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Author Topic: WA: Judge tosses speeding ticket because speed limit signs are too wordy  (Read 3225 times)

jakeroot

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Re: WA: Judge tosses speeding ticket because speed limit signs are too wordy
« Reply #50 on: August 18, 2017, 01:34:14 PM »

Stutter-step wouldn't work in Portland because their city blocks cannot accommodate trains that long. The stutter-step system might work for heavy-rail metro systems, like the Bay Area's BART or Vancouver's Skytrain, where you can more cheaply acquire "passenger" car-sets that don't have driver accomodation. But Portland and Seattle use the more traditional light rail setup of having each car have a driver seat on either end. This means that every car you buy has driver accommodation, so there's no advantage in linking the cars together -- you may as well just run more trains with higher frequency.

This is hardly the most efficient setup (you can't walk between cars, for one). But it's the card we dealt ourselves, so we have to deal with it now. Portland is screwed with its downtown core limiting its train size, so they'll always have two-car trains. But I've heard rumblings that Sound Transit (Seattle's metro operator) may consider more traditional metro setups with traversable cars. But no official word just yet.
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sparker

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Re: WA: Judge tosses speeding ticket because speed limit signs are too wordy
« Reply #51 on: August 18, 2017, 06:56:22 PM »

Stutter-step wouldn't work in Portland because their city blocks cannot accommodate trains that long. The stutter-step system might work for heavy-rail metro systems, like the Bay Area's BART or Vancouver's Skytrain, where you can more cheaply acquire "passenger" car-sets that don't have driver accomodation. But Portland and Seattle use the more traditional light rail setup of having each car have a driver seat on either end. This means that every car you buy has driver accommodation, so there's no advantage in linking the cars together -- you may as well just run more trains with higher frequency.

This is hardly the most efficient setup (you can't walk between cars, for one). But it's the card we dealt ourselves, so we have to deal with it now. Portland is screwed with its downtown core limiting its train size, so they'll always have two-car trains. But I've heard rumblings that Sound Transit (Seattle's metro operator) may consider more traditional metro setups with traversable cars. But no official word just yet.

Yeah -- I forgot how short some of downtown Portland's city blocks actually are!  Seems to be the one place where the trolley format functions more efficiently than standard LR!   It's likely the reluctance to deploy multiple trains of 2 cars per is largely due to the aggregate cost of additional train operators being on the clock; much of LR's purported efficiency is the ability to move large numbers of commuters with minimal labor costs (albeit with heavy up-front capital costs!).  That's often touted when bus-versus-LR discussions are taking place, with LR's appeal lying in the potential for long-term savings, regardless of short-term track and equipment outlays.  When L.A.'s LR/subway system was being formulated, the equivalency was a 4-car (2 x 2) LR train could accommodate the passenger load of 6-7 standard buses or 4-5 articulated buses; it was the cost of one operator versus 4 to 7 for the equivalent capacity buses that sold Metro on the concept. 

That being said, after the initial L.A. LR lines were deployed, the concept itself came under fire from both the bus drivers' union and an ad hoc activist grouping centered in south-central Los Angeles advocating for lower-income transit users (they labeled themselves the "Bus Riders Union").  They claimed that the new-found regional emphasis on LR was advantageous primarily to longer-distance commuters (the original line, passing through South Central, connected downtown L.A. with Long Beach) but gave short shrift to the areas through which it traveled (echoes of the original '60's/'70's arguments against urban freeways).  A class-action suit was filed, with the outcome being that bus service increases (more grid-pattern bus routes at closer frequencies) in that area were court-ordered; furthermore, MTA was required to purchase 532 new buses -- and hire over 200 new bus drivers -- to satisfy the new service requirements (a "side" complaint addressed within the suit was that older buses were often deployed in lower-income areas, with greater incidents of breakdown as well as increased particle pollution -- hence the large ordered number of new units).  But what MTA did -- and well within the language of the law -- was to funnel many of the new routes to the LR stations in the area, so residents had to use LR to go to downtown or south to the coastal areas.  The north-south bus routes, which were largely in place prior to the court order (L.A.'s grid pattern is rectangular, with the larger distances between blocks on the E-W axis; there were and are relatively few through N-S streets) were quite inefficient, stopping every few blocks; a trip downtown (8-11 miles) often took 45 minutes to an hour -- whereas with LR, once on the train it was about 10-15 minutes to Washington Blvd. just south of downtown, where the line "jogged" west for a couple of miles before turning north and going underground into the subway; one could access several downtown shuttles along that E-W stretch. 

Portland -- or Seattle for that matter -- doesn't have the 25-odd radial miles of dense urban development that L.A. has; their systems were developed in proportion to what was "on the ground" in both venues.  To that end, Portland's density dissipates into spread-out housing by the time I-205 is reached eastward -- or anything beyond the west hills (e.g. Beaverton, Hillsboro).  It was probably decided early on that 2-car trains were sufficient to address the projected ridership, whereas with Seattle, bounded as it is by water, displays considerably more density, particularly with the core area arrayed on a N-S axis between the water boundaries; the planning there was for longer trains to more efficiently serve those regional characteristics.                               
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Soucinyu

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Re: WA: Judge tosses speeding ticket because speed limit signs are too wordy
« Reply #52 on: August 19, 2017, 08:07:48 PM »

20mph is insanely slow, but really safe imo for residential areas. In Fircrest coming in from i5 to University Place that road is so slow adding in the red lights.
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jakeroot

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Re: WA: Judge tosses speeding ticket because speed limit signs are too wordy
« Reply #53 on: August 20, 2017, 12:12:54 AM »

20mph is insanely slow, but really safe imo for residential areas. In Fircrest coming in from i5 to University Place that road is so slow adding in the red lights.

Which road are we talking about?

Going to UP from I-5, you'd use either 16 towards Fircrest (using Regents Blvd), 16 towards Jackson Blvd (then south), or South 56 St. Either way, there's no straight shot from I-5 to UP via Fircrest without using 16.

I seem to recall that Regents Blvd from Orchard towards UP is pretty slow. Maybe that's what you're talking about? You don't get to it via I-5, though. You'd use 16.
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