Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Take the Bus!

P-Mac lays it out, with research and eloquence--enhancing the bus system is simply better than ChooChoos, whether electric or not.

It comes down to asking what the point of transit is. In Utt's view, "It's a cost-effective way of moving someone from A to B. That's all it is."

...the trend in transit appears to be heading not toward more light rail -- as Dennis Hinebaugh of the National Center for Transit Research points out, a lot of the energy now is in running buses in a way that mimics the best attributes of trains -- at a fraction of the cost.

There ARE ways to make 'the bus' more attractive:

...the express buses in Kansas City don't do everything they should -- they don't have off-bus ticketing, the way a subway would, and the way the best bus rapid transit systems do -- they are hitting a lot of the elements, with marketing, with GPS systems that let clocks at stations tell riders how soon until the next bus, with frequent and easy-to-understand service.

Almost like...(gasp) Private Industry!

Pat McIlheran may, single-handedly, make the case for better buses the dominant--and winning--brief.

Let's hope so.

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