Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

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mattaudio
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby mattaudio » September 6th, 2016, 2:18 pm

I've always wondered: What about LRT/whatev from St. Paul to Maplewood Mall, connecting with local buses from WBL (and Stillwater?) which then turn into Freeway BRT down Hwy 36 to Minneapolis... Seems like it would give the most connectivity to the most destinations from the most walkable locations.

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Tiller
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tiller » September 6th, 2016, 2:36 pm

aBRT seems like the best bet with current conditions, though I'm curious to see how this is impacted by politics and Riverview.

Riverview's performance is going to be better than this, though by how much is an open question. It would be nice if it's enough to carry this corridor with it, but I won't hold my breath.

Additionally the CTIB had said they'd fund 80% of Riverview. If we get a transit funding increase and/or a smaller share is needed to secure federal funding for Riverview, some funds could be shifted over to this corridor (if there's support for the CTIB paying a larger share for Rush), which could be enough to get LRT over the finish line.

I'll also note that the next Task Force meeting takes place mid-November, aka after the election, so they'll know if there'll be a transportation bill (if the DFL wins the house) and will be able to plan around the results.

LRT to the Maplewood mall and freeway BRT from Stillwater/WBL to Minneapolis via the Maplewood mall would be a great result, though it's currently outside the scope of this. Perhaps truncating the line at the Maplewood mall in exchange for immediately starting to study (*sigh*) BRT on 36 could be brought up as an option, as they are proposing to truncate the BRT option.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby mamundsen » September 6th, 2016, 6:30 pm

I have been following this closely, I live just off WBL Ave just north of 694, and none of these seem very useful. I'd love to have LRT option to St Paul, the Airport and DT WBL... But...

I work in Minneapolis and take the 270. It has 10 min service with articulating buses that are always full. Whereas the 265 to St Paul is less frequent and less full.

How much would BRT on 36 improve on the 270?

twincitizen
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby twincitizen » September 7th, 2016, 7:26 am

At the risk of going off-topic, yeah it would be nice if we could just fund all-day service on our busiest express bus routes into Minneapolis. Your anecdote about the Minneapolis express bus vs. the St. Paul express bus is a good one, and I'm sure the situation is similar throughout the east metro (Roseville area routes, Woodbury/Oakdale routes, MVTA services, etc.)

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Tiller
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tiller » October 20th, 2016, 11:06 am

http://media.wix.com/ugd/6977a0_3cc698b ... 0f86b6.pdf

Meeting notes for today are out. PAC meeting is at the WBL Boatworks today from 2-4pm (per http://www.rushline.org/)

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Tiller
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tiller » October 29th, 2016, 1:14 pm

Open Houses scheduled in November and December for Rush Line Corridor Transit Study
Over the last year, discussions have been taking place with residents, business owners, other stakeholders and policy makers about the various route and transit vehicles options being considered for the Rush Line Corridor.

Join project team members at one of the upcoming open houses to learn more about details related to cost, ridership, benefits and impacts of each of these options and provide your feedback. Come see models of portions of the corridor to visualize what improved transit may look like. The open houses are open to all. Come and go as you like.
  • -The November open houses are geared toward specific neighborhoods along the different route options.
    -The informal setting will allow time for attendees to talk to project team members and complete written comment forms.
    -December open houses will include a presentation followed by a question and answer session
    -All open houses include time for attendees to provide feedback and have questions answered.
    -Dates and details are listed below.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Neighborhood Focused Open Houses*
When: Tuesday, November 29
Time: 4 - 6 p.m.
Where: Lake Phalen Community Church, 1717 English St, St. Paul (map)
Who: Residents and businesses along the County/Rail right of way/Bruce Vento Trail

When: Wednesday, November 30
Time: 4 - 6 p.m.
Where: White Dragon Hall, 1600 White Bear Ave, St. Paul (map)
Who: Residents and businesses along Maryland Ave and White Bear Ave
*open format with no presentation
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Community-wide Open Houses
When: Tuesday, December 6
Time: 6 - 8 p.m.
Presentation at 6:30 p.m.
Where: Hayden Heights Recreation Center, 1965 Hoyt Ave, St. Paul (map)
Who: Residents, businesses and general public

When: Wednesday, December 14
Time: 5 - 7 p.m.
Presentation at 5:30 p.m.
Where: White Bear Lake Area Schools District Center, 4855 Bloom Ave, White Bear Lake (map)
Who: Residents, businesses and general public

When: Thursday, December 15
Time: 5 - 7 p.m.
Presentation at 5:30 p.m.
Where: Maplewood Mall, near Sears/Southlawn Drive entrance, 3001 White Bear Ave N, Maplewood (map)
Who: Residents, businesses and general public

Information about the open houses and study materials are available on the Rush Line Corridor website.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tcmetro » November 14th, 2016, 11:43 am

Rush Line PAC will be recommending that all alternatives, except for Alt. 1 - BRT via County ROW, be dropped.

Refinements are still necessary on the downtown approach (3 dedicated options via Phalen Bl, or 1 mixed-traffic via E 7th St) and north of Maplewood Mall (via ROW or Hwy 61). Mixed-traffic operations in White Bear Lake are also being considered.

The alignment would cost $650 million and attract 5400 riders per day. The evaluation matrix on the last page suggests that the E 7th St mixed traffic option will reduce costs and increase population served to bump the project to a "Low/Medium-Low" FTA rating. All other alternatives, except Arterial BRT, achieve only "Low" ratings.

Metro Transit will be extending Rt 54 (supplementing portions of routes 61, 64, 74, and 80) to Maplewood Mall via E 7th, Arcade, Maryland, and White Bear Ave sometime in mid 2017. Half of the trips would continue north of downtown, meaning a 20 min peak frequency, and a 30 min midday, evening, and Saturday service. No Sunday service would be provided north of downtown.

http://media.wix.com/ugd/6977a0_e804a00 ... f87f7d.pdf

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VacantLuxuries
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby VacantLuxuries » November 14th, 2016, 3:10 pm

The alignment would cost $650 million and attract 5400 riders per day.
So I guess this is going to die then.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby grant1simons2 » November 14th, 2016, 3:20 pm

Maybe we should stop creating all of this planning and process for what in reality is just a God damn express bus.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby bptenor » November 14th, 2016, 5:21 pm

Shit. As someone who lives in the project area, I was hoping the planners would eventually figure out that a "fancy" bus is not going to be worth it. It won't attract new riders or increase the current ridership, and access isn't really improved since it's just a parallel to route 64 (which already has a stigma and you DON'T take it unless you have to). The only way I see this line being successful is if LRT is selected as the mode. It costs more, but we need to do things right, not cheap. It should drive density and development too; a bus through the backyards of SFHs is never going to do this. Plus, the reality of federal funding is not a given anyway.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby DanPatchToget » November 14th, 2016, 9:12 pm

Probably best to go with ABRT and have a feeder service between Forest Lake and White Bear Lake. Same projected ridership as dedicated BRT but costs a lot less. Assuming the next few ABRT routes have success like the A Line then it will be a proven transit mode in our region.

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Tiller
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tiller » November 14th, 2016, 9:22 pm

aBRT wasn't chosen because the 54 extension (which is planned for mid-2017) has "[the] Same stations, similar travel time, and slightly higher frequency than Alternative 4". Likewise, the I35E BRT was shelved previously because express bus service using the new Mn-pass lanes provided basically the same thing.

The reasoning behind the decision (note that ridership =/= new ridership):
Image

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Nick
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Nick » November 14th, 2016, 9:46 pm

d e v e l o p m e n t p o t e n t i a l

Vagueperson
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » November 15th, 2016, 11:31 pm

This is very disappointing...

twincitizen
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby twincitizen » November 16th, 2016, 9:49 am

The ridership was never there for rail. It might be in the distant future (or a future in which transit funding is abundant), but for the foreseeable future it is not.

Given that reality, would you prefer exclusive BRT in the county ROW for $600MM+ or aBRT for $75MM? The latter seems like an easy choice, as it:

1. actually gets built
2. gets built sooner
3. (long view) By not spending $600MM on this corridor now, I think that leaves open the political option for more spending on this corridor in the future. If they choose the dedicated BRT, that's all this area is ever going to get for 30+ years.

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Tiller
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tiller » November 16th, 2016, 11:19 am

At least with dedicated BRT in the RR ROW, at some future point it can be upgraded to rail. This does simplify the Question of Riverview's downtown routing.

The 54 bus will connect with it at the Maplewood Mall, in Phalen Village, and in Downtown. Add in the express buses on 35E, the connector/circulator to Forest Lake, and the existing bus service, and the East Side transit desert is finally coming to an end.

The 54 being incrementally upgraded to aBRT-quality (mentioned as a future project) and being extended to WBL via WBA would also be cheap+good improvements.

(wrote this^ last night for Vague Person but forgot to post it)

For #3, I'll definitely take a bird in the hand right now. Would picking aBRT delay the 54 extension at all? The marginal utility going from current service to the 54 extension is waay higher than from the 54 extension to aBRT.

This seems like it's probably the best compromise solution to be found. I wanted rail but you gotta work with what you got.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby mamundsen » November 16th, 2016, 12:41 pm

I was wondering the same thing as twincitizen. For $600MM I'd rather see the whole east side propped up with transit improvements. Let's have Rush Line aBRT, Hwy 36 aBRT, improved local transit and extended hours on express buses.

For example the 265 (WBL to Maplewood to Dt St Paul) and 270 (Maplewood to Dt Minneapolis) each only run for a few hours in each direction. Southbound only in the AM (5:45am to 8:30am), and Northbound only in the PM (3pm to 6pm). I'd love to have these expanded with some mid-day and evening service.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » November 16th, 2016, 2:39 pm

I look at this project from a local east St. Paul viewpoint rather than a regional one - and primarily as an economic development opportunity. If we're not getting LRT, I don't think it's worth disturbing the Bruce Vento Trail. Keep it aBRT on WBA. And if that, just make the 54 extension the same as the already planned "East 7th Street" aBRT. What frustrates me is the duplication/enhancement of service rather than the expansion of coverage. This aBRT route looks a lot like the already existing 64 and 61 routes. Maybe they'll rework the old routes after this is built. Connection to the airport is good. I had really hoped that this route would go along Phalen Blvd and help the development of the Payne/Arcade area specifically, as well as the rest of the Phalen Corridor.

This doesn't appear to be a game changer for this side of the city.

It would be nice if we could trade $1,700M or even $600M for a $75M aBRT and investment all over the East Side, but we know that's not how dollars work.

If I lived in White Bear Lake (or anywhere in MPLS) I'm sure I'd see this in an entirely different light.

twincitizen
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby twincitizen » November 16th, 2016, 3:18 pm

If we're not getting LRT, I don't think it's worth disturbing the Bruce Vento Trail.
This is the message Ramsey County politicians need to hear. If they do foolishly try to move ahead with the exclusive BRT, man oh man are they gonna meet resistance from people in the area.

mattaudio
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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby mattaudio » November 17th, 2016, 12:57 pm

Exclusive BRT is step one, MnPass is step two, full freeway in the Bruce Vento corridor is step three!


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