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Christof Spieler presentation on METRO & Mobility for 9/2012 Houston Economic Summit

Christof Spieler presentation on METRO & Mobility for 9/2012 Houston Economic Summit

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  • http://www.cnt.org/repository/pwpf.pdf
  • And new technology has other problems, too. You don’t want to be the first to try something out. The Las Vegas monorail was behind schedule, above budget, and it was shut down twice after it opened, once because pieces were falling off and landing on the sidewalk below. It’s working now, and it carries 23,000 trips a day…
  • ...but then so 1940s streetcars in San Francisco. Spot me one modern invention – air conditioning – and I can build you a quite functional transit system using 1880s technology.
  • The Main Street line takes 30 minutes to travel 7.5 miles: the trains only go 35mph. That sounds slow, but it’s not top speed that matters. It’s the overall tiemopf the tirp.
  • Let’s quantify that: a three mile train ride with a quarter mile walk at either end. With a top speed of 35mph – a light rail train running down a city street – that’s a 19 minute trip.
  • But 35 is slow, right? What happens if we go up to 60? Well, that makes the train part of the trip a bit shorter. But to go faster we had to put our train somewhere else – an abandoned railroad line, a freeway. But it’s unlikely that is going to be in the same place I want to go to. So my five minute walk at the end becomes a 10-minue walk, and the trip actually takes longer than before.
  • OR we can try to speed things up by having fewer stations. That actually speeds up the train trip more than a higher speed does. But once again I walk more, and the overall trip is longer.
  • As with any process, it was critical to choose a place to begin. In this case, the place to begin was obvious: the Westheimer Corridor, the corridor with the highest average daily ridership and the most complex route structure. In FY2005, METRO had 2 routes with 6 branches and different days of operation in this corridor. Through a 4-step process over 3 years, METRO converted this corridor from 2 routes with 6 branches and different days to 3 routes with 0 branches operating 7 days.
  • The goal of this effort was to improve customer service. Did we succeed? One of the best measurements of success in providing improved customer service is ridership. And in this case ridership in the Westheimer Corridor grew by 19.5% between FY2005 and FY2008.
  • And passenger information needs to be coordinated, too: one website with all the transit info for the whole area.
  • But transferring is not just about the physical connection. It’s about the fares as well. They do that well in Europe, too, and badly in the Bay Area. Caltrain uses one ticket, Muni uses another, BART uses a third. One trip might involve three different ticket vending machines. But in London one pass works on all train, underground, and bus.
  • But here’s the kicker: the Houston line is way more effective. It carries 2/3 as many trips for only 1/5 the cost.
  • New office towers: Hess (AKA Discovery) (2010), MainPlace (2010), 1000 Main (2003), Calpine (2003), 5 Houston Center (2002), Chevron (was Enron) (2002)
  • A good example: San Francisco vs. Washington. Two systems, started around the same time, built with the same technology, and with the same length of track. But DC’s system carries twice as many riders.
  • This is a functional light rail line. But would you want to walk here?
  • This is more like it, right? Every transit project should try to improve the pedestrian environment.
  • …and it has dozens.
  • So how do you get this stuff right? You involve the public. Not just to meet legal requirements, but because it will make for better transit.

Transcript

  • 1. Christof SpielerMETRO Board Member
  • 2. Green Transit:tools for planners,leaders and citizens
  • 3. WHY DOESTRANSIT MATTER?
  • 4. Transit is energy-efficient passenger-miles per gallon single occupant car bus with 40 passengers 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180
  • 5. Transit uses less land
  • 6. Transit encourageswalking and biking
  • 7. Transit saves families moneyPenny wise, pound foolish, CNT, March 2010
  • 8. Transit supportseconomic vitality
  • 9. Transit makes lives easier
  • 10. SO HOW DO WE BUILDEFFECTIVE TRANSIT?
  • 11. Effective transit is not aboutchoosing a technology.
  • 12. Las Vegas Monorail23,000 boardings a day
  • 13. San Francisco “F” line23,000 boardings a day
  • 14. Good serviceIn the right places
  • 15. Good service meanscompetitive trip times
  • 16. 5. Time, not speed 18 min.30 min.
  • 17. Travel time, Downtown to TMCsubway walk waitlight rail leave garage trip enter garage car walk 0 10 20 30 Travel times from Google
  • 18. ¼ mile walk = 5 min. ¼ mile walk = 5 min. 3 mile train ride, top speed 35 mph = 8.5 min 18.5 minutes
  • 19. ¼ mile walk = 5 min. ¼ mile walk = 5 min. 3 mile train ride, top speed 35 mph = 8.5 min 18.5 minutes¼ mile walk = 5 min. ½ mile walk = 10 min. 3 mile train ride, top speed 60 mph = 7 min 22 minutes
  • 20. ¼ mile walk = 5 min. ¼ mile walk = 5 min. 3 mile train ride, top speed 35 mph = 8.5 min 18.5 minutes¼ mile walk = 5 min. ½ mile walk = 10 min. 3 mile train ride, top speed 60 mph = 7 min 22 minutes ½ mile walk = 10 min.¼ mile walk = 5 min. 3 mile train ride, top speed 35 mph = 6 min 21 minutes
  • 21. Good service meansreliable trip times
  • 22. Houston: Local bus in mixed traffic
  • 23. Houston: Park and Ride bus in HOV lane
  • 24. Houston: Light rail in dedicated lane
  • 25. Light RailPark and Ride Bus on time late Local Bus 0 20 40 60 80 100
  • 26. Park & Ride: choice transit Transit use for Downtown workers by commute distance706050403020100 0-1 1-5 5-10 10-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-59 60-69 over 70 miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles Downtown Houston Commute Survey Report, Central Houston, Inc., August 2009
  • 27. Good service meanshigh frequency
  • 28. Washington Metrorail
  • 29. Commuter rail networks(to scale)
  • 30. Commuter rail networks(to scale, with train frequency)
  • 31. Commuter rail networks(to scale, with ridership)
  • 32. Portland: frequent service system
  • 33. Good service meanssimple routes
  • 34. Houston: typical bus network
  • 35. Toronto: grid network
  • 36. Westheimer Street, Houston before:2 Routes, 6 Branches, Different Days of Operation 37
  • 37. Westheimer Street, Houston after:3 Routes, 0 Branches, 7 Days of OperationRidership +19.5% 38
  • 38. Good service meanscustomer information
  • 39. Portland: clear destination information
  • 40. Portland: Next Bus information
  • 41. Trip planner Google Transit
  • 42. Portland: display at the airport
  • 43. Good service meanseasy transfers
  • 44. Houston: TMC Transit Center
  • 45. London: weekly travelcard
  • 46. Good serviceIn the right places
  • 47. Houston: 7.5 miles
  • 48. Dallas: 72 miles
  • 49. LengthHouston 7.5 mi Dallas 72 mi CostHouston $320m Dallas $3,800m RidershipHouston 35,700 / weekday Dallas 76,800 / weekday
  • 50. The right places meansconnecting centers
  • 51. Employment center (Boston Back Bay)Transit (MBTA heavy rail and commuter rail)
  • 52. TMCTexas Medical Center, Houston14 hospitals with 6,800 beds9 universities with 71,500 students93,500 employees
  • 53. DowntownDowntown Houston140,000 employees11 fortune 500 companiesMost theatre seats in US outside New YorkBaseball, Basketball, Soccer
  • 54. 256,000 jobs within½ mile of 5 rail lines
  • 55. Energy Corridor 2% transit use Downtown Uptown 37% transit use 7% transit use Medical Center 28% transit useWestchase7% transit use Greenway 5% transit use
  • 56. 6 new office towers inDowntown Houston sincelight rail construction began
  • 57. The right places meansmultiple uses
  • 58. ¾ of trips are not home-to-work Nancy McGuckin and Nanda Srinivasan, 2005
  • 59. Home Work Lunch Work Dinner StoreHome
  • 60. The right places meansserving density
  • 61. BART: 104 miles, 370,200 weekday ridersWMATA: 106 miles, 1,023,500 weekday riders
  • 62. The right places meansstations in the center
  • 63. richmondrail.org Houston: University Line freeway elevated option Houston: University Line arterial at grade optionMETRO
  • 64. freeway elevated option
  • 65. freeway elevated option
  • 66. arterial at grade option
  • 67. freeway elevated optionarterial at grade option: 40% more ridership
  • 68. Houston: planned light rail Downtown Greenway Uptown UH TMC
  • 69. The right places meansa good pedestrianenvironment
  • 70. Houston: Midtown
  • 71. San Diego: Commercial Street
  • 72. Portland: Pioneer Square
  • 73. Good serviceIn the right places
  • 74. WHAT DOES IT TAKE TOMAKE THIS HAPPEN?
  • 75. Barrier: interagency cooperation
  • 76. Developer ArchitectZoningcommissioner Public Traffic engineer services administrator Transit Public works planner engineer Ped-bike coordinator
  • 77. Houston
  • 78. Christof Spielerchristof.spieler@ridemetro.org