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Author Topic: CRC Revival?  (Read 28530 times)

Hurricane Rex

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CRC Revival?
« on: September 09, 2018, 11:15:34 PM »

So, since this in two states, I can't post it in their respective boards, and I don't think this fits the subject of the "Ding Dong, the CRC is dead" thread.

This I found today: https://www.oregonlive.com/expo/news/erry-2018/09/1a8ca310b43996/washington-tries-to-woo-oregon.html
I wouldn't have posted it unless Oregon seemed interested. Thoughts?

Personally I see this as another chance to ressurect light rail into Vancouver which is why Oregon would be on it. If it can go through without some of the junk put in that jacked up the cost, I'd be happy. Just build a 10 lane bridge and adjust I-5's Portland's capacity to accommodate it.


I may have been a little too agressive in the comments. You have been warned.

Edit: adding second source:
https://portlandtribune.com/pt/9-news/405366-303274-business-leaders-push-for-i-5-bridge-replacement
« Last Edit: September 10, 2018, 06:50:41 PM by Bickendan »
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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2018, 01:27:45 AM »

I'm doubtful that Portland's freeway capacity could ever be expanded, so let's just go with a 6 GP+2 HOV bridge (all tolled) and a parallel light rail crossing. Bonus if the funding pot from Washington is limited to Clark County, since there's a lot of very pressing issues elsewhere that need state money.

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2018, 01:36:53 AM »

I remember people on the Oregon side balking at the CRC because it was presented as a '12 lane wide bridge', forgetting that that's what the Jackson Bridge is -- four of those lanes are the shoulders. (Jackson is 13, if you count the median bike lanes).

With that said, if the planners actually meant 12 lanes plus shoulders, yeah, that's a bit much, especially since I-5 can't support that on either side of the Columbia; at most, 10 would work, being as they'd be auxiliary lanes.
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Hurricane Rex

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2018, 02:39:53 AM »

With the current plans for I-5, 10 lanes is the absolute max, 8 is reccomended (from me) with room to expand to 10 later on (extra wide shoulders).

What isn't mentioned is the mayor forgetting (I understand the current mayor is new but still) that Vancouver blocked the East County Crossing despite being approved by voters and now they complain about congestion on I-5/I-205/SR 14. That crossing would've helped out the latter 2 (mainly SR 14, indirectly some of I-205).

LG-TP260

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The Ghostbuster

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2018, 05:19:18 PM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.
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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2018, 06:46:21 PM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

nexus73

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2018, 10:06:49 PM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

Exactamundo Bruce!  The snarl will be moved back from the Interstate Bridge to I-5/I-84 and I-5/I-405.  Until the progressives against progress are willing to pony up for a complete redo of the PDX freeway system to make it more akin to what I saw on the Wasatch Front where traffic flowed at 70 MPH on a busy day, the Rose City will suffer from congestion until the end of the world. 

Rick
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Bruce

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2018, 10:12:59 PM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

Exactamundo Bruce!  The snarl will be moved back from the Interstate Bridge to I-5/I-84 and I-5/I-405.  Until the progressives against progress are willing to pony up for a complete redo of the PDX freeway system to make it more akin to what I saw on the Wasatch Front where traffic flowed at 70 MPH on a busy day, the Rose City will suffer from congestion until the end of the world. 

Rick

The Salt Lake City metro has half the population and is much more spread out. It's definitely been proven that you can't build more lanes in general to relieve congestion...you have to build alternatives. Light rail is one, as is better land use within Portland proper.

Plutonic Panda

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2018, 12:43:16 AM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

Exactamundo Bruce!  The snarl will be moved back from the Interstate Bridge to I-5/I-84 and I-5/I-405.  Until the progressives against progress are willing to pony up for a complete redo of the PDX freeway system to make it more akin to what I saw on the Wasatch Front where traffic flowed at 70 MPH on a busy day, the Rose City will suffer from congestion until the end of the world. 

Rick

The Salt Lake City metro has half the population and is much more spread out. It's definitely been proven that you can't build more lanes in general to relieve congestion...you have to build alternatives. Light rail is one, as is better land use within Portland proper.
If the build enough lanes basic math will prove it will improve traffic flow. But yes, a transit connection is a must. Would be nice to see a step further and see ROW for HSR or hyperloop.

Admittedly, Iím not familiar with this area but have spent the better part of the past hour looking at this issue and the bridges history, it definitely needs to be replaced. 12 lanes would ideal, 10 lanes minimum, but someone has to compromise and even 8 would be better than nothing if it means lives could potentially be saved with a new structure that could withstand earthquake.
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Bruce

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2018, 01:28:37 AM »

If the build enough lanes basic math will prove it will improve traffic flow. But yes, a transit connection is a must. Would be nice to see a step further and see ROW for HSR or hyperloop.

Admittedly, Iím not familiar with this area but have spent the better part of the past hour looking at this issue and the bridges history, it definitely needs to be replaced. 12 lanes would ideal, 10 lanes minimum, but someone has to compromise and even 8 would be better than nothing if it means lives could potentially be saved with a new structure that could withstand earthquake.

It's more than just simple math. HSR would be a nice inclusion, as there are active studies on the Portland-Seattle-Vancouver BC corridor, but it would likely require a different crossing entirely (perhaps an upgrade to the existing BNSF bridge). Hyperloop is a non-starter.

8 lanes would be plenty (especially if the extra lanes are HOV 3+ until the light rail component is completed). Financing will be a problem, since the Washington legislature doesn't have a new transportation package they could sneak this in...so the bridge will be all alone and subject to intense politicking.

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2018, 01:46:49 AM »

If the build enough lanes basic math will prove it will improve traffic flow. But yes, a transit connection is a must. Would be nice to see a step further and see ROW for HSR or hyperloop.

Admittedly, Iím not familiar with this area but have spent the better part of the past hour looking at this issue and the bridges history, it definitely needs to be replaced. 12 lanes would ideal, 10 lanes minimum, but someone has to compromise and even 8 would be better than nothing if it means lives could potentially be saved with a new structure that could withstand earthquake.

It's more than just simple math. HSR would be a nice inclusion, as there are active studies on the Portland-Seattle-Vancouver BC corridor, but it would likely require a different crossing entirely (perhaps an upgrade to the existing BNSF bridge). Hyperloop is a non-starter.

8 lanes would be plenty (especially if the extra lanes are HOV 3+ until the light rail component is completed). Financing will be a problem, since the Washington legislature doesn't have a new transportation package they could sneak this in...so the bridge will be all alone and subject to intense politicking.

I would absolutely agree with you there. Light rail would be a nice addition to the bridge, but I'm skeptical about getting the ROW for HRS on the same bridge.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2018, 01:59:20 AM »

If the build enough lanes basic math will prove it will improve traffic flow. But yes, a transit connection is a must. Would be nice to see a step further and see ROW for HSR or hyperloop.

Admittedly, Iím not familiar with this area but have spent the better part of the past hour looking at this issue and the bridges history, it definitely needs to be replaced. 12 lanes would ideal, 10 lanes minimum, but someone has to compromise and even 8 would be better than nothing if it means lives could potentially be saved with a new structure that could withstand earthquake.

It's more than just simple math. HSR would be a nice inclusion, as there are active studies on the Portland-Seattle-Vancouver BC corridor, but it would likely require a different crossing entirely (perhaps an upgrade to the existing BNSF bridge). Hyperloop is a non-starter.

8 lanes would be plenty (especially if the extra lanes are HOV 3+ until the light rail component is completed). Financing will be a problem, since the Washington legislature doesn't have a new transportation package they could sneak this in...so the bridge will be all alone and subject to intense politicking.
The wording in the article sounded as if Washington was becoming more committed to including light rail in the project.

As for HSR from Portland to Vancouver, I hope those plans and the group behind it are strong enough to get some kind of attempt in this bridge. If not, a new bridge could be built, but having more ready infrastructure is better.

I do get that hyperloop isnít happening anytime soon. Which to me is a shame because I wish weíd take chances on technology that could prove to be the future. Of course thereís the risk it could flop, but who knows. Either way, we both agree it isnít happening.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2018, 02:02:49 AM by Plutonic Panda »
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Bruce

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2018, 02:20:39 AM »

I'm not too fond of unproven, decades-old vaporware that is getting championed now by a certain worker-exploiting, libel-triggering car company CEO.

The Washington legislature would probably go for light rail, but the hold-up is the more conservative Clark County government. They'll be sure to howl and scream about "crime trains" (despite this racial dogwhistle having no factual basis) and high costs that they won't even have to bear, but eventually they'll give.

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2018, 10:23:01 AM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

Exactamundo Bruce!  The snarl will be moved back from the Interstate Bridge to I-5/I-84 and I-5/I-405.  Until the progressives against progress are willing to pony up for a complete redo of the PDX freeway system to make it more akin to what I saw on the Wasatch Front where traffic flowed at 70 MPH on a busy day, the Rose City will suffer from congestion until the end of the world. 

Rick

The Salt Lake City metro has half the population and is much more spread out. It's definitely been proven that you can't build more lanes in general to relieve congestion...you have to build alternatives. Light rail is one, as is better land use within Portland proper.

The Wasatch Front represents the seventh most urbanized area in America.  It is akin to Seattle in being a thin N/S oriented area, flanked by mountains to the east with lakes and desert to the west.  I-15 gets one heck of a load placed upon it!  Unlike SoCal, an extensive spread out network of freeways will not be doable. 

A major light rail transit system is being built and figured to run from south Utah County to Ogden as I recall.  There's you complementing public transit to go with the already present bus system.  Utahns like to build things, more so than Oregonians sad to say.

Anyways, many more lanes and freeways are needed to bring PDX up to snuff.  'nuff said!

Rick
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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2018, 10:41:18 AM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

Exactamundo Bruce!  The snarl will be moved back from the Interstate Bridge to I-5/I-84 and I-5/I-405.  Until the progressives against progress are willing to pony up for a complete redo of the PDX freeway system to make it more akin to what I saw on the Wasatch Front where traffic flowed at 70 MPH on a busy day, the Rose City will suffer from congestion until the end of the world. 

Rick

The Salt Lake City metro has half the population and is much more spread out. It's definitely been proven that you can't build more lanes in general to relieve congestion...you have to build alternatives. Light rail is one, as is better land use within Portland proper.
The idea that alternatives can relieve highway congestion is definitely not proven.  Alternatives can complement highways, but they do not replace them in economically healthy areas.

All my electives in graduate school were in regional planning.  The mantra that transit can relieve congestion was more dogma than based upon good science.

Therefore, the idea that we should build alternatives to relieve congestion INSTEAD of increasing highway capacity is not well-founded.

That said, I am in favor of building BOTH as a two-pronged solution to congestion.

(Sorry for the capitals, but I am on Tapatalk and formatting is limited).
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bookem

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2018, 01:18:19 PM »

A span in the neighborhood of 8-10 lanes works for me. It's a shame the bridge wasn't replaced decades ago - I could never see the point of having a draw span on an Interstate corridor. Plus, there's that whole pesky earthquake issue.

And, yes, the new span should accommodate some sort of HCT, considering Portland and Vancouver are the top two most populous cities in the lower Columbia region. I do see Vancouver proper becoming more amenable to light rail, especially in light of the high-density waterfront development going in on their side of the Columbia.
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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2018, 02:18:03 PM »

A few bits of context that are important to remember Ė

  • A substantial portion of the CRC's cost was rebuilding the I-5 / SR 14 / SR 501 interchanges in Vancouver. You couldn't just build a new bridge without also building the Washington-side tie-ins.
  • Similarly, but less substantial: The connections to the Port of Portland, which continues to be an economic driver despite its inland location.
  • The thing about the MAX is it was relatively low cost because of a 50-50 federal match. So, sure, it cost $500 or so million Ė but that meant the feds would kick in another $500 million to the project, essentially paying for the bridge itself.
  • As has been discussed before, a lot of the "third bridge" options are pretty impractical. Adding a bridge from Camas south to Gresham would just feed the 84 bottleneck at 205 Ė which is already substantial in the afternoons. A western bridge would either connect across the Columbia but not the Willamette, or have to cross all the way up at St. Helens so as to avoid Sauvie Island. Either way, if you go west of I-5, you have to cross the Willamette, the West Hills or both.
  • I always thought the least impractical "third bridge" idea was something running roughly southeast from Washougal to I-84, diverting pass-through traffic onto SR 14 without being an efficient/practical commuter route that would just shift the bottlenecks.
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Bruce

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2018, 05:08:35 PM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

Exactamundo Bruce!  The snarl will be moved back from the Interstate Bridge to I-5/I-84 and I-5/I-405.  Until the progressives against progress are willing to pony up for a complete redo of the PDX freeway system to make it more akin to what I saw on the Wasatch Front where traffic flowed at 70 MPH on a busy day, the Rose City will suffer from congestion until the end of the world. 

Rick

The Salt Lake City metro has half the population and is much more spread out. It's definitely been proven that you can't build more lanes in general to relieve congestion...you have to build alternatives. Light rail is one, as is better land use within Portland proper.
The idea that alternatives can relieve highway congestion is definitely not proven.  Alternatives can complement highways, but they do not replace them in economically healthy areas.

All my electives in graduate school were in regional planning.  The mantra that transit can relieve congestion was more dogma than based upon good science.

Therefore, the idea that we should build alternatives to relieve congestion INSTEAD of increasing highway capacity is not well-founded.

That said, I am in favor of building BOTH as a two-pronged solution to congestion.

(Sorry for the capitals, but I am on Tapatalk and formatting is limited).

Sure, but the impacts of freeway expansion are disproportionately worse than transit expansion. Air pollution, land takings, noise pollution, mental health impacts, childhood asthma, neighborhood disconnectivity...all linked with freeway expansion.

I should have clarified that transit expansion is about siphoning off existing and future demand from freeways, not relieving them. It would be impossible to accommodate all of the drivers on I-5 with light rail expansion (let alone the needed park-and-ride facilities). What it can do, however, is influence land use to encourage car-free or car-light lifestyles for new arrivals or intra-urban emigrants, especially when it comes to denser housing (which also helps with the West Coast's severe housing supply crisis). We've committed to this in Seattle and while the number of employers and people in Seattle have increased, traffic volumes have not increased at the same rate...in fact, drive-alone and carpooling rates have decreased while transit ridership is way up.

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2018, 08:48:28 PM »

Given my experience in the planning arena, I remain skeptical of the size of the claimed benefits compared to the cost.  I am sure that Seattle is seeing transit use go up, but I question if that has had a significant effect on congestion on Seattle's still notoriously congested highways.
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Hurricane Rex

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2018, 09:17:59 PM »

I hope the CRC is rebuilt with additional lanes, as well as full shoulders. As for the light rail element, they can take it and dump it at the bottom of the Columbia River. It would be more useful down there.

Yes, then we can have a new bottleneck in a new location while thousands of bus commuters are stuck trying to get to the nearest MAX station. A very short extension to the already robust MAX network is a no-brainer.

Exactamundo Bruce!  The snarl will be moved back from the Interstate Bridge to I-5/I-84 and I-5/I-405.  Until the progressives against progress are willing to pony up for a complete redo of the PDX freeway system to make it more akin to what I saw on the Wasatch Front where traffic flowed at 70 MPH on a busy day, the Rose City will suffer from congestion until the end of the world. 

Rick

The Salt Lake City metro has half the population and is much more spread out. It's definitely been proven that you can't build more lanes in general to relieve congestion...you have to build alternatives. Light rail is one, as is better land use within Portland proper.
The idea that alternatives can relieve highway congestion is definitely not proven.  Alternatives can complement highways, but they do not replace them in economically healthy areas.

All my electives in graduate school were in regional planning.  The mantra that transit can relieve congestion was more dogma than based upon good science.

Therefore, the idea that we should build alternatives to relieve congestion INSTEAD of increasing highway capacity is not well-founded.

That said, I am in favor of building BOTH as a two-pronged solution to congestion.

(Sorry for the capitals, but I am on Tapatalk and formatting is limited).

Sure, but the impacts of freeway expansion are disproportionately worse than transit expansion. Air pollution, land takings, noise pollution, mental health impacts, childhood asthma, neighborhood disconnectivity...all linked with freeway expansion.

I should have clarified that transit expansion is about siphoning off existing and future demand from freeways, not relieving them. It would be impossible to accommodate all of the drivers on I-5 with light rail expansion (let alone the needed park-and-ride facilities). What it can do, however, is influence land use to encourage car-free or car-light lifestyles for new arrivals or intra-urban emigrants, especially when it comes to denser housing (which also helps with the West Coast's severe housing supply crisis). We've committed to this in Seattle and while the number of employers and people in Seattle have increased, traffic volumes have not increased at the same rate...in fact, drive-alone and carpooling rates have decreased while transit ridership is way up.

Unfortunatly, Portland transit ridership is down if you look at % of population, and the increased air pollution is BS, as the congestion is causing idle cars, which increases the air pollution due to cars not running at their max efficiency vs time (about 55-60 mph), and the childhood asthma and health impacts. Land use and disconnected neighborhoods I can agree on, but only marginally, as there is still ROW available on about 70% of Portland freeways to expand. If you want to see an example of that, my fictional tier 1 transportation package has expansion, but is careful on land use, except on the Westside bypass/I-605. It is posted on my fictional Oregon plans thread.

Do I think light rail should be expanded? Within reason, as I disagreed with building the Tilikum crossing for transit/pedestrian use only, but likes all the previous lines. Do they have flaws, too many, especially Max in downtown Portland, and 55 mph limit when the cars are designed for 65. The bridgeport line I have trouble getting on board with as planned, due to the Barbur road diet, low projected ridership (15% according to a KGW viewer poll would use it often, another 15% possibly), and due to the top 2, the Tigard buisness displacements. Would I like a line there? Yes, but it shouldn't be prioritized over badly needed expansion.

On Seattle: I like the balance they are having right now and they are planning thier light rail lines well (with the exception of removing the I-90 express lanes).

Edit: The effectiveness of light rail goes down as density gets thinner as well, making a line past Bridgeport near useless ubless its a high speed line. This is also why I'm opposed to light rail in the outer suburbs. A Washington Square line though would be nice, maybe connect Bridgeport to Beaveron Town Center with a diversion to Washington Square? Now I don't know how that would be done.

Also another problem is Portland's downtown hub light rail system which doesn't provide the best efficiency IMO. Many potential riders confessed they don't ride it due to people not needing to go downtown. Bus is similar but better laid out.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2018, 09:31:28 PM by Hurricane Rex »
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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2018, 10:55:50 PM »

Idling cars would produce less air pollution compared to a freeway expansion, which would encourage more people to drive (under the law of induced demand, which is well documented) and thus put more cars on the road. http://cityobservatory.org/urban-myth-busting_idling_carbon/

Yes, Portland's rail system is a bit of an under-built mess, but it makes sense to funnel Clark County's commuter traffic onto a trunk line. The bridge is already a chokepoint and simple moving that funnel to a light rail station is fairly simple and would be a huge boon for transit ridership.

Off-topic, but why do you oppose the replacement of I-90's express lanes with light rail tracks? It was part of the original 1976 plan and the project resulted in a net gain of bi-directional HOV lanes (which were needed, as Bellevue is now a large enough job center for Seattle residents). The only people I see who are still complaining are the rich snobs on Mercer Island who lost their SOV privileges for the lane.

Rothman

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #21 on: September 12, 2018, 12:10:29 AM »

If induced demand is so proven, then every highway would be congested.  That is simply not the case and the idea of building capacity just automatically leading to congestion is one of those overly simplistic mantras of planning practitioners that belies the multiple variables that do cause congestion.
 
Regarding transit and land use and how somehow dense development is desirable, planners also seem to forget that families with children in America prefer yard to living over a store and that single people would rather not share a wall with a family with small kids. :D
« Last Edit: September 12, 2018, 12:13:48 AM by Rothman »
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Hurricane Rex

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #22 on: September 12, 2018, 01:59:15 AM »

I didn't know the I-90 express lanes were supposed to be replaced in the original plans. Since that is the case, I'm no longer opposed to it.

LG-TP260

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Plutonic Panda

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #23 on: September 12, 2018, 04:14:07 AM »

From what Iíve read transit ridership is down in nearly every city in the US. Not sure about other cities outside of the US.

Induced demand is just such a shitty excuse to not expand infrastructure. Not to mention itís studies in which supposedly proved it exists(which is debatable or at least to a certain extent), leave out so many variables which should be included.

Then thereís the basic fact that has already been pointed out here, there are so many freeways that arenít clogged with traffic which defy the Ďprovení induced demand theory.
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MantyMadTown

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Re: CRC Revival?
« Reply #24 on: September 12, 2018, 04:39:01 PM »

Regarding transit and land use and how somehow dense development is desirable, planners also seem to forget that families with children in America prefer yard to living over a store and that single people would rather not share a wall with a family with small kids. :D

What are we supposed to do? Increase urban sprawl? That's just going to make more people dependent on cars and make traffic congestion worse.

Personally I would use infill to solve this problem and if people want more single-family homes we can fill land in already-existing suburbs instead of building outwards. That way we can increase density while also providing for families who want backyards. And accommodate transit in those areas, of course! :D
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