Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

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Re: Arterial Bus Rapid Transit Corridors

Postby mamundsen » February 22nd, 2017, 4:15 pm

Does the Rush Line get a "letter" line code now that it is going to be BRT? I REALLY think it should be colors for LRT, letters for BRT, numbers for local. That makes sense! Red and Orange.... but they are BRT? WHAT!? no. Fix it!

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Re: Arterial Bus Rapid Transit Corridors

Postby DanPatchToget » February 22nd, 2017, 4:38 pm

mamundsen wrote:
February 22nd, 2017, 4:15 pm
Does the Rush Line get a "letter" line code now that it is going to be BRT? I REALLY think it should be colors for LRT, letters for BRT, numbers for local. That makes sense! Red and Orange.... but they are BRT? WHAT!? no. Fix it!
I don't have a problem with a color for each BRT route. I know this is done in Los Angeles with the Orange and Silver lines being BRT while the rest are rail.

To me it distinguishes between BRT where the buses have shoulders or dedicated lanes, and arterial BRT where the buses operate in mixed traffic for the full route.

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Re: Arterial Bus Rapid Transit Corridors

Postby Silophant » February 22nd, 2017, 4:46 pm

That is the official distinguishing factor, as I understand it. Which seems to imply that the dozens of express buses that use the shoulders or MnPass lanes should get colors, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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Re: Arterial Bus Rapid Transit Corridors

Postby Vagueperson » February 22nd, 2017, 5:07 pm

I agree that it is a distinction between dedicated ROW versus shared traffic lanes. I also agree that it is confusing to someone who looks to vehicle type when distinguishing service levels. In reality, service levels can be fairly comparable between dedicated ROW rail and bus.

Paris has the RER with letters (and colors), metro with numbers (and colors), and buses with 2-digit numbers.
Denver does rail with letters and bus with numbers.

What should we do?

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » February 22nd, 2017, 8:20 pm

As discussed before, doesn't an official name come after the LPA has been decided?

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby twincitizen » February 22nd, 2017, 9:49 pm

The distinguishing factor is whether it is part of the "METRO" system or not.
BTW, do people even notice that Green, Blue, Red (and soon Orange) carry "METRO" branding and not "Metro Transit"? Probably not!
But hey, at least they are keeping that map up to date...it shows the updated Gold Line route, which was a pleasant surprise. It also shows the aBRT lines (in faint gray), even though they are not an official part of the METRO system.

Assuming Ramsey County successfully gets the chosen Dedicated BRT mode adopted into the Met Council's system map (later this year maybe?), my money is on the Silver Line, as it pairs well with the Gold Line in the east metro. On that note, it does kinda seem like Washington County jumped the gun a bit on naming their line, because A. it still had to be re-routed after the fact, and B. the project still to this day hasn't been transferred over to the Met Council. Hard to say why the Gateway Corridor Commission (aka Washington County) is still leading their project and not Met Council.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tiller » March 15th, 2017, 1:13 pm

Tcmetro wrote:
December 1st, 2016, 1:17 pm
I think that with all the programmed and potential improvements, the N/NE part of Saint Paul is due for a route restructure. 62 could become full frequent, 3 could be transitioned into a Maryland crosstown line and removed from Rice St, 71 could be simplified and improved, and 54/64 restructured and rationalized.
I played around with this idea a bit and I think a route restructure would be great. I threw in some of the things that have been floating around like extending Riverview up E 7th, St Paul refocusing its streetcar study on Payne, serving the Ford site with aBRT instead of redirecting Riverview, BRT on highway 36, Gold Line, and Rush Line, ect.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1sAhWx ... sp=sharing

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » March 15th, 2017, 8:40 pm

I'm curious why you had the #3 bus move south of Maryland west of Western but the #31 moves north to Maryland west of Western. Seems like one bus could just stay on Maryland while the other is on Case / Front / Energy Park Dr.

What's the idea behind the 54 aBRT reroute? Is that just in case the Riverview Corridor extends up 7th st?
Also, wouldn't the 54 aBRT stop at the Maplewood Mall rather than go all the way to White Bear Lake?

At my home I'd go from being 1 block from the 64 and 3 blocks from the 61
to being 1 block from Payne streetcar, 3 blocks from 54 aBRT, 2 blocks from Phalen BRT, and 3 blocks from #31 on Case. Huge transit improvement.

It's interesting to see the Payne Streetcar idea on 7th st downtown, which is not being considered for Riverview. We currently have no service on 7th Street.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tiller » March 16th, 2017, 10:50 am

Vagueperson wrote:
March 15th, 2017, 8:40 pm
I'm curious why you had the #3 bus move south of Maryland west of Western but the #31 moves north to Maryland west of Western. Seems like one bus could just stay on Maryland while the other is on Case / Front / Energy Park Dr.
Basically I split the two #3 branches into different routes. The #31 Bus Picks up the lower-ridership portions of route 3 since it becomes a E-W route (aka no longer serves downtown). The #3 Bus still goes downtown, though via Maryland Ave and Earl St, providing a close-in crosstown service for the east-side. The crossovers (which also happen between other routes further east) are to provide N-S connections, since the patchwork of a street grid and lower levels of development don't cheaply facilitate more N-S routes.
Vagueperson wrote:
March 15th, 2017, 8:40 pm
What's the idea behind the 54 aBRT reroute? Is that just in case the Riverview Corridor extends up 7th st?
Also, wouldn't the 54 aBRT stop at the Maplewood Mall rather than go all the way to White Bear Lake?
Yeah, it's assuming Riverview extends up E 7th St to Phalen Blvd/Earl St, where there'd be a new infill station on the Rush Line. A Similar example would be that the C Line aBRT will be rerouted from Olson to Glenwood once the Blue Line Extension gets built.

Also relevant here is that in St Paul's streetcar study, the Payne Ave Streetcar takes Lafayette Rd and Tedesco St between E 7th and Payne. This portion is specifically mentioned as a weak portion of the Payne streetcar in the same study, and is longer (more expensive) than heading straight down Payne to E 7th (after which it can share some tracks with Riverview). Because of this, the shorter streetcar route decreases travel time, reduces cost, and cuts out part of a weak segment. Rerouting the 54 aBRT can more reasonably serve this stretch while avoiding doubling-up high frequency service on E 7th St.

As for the 54 aBRT, the first step would be upgrading the entire newly-extended route 54 (MoA - Maplewood Mall) to aBRT. Extending it to White Bear Lake would produce the aBRT alternative studied for the Rush Line Corridor. This would generally build ridership and provide complementary service for the Rush Line.

Beyond that, if Riverview is implemented along the hwy 5 crossing (the direct route), The upgraded 54 bus could then be redirected to serve the Ford site, effectively implementing Riverview's BRT alternative with the addition of only 5 aBRT stations (1 at the VA Center and 4 in Highland Park), and while continuing to use all the previously upgraded 54 stops/stations. If they do decide to serve the Ford site with light rail, then the aBRT can just be left as-is, continuing to provide that direct service to the airport and South Loop.
Vagueperson wrote:
March 15th, 2017, 8:40 pm
It's interesting to see the Payne Streetcar idea on 7th st downtown, which is not being considered for Riverview. We currently have no service on 7th Street.
If Riverview is built as rail, St Paul won't have the option of using the Green Line tracks for their streetcars, since they'll already be at capacity. I'm not sure exactly how you'd deal with interlining services through downtown, especially if Riverview goes up E 7th, since there'd be 1-2 more streetcars entering from the west than the east (depending on how you route the Rice streetcar into downtown), and an odd number of streetcars (which doesn't lend itself to neatly pairing everything up). If E 7th stays rail-free, then you can pair Grand/Payne, Selby/E 7th, and Rice/Robert, with the first 2 sharing W 7th, and the last one having its own N-S tracks. The Smith Ave transit mall would be very important for allowing this to happen.

Two other points would be

1) extending the Payne Ave streetcar north of Maryland would be justified by servicing Johnson High School, and redeveloping the western-most block of Phalen Golf Course into TOD. We could create a TIF district in the area that helps pay for the streetcar, with a small portion funding a new anything-but-a-golf-course on the remaining golf course land at Phalen (which would still be way better than the golf course despite being smaller).

2) Because the A Line already serves Snelling, the Selby-Snelling streetcar can become a Selby-Marshall streetcar, ideally extending all the way to Uptown via the Greenway.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby EOst » March 16th, 2017, 11:51 am

I don't think your #31 makes a lot of sense. In combination with the 3 Crosstown, it means Como and much of the North End no longer have any downtown spoke routes, and it runs on some really weird streets (like Como/Winter, which are super steep and residential). I'm also just generally not sure that there's enough demand for single-seat crosstown trips from Como to Payne-Phalen to justify two criss-crossing buses half a mile apart. And at any rate, it's insanely long--something on the order of 20 miles--and that may well be too long without a break for the driver.

Instead, just have the 3A continue east on Maryland from Rice for your #3 idea, and leave the 3B basically as-is. Maybe keep it going east on Front at Western, to compensate for some of the frequency loss on Rice.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tcmetro » March 16th, 2017, 3:12 pm

Thoughts on your concepts (and some of my own ideas):

3 - might be worthwhile to terminate at Maryland/Arcade or send to Sun Ray via Maryland and White Bear. Keep on Como/Maryland instead of deviating to Front.

16 - Send to the Eastside (instead of Downtown) via University, Lafayette, Minnehaha, Atlantic, Phalen.

31 - Difficult to consider what to do with this one. It's quite long and could be shortened. I think that a second E-W crosstown could be supported by rerouting the 16. MT has proposed running the 3 Kasota branch to Westgate or Raymond Stn and renumbering to 33. I think Front could be served by eliminating the 84 along Snelling north of Energy Park and instead running along Front to Rice St.

54 - Would keep on 7th to serve Metro State, and would definitely not reroute through 46th St/Ford Site. Keeping a fast route from Downtown to the Airport and MOA is very important.

61 - I would keep this similar to the Metro Transit proposal to shorten the route to Maryland/Arcade and keep the routing along Arlington.

62 - Should definitely be Hi-Frequency between Downtown and Little Canada.

63 - I'd keep this going to McKnight and Lower Afton and instead extend the 74.

64 - I'd keep the 64, with half the trips ending in North St Paul (every 15 min). Every 30 minutes, the bus would continue to Maplewood Mall, like current. If the Payne streetcar goes in, I'd scrap the 64 in favor of an extension of the 3. Also I'd extend this one along Selby to the Midway to replace the 21.

66 - New route that would operate through Daytons Bluff, then along Earl to Maryland, and replace the 64 branch along Prosperity and English, every 30 minutes.

74 - I would branch this route at 7th/Hazel with one going to Ivy/120 and the other going down 10th St into Oakdale.

77 - MT's proposed McKnight bus. Might be a useful addition here.

80 - Would scrap in favor of a transfer between 54 and 3. Less convenient, but both routes would offer 15 minute service as opposed to the 30-60 min frequencies.

84 - As mentioned above, reroute to serve Front St instead of duplicating the A line.

218 - Not sure about this one. Might be worth considering splitting the 219 however. The whole WBL area needs some kind of additions, though, the current service is so bad.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » March 16th, 2017, 3:47 pm

I'd love to see a map!
Tcmetro wrote:
March 16th, 2017, 3:12 pm
Thoughts on your concepts (and some of my own ideas)...

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tcmetro » March 16th, 2017, 4:54 pm

Here's my map: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1gHqi3 ... sp=sharing

Assuming no Rush/Riverview.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » March 16th, 2017, 9:37 pm

I like the 64 on Selby and the #3 Maryland crosstown.
I find the #16 funny, though. If I were on the East Side I think I would transfer from the #16 to the Greenline once I got to it.
I know you intentionally left the Rush line out, but do you see no benefit to having service on Phalen Blvd? Also, why don't we have service on 7th st downtown? Is there really that much benefit running everything on 5th and 6th streets?

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tcmetro » March 17th, 2017, 8:23 am

Thanks for the input!

The 16 is somewhat wasteful in being a complete duplication of the Green Line into downtown St. Paul. Ridership is struggling, and most of the buses are running empty for the service being provided. It could be repurposed (and perhaps reinforced) by connecting some Eastside communities to Frogtown and the Midway. Eastsiders could also reach the N-S buses (Rice, Dale, Lex, Snelling, Cleveland) without going through downtown.

Phalen makes a good route to skip the inner Eastside and connect the outer parts and Maplewood to downtown faster. The Rush Line LPA (which will use Phalen to some extent) should be out this month, and I would imagine routes would be restructured around that. Rush Line reduces need for the 54 extension for example. 54 service could be reallocated to local routes to provide better connections to Rush Line stations.

I think the largest merit of the 5th/6th corridor in Downtown is the presence of the Green Line station. If some routes were sent to 7th, then people making transfers would have to walk farther. I think that St. Paul should consider converting 5th into a transit mall at some point, I suppose it could be somewhat like a Nicollet Mall for St. Paul.

One thing bothering me about my proposal is the overservicing of Maryland. Maybe this could be solved with a bus hub at the Phalen/Maryland Rush Line Station.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » March 17th, 2017, 8:15 pm

I've heard the argument about the Rush line on Phalen = skipping the East Side, but if it's designed to be a long range, limited stop service, doesn't it makes sense to skip through areas where you don't intend to stop as long as the stations it hits make sense? I appreciate what happened with the Green Line, but it is a sort of hybrid between a local bus and an express service. According to Google Maps it is a 48 minute ride between downtowns while the 94 Express is 38 minutes.
Phalen Village, Arcade Street, Payne Avenue, and to a lesser extent Cayuga and Olive, all make sense to me as areas with development potential.

Also, with the plans for the 4th Street Market District, I think it would be a very tough sale to have a 5th St transit mall. However, I 'd be in full support.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby pannierpacker » March 18th, 2017, 2:15 am

Vagueperson wrote:
February 13th, 2017, 12:35 pm
New document day: http://media.wix.com/ugd/6977a0_3ef7e0b ... dfadca.pdf
Looks like Phalen Blvd is getting most of the attention. Big question in my mind is how an Arcade Street station would work.
If it's at the bridge it's close to both the Seeger Square shopping center (needs major redevelopment) and the Beacon Bluff / 3M undeveloped site. But it's not very "walkable" and would require an elevator.

I once imagined it going along Wells, through Seeger Square, then back to Phalen along Neid Lane. Further from Beacon Bluff site, closer to existing homes, would necessitate rebuilding the Seeger Square center, a welcome consequence!
I agree that rebuilding Seeger Square would be a very welcome experience. I became intimately familiar with the area when I started rock climbing with friends at the Vertical Endeavors gym off of Phalen Blvd. The gym is technically apart of the same building as Seeger Square but it's only accessible from Phalen Boulevard. There is some evidence (a Dollar Tree loading dock off of Phalen) that leads me to believe that there are walkways, staircases to get from the lower level to the upper level of this massive building, but I can assure you the public has no access to these walkways! Many times we would eat up at one of the restaurants on Arcade and my friends would literally drive a half mile, because no pedestrian wants to walk down Neid Lane to get to Phalen from the top level of the shopping center. Furthermore, Vertical Endeavors has fencing all along their property, making it very difficult for a pedestrian to get access. The entire area is very unfriendly to pedestrians.

Your idea of running the busway along Wells right through to the shopping center is fantastic, because it would also mean connecting the neighborhood. Wells St. would need to be improved behind the industrial businesses today to make it desirable for pedestrians/cyclists. Currently it is very narrow and dingy. I would have no idea idea it lead to Phalen if I lived in that neighborhood because the road looks so abandoned/unkept.

At the same time I also really like the idea of putting a station at Arcade and Phalen (assuming the bus goes on Phalen?) because of how it would help push for improved access between Arcade and Phalen. I think a staircase would be wonderful. I realize that also probably necessitates an elevator which becomes prohibitively expensive unless you are building rail or a really nice highly utilized busway. Actually, what they probably should just do today (before any service improvements happen) is provide a trail to ramp down from Arcade to Phalen. It could easily be half the size of the Neid Ln loop and still accomplish the same thing.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Vagueperson » March 19th, 2017, 3:18 pm

It's possible that putting the bus along Wells into Seeger Square might require having a single lane transit-way if the Seeger Square buildings weren't being rebuilt at all: https://www.google.com/maps/@44.9676186 ... a=!3m1!1e3

I also think a much smoother bike connection from Arcade to Phalen could be possible. It's already sort of a mess of trails there, two leading between Phalen and the Bruce Vento Trail into Swede Hollow, and a somewhat questionable trail up to Arcade (since biking on Arcade is an uncomfortable experience). https://www.google.com/maps/@44.9665084 ... a=!3m1!1e3

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Re: Arterial Bus Rapid Transit Corridors

Postby SkyScraperKid » March 19th, 2017, 7:12 pm

Silophant wrote:
February 22nd, 2017, 4:46 pm
That is the official distinguishing factor, as I understand it. Which seems to imply that the dozens of express buses that use the shoulders or MnPass lanes should get colors, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Yea, except those express routes busses do not that the frequency that is required of a METRO color line. As they only usually have a commute to downtown in the morning and reverse in the afternoon. Hardly a service worthy of a color in the METRO system. Plus Express routes don't really service the corridor such as the Orange line will by having stops every so often. So I'd say it..

1. Individual travel lane.
2. Frequency of every 15min or less during bulk of the day.
3. Station stops throughout the corridor.

I would agree Red line barely fits that 3rd requirement but technically with the proposed stations it will better service the corridor eventually. While Express routes will never fully service the corridor or require the same level of frequency.

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Re: Rush Line Corridor (Alternatives Analysis)

Postby Tcmetro » March 20th, 2017, 2:19 pm

Vagueperson wrote:
March 17th, 2017, 8:15 pm
I've heard the argument about the Rush line on Phalen = skipping the East Side, but if it's designed to be a long range, limited stop service, doesn't it makes sense to skip through areas where you don't intend to stop as long as the stations it hits make sense? I appreciate what happened with the Green Line, but it is a sort of hybrid between a local bus and an express service. According to Google Maps it is a 48 minute ride between downtowns while the 94 Express is 38 minutes.
Phalen Village, Arcade Street, Payne Avenue, and to a lesser extent Cayuga and Olive, all make sense to me as areas with development potential.

Also, with the plans for the 4th Street Market District, I think it would be a very tough sale to have a 5th St transit mall. However, I 'd be in full support.
For what it's worth, it has been decided to proceed with the Phalen route for the Rush Line, leaving 7th St as the domain of the 54 line. The issue with Phalen is that it is a mostly trenched road, with a railway line immediately adjacent, which will complicate development around the stations. The benefit is that the transit line will make development around the stations more viable and could help to bridge the north and south parks of the eastside. Hopefully the various parties see fit to improving the 54 as well, as it will serve a lot of the existing core areas.

Here's the meeting packet with the LPA: http://media.wix.com/ugd/6977a0_d580a52 ... 310dcb.pdf

Stops are at:
Union Depot
Kellogg/Robert
6th/Robert
10th/Robert
Regions Hospital
Mt. Airy/Jackson
Olive/Phalen
Cayuga/Phalen
Payne/Phalen
Arcade/Phalen
Phalen Village (Maryland)
Larpenteur/English
Frost/English
Hwy 36/English
Beam/St. John's Hospital
Maplewood Mall
CR E/Hwy 61
Cedar Ave/Hwy 61
Marina Triangle (White Bear/Hwy 61)
Downtown White Bear Lake


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