Monthly Archives: August 2012

Are Forecasts Improving?

In response to my takedown of Reason, specifically my puzzlement at the estimates of inaccuracy in traffic forecasts, alert reader Morten Skou Nicolaisen sent me several papers on the subject. While there is past research about traffic shortfalls, for example … Continue reading

Posted in Construction Costs, Good/Interesting Studies, High-Speed Rail, Regional Rail, Studies, Transportation, Urban Transit | 15 Comments

Peak Factors and Intercity Trains

In contrast with Reason’s fraud, CARRD’s Elizabeth Alexis makes a more serious criticism of the XpressWest plan: there is a prominent peak in travel from Southern California to Las Vegas on Friday afternoon and Sunday afternoon, and this means that … Continue reading

Posted in High-Speed Rail, Regional Rail, Transportation, Urban Transit | 31 Comments

Reason Releases Fraudulent Report Criticizing XpressWest

In response to the forthcoming FRA loan application by XpressWest (the rebranded Desert Xpress) for its high-speed rail line from the edge of the Los Angeles metro area to Las Vegas, Reason published a report claiming the project would fail. … Continue reading

Posted in High-Speed Rail, Shoddy Studies, Studies, Transportation | 40 Comments

Are Larger Planes Feasible?

In my previous post, I showed how, in New York, high-speed rail can’t realistically be expected to reduce demand for travel much, and so to decongest its airspace something else is needed. The solutions are to reduce the number of … Continue reading

Posted in New York, Transportation | 75 Comments

High-Speed Rail’s Role in Decongesting Airports

One common argument for building HSR is that it will help decongest airports, by displacing high-volume short-distance flights. This can result in a permanent reduction in air travel, reducing environmental impact, or a diversion of capacity to longer-distance flights, or … Continue reading

Posted in High-Speed Rail, New York, Transportation | 67 Comments

Vancouver’s Busiest Buses

Translink has a list of performance metrics per bus route here. Those include ridership, boardings per revenue-hour, crowding measured as a percentage of available seats, and operating cost per unlinked trip. Since the numbers are only given per route, without … Continue reading

Posted in Transportation, Urban Transit, Vancouver | 21 Comments

HSR Routes: Triangles and Ys

This post partially responds to “The Altamont of X” comments made by Adirondacker, though it is far more general than that. Whenever a route has to connect three non-collinear cities, compromises must be made between cost and directness. The two … Continue reading

Posted in High-Speed Rail, New York, Transportation | 115 Comments

Connecting New Jersey to Manhattan, Redux

This post responds to arguments made by Brian in comments regarding how to connect New Jersey regional trains to Manhattan, in addition to the present tunnels to Penn Station; Brian argues for leveraging the Staten Island Railway, including the North … Continue reading

Posted in New York, Regional Rail, Transportation | 19 Comments

Quick Note: Vancouver’s Transit Revival

I’ve been looking for Canadian mode share numbers that are more recent than 2006; although there was a census in 2011, it apparently did not include such numbers. However, a separate survey regarding commuting was published a year ago, using … Continue reading

Posted in Good Transit, Transportation, Vancouver | 14 Comments

Low- and Medium-Hanging Fruit

The entire process I try to apply to cost-effective rail construction is to figure out the best places to spend money per unit of time saved. Obviously, this is mainly for intercity traffic – for local traffic it’s more interesting … Continue reading

Posted in Construction Costs, Good Transit, High-Speed Rail, Transportation | 20 Comments