helped me think through its feasibility say it needs to meet Vine higher on the hill than what's shown above  -- at Mulberry, almost taking a straight path north from the Race Street alignment but bending a little to the east. The underpass/cut would be about 800 feet long and will cost about $10 million. There's a fair amount of structure involved unless the city takes more property and lays back the slopes flanking the track. Avoids building 4,000 feet of track at $5,000 per foot. I'm sure the hillside steps can be integrated into the design.

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I do like that plan, it fixes my biggest gripe about the uptown loop.  If there's concerns about certain buildings needing to be demolished, or the logistics of a bridge/tunnel at the intersection with Ohio Avenue, I bet there's several slight adjustments that can be made to the alignment to let it work better. 

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Page 314 of this thread.  Wow, we write about this project a lot.

 

ProkNo5 gets credit then. I don't recall it. The engineers who helped me think through its feasibility say it needs to meet Vine higher on the hill than what's shown above  -- at Mulberry, almost taking a straight path north from the Race Street alignment but bending a little to the east. The underpass/cut would be about 800 feet long and will cost about $10 million. There's a fair amount of structure involved unless the city takes more property and lays back the slopes flanking the track. Avoids building 4,000 feet of track at $5,000 per foot. I'm sure the hillside steps can be integrated into the design.

 

Awe, thanks John.  I don't need credit, though pulling some strings to get me an internship at Metro would be great...  ;-)  I'm just glad that this alignment is finally being considered. That giant s-curve to get to Vine has always bothered me.  Thank you for publishing the idea. 

 

It's a shame though that the grade is too steep to take the route I drew as I'd hate to lose Robert A's Curve Cafe.  Still, if it means cutting that much off of travel time it's absolutely worth it. 

 

 

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Page 314 of this thread.  Wow, we write about this project a lot.

 

ProkNo5 gets credit then. I don't recall it. The engineers who helped me think through its feasibility say it needs to meet Vine higher on the hill than what's shown above  -- at Mulberry, almost taking a straight path north from the Race Street alignment but bending a little to the east. The underpass/cut would be about 800 feet long and will cost about $10 million. There's a fair amount of structure involved unless the city takes more property and lays back the slopes flanking the track. Avoids building 4,000 feet of track at $5,000 per foot. I'm sure the hillside steps can be integrated into the design.

 

Awe, thanks John.  I don't need credit, though pulling some strings to get me an internship at Metro would be great...  ;-)  I'm just glad that this alignment is finally being considered. That giant s-curve to get to Vine has always bothered me.  Thank you for publishing the idea. 

 

It's a shame though that the grade is too steep to take the route I drew as I'd hate to lose Robert A's Curve Cafe.  Still, if it means cutting that much off of travel time it's absolutely worth it. 

 

 

 

Why don't you contact Paul Grether, Metro's rail manager, and talk with him?

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Wow Jimmy, how did you find that post?  I had to scour my Photobucket to find the map.  It really was 4 years ago.  Time sure does fly.

 

It was easy after you did the hard part.  The map you posted today was called StreetcarBrewDist.jpg.  I assumed that you wouldn't have bothered to rename the file after posting it initially, so I used the forum search to look for that file name.  That pulled up pages 677 and 314 of this thread. 

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Are officials trying to get the Governor to change his mind? Have they traveled to Columbus lately?

 

Officials trying to change Ohio Governor's mind about WHAT, exactly?

 

There's no changing Kasich's mind.Lets put that to option to rest. 

 

We need Fitzgerald.  Even then it may not be enough because of all the gerrymandered tea party districts

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