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Do bicycles and cars mix?



 
 
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  #21  
Old August 8th 03, 02:10 AM
Dave Head
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

On Thu, 07 Aug 2003 11:09:49 GMT, wrote:


Dave Head wrote in message
.. .
On Wed, 06 Aug 2003 14:04:56 +0200, Dr Engelbert Buxbaum
wrote:

George Conklin wrote:

The more radical environmentalists have
published letters in our local newspaper saying that the goal of the
enviromental movement is to STOP TRAVEL or at least make it expensive

and to
minimize all travel. This is no different from the old British nobles

who
were against railroads because it would encourage the peasants to move
around too much. No difference today. Environmentalists are white

elitists.


The issue never was to stop travel, that would be nonsense. The idea
must be to use the right mode of transportation for each journey at
hand. For short (up to about 20 km) trips of a healthy single person
without heavy luggage, this is the bike. This is probably the most
comman type of trip.


Damn, I live just about that far from work. 24 miles of biking per day?

I
don't think so. Not only would I kill someone to avoid that sort of
imposition, it would also waste about 2 hours per day, not including the
necessary shower after each ride. I get to work and home in about 22

minutes
with the car.

Plus, on the roads around here with the blind corners and sharp hill

crests,
biker would get killed. I see _nobody_ biking these roads. No one is

that
stupid.

For other journeys, it may be bus, train, ship or plane.


Fatal flaw on all these: They run on a schedule. That means you have to

wait
for them to get to where you are in order to ride them. Efficiency of

travel
would go down, as would our overall productivity. Recreational travel

would
probably be nearly completely discouraged.

If this is the goal of "environmentalism", I'll oppose such

environmentalism
with all my strength as long as I'm alive.


The whole goal of making people live in modern mill towns is to cut down
ALL travel. At least our local radicals admit that, while planners hide
their hand and spout fumes.


Yep - deception is part of the environmentalist's strategy, esp. at higher
levels. I mostly don't believe a word they say.



And for some
journeys, it's the car. Even I get into situations were I use a car,
about once a month on average. Of course I do not keep a car for that,
but call a taxi.


Last taxi I took was from the airport in Indianapolis to home, across

town.
$50. I am not that rich! Fortunately, it was for work, and they paid for

it.

Taxis are an imposition on the public, put there because we cannot
make private deals with ordinary drivers to take us where we want to go for
a fee we both agree upon. Environmentalists know this, but their goal is to
discourage travel.


Yep.

The problem is not travel per se, but the missuse of an inappropriate
mode of transportation.


Anything you have to wait for in order to ride is "inappropriate", in my
opinion.

Want to get public transport actually accepted in this country? Build it

so
you don't have to wait for it. See the "personal rapid transit" mode of
operation as elaborated on the website www.taxi2000.com, and other places.
Trains, both inside cities and between cities, could adopt this model.

Buses
would have a problem with it, but the trains would be so ubiquitous, you
wouldn't need the buses anyway


How about saying, "Tripple your taxes?"


Maybe, maybe not. If the thing were _useful_ 24/7, then it might actually make
money.

If you could get up at 4 AM on Sunday morning, and drive across town with NO
traffic whatsoever in 45 minutes, or take a personal rapid transit and get
there in 10 minutes, how would you go? What would you pay for it? Suppose its
11 AM Sunday, and you're going to the Football stadium, and it would take you
45 minutes by car, plus parking time, plus $10 to park the car, or you could
get there in 10 minutes by personal rapid transit? I know how I'd get there,
and it would be worth something significant to do it.

Dave Head
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  #22  
Old August 8th 03, 02:21 AM
Daniel J. Stern
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

On 7 Aug 2003, Tanya Quinn wrote:

I don't see how this is diminishing productivity. Its not so hard to
plan your schedule around the transport schedule


Irrelevant. In a free society, people justifiably demand the freedom to go
exactly where they want, exactly *when* they want.

Most taxi trips are cheaper than that, and if as the OP says they only
need to use a car about once a month its much cheaper to use the taxi
than to pay maintenance, insurance etc on the car. (not to mention it is
depreciating in your driveway)


Fortunately, it's not your decision to make for anyone but yourself.

Is it so terrible to have to wait five minutes while reading a paper
or book


Yes! It's not the degree of the wait, its likelihood or its frequency --
it's putting oneself at the mercy of the vagaries of somebody else's
schedule. It's the principle.

DS

  #23  
Old August 8th 03, 03:43 AM
Pete
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?


"Dave Head" wrote

[snip]

All for now. Gotta get on the road.


All this merely points to a poor implementation of non-car transport.

It *can* be done. The US public merely lacks the will or desire to do it.
For a variety of reasons. Mainly, I think, because we don't *want* to.

Pete


  #24  
Old August 8th 03, 04:19 AM
Daniel J. Stern
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

On Thu, 7 Aug 2003, Dave Head wrote:

A much better transit system than Indianapolis is Washington, DC.
considerable distance to the platform, got on after about a 10 minute
wait, transferred to another train that was about a 15 minute wait...
Now, the trains run 60 mph at top speed, but they aren't at top speed
very much. They stop... and stop... and stop... Average speed is
pretty low, actually. Then you add the waiting when changing trains.


I was in DC last winter for the National Academy of Sciences
Transportation Research Board meeting. No fewer than *SIX consecutive
times* one evening, a train pulled into a major station, doors opened,
lots of passengers got on, doors closed, doors opened, and an announcement
came on the PA: "This train is now going out of service. All passengers
please exit." At one train every ten minutes, it took me an hour *just to
get on a train*. And this on one of the world's (generally justifiably)
renowned transit systems.

As for waiting on transit, _nobody_ likes to wait. On anything. But
waiting on a train is generally done in the weather, no matter if it is
raining, snowing, -20 degrees or 105 degrees. Its done in the rain, and
in the sun. Throw in an occasional mosquito for good measure. Then
there's the exposure to the criminal element,


....and the microbiological element. And the alcoholic element. And the
screaming-baby element. And the gangbanger playing yo-yo-bitches-yo rap at
cochlea-rending volume element. And the gaggle of teenagers whose every
other word is "****" element. And the panhandler element. And the "Is that
**** I smell?" element.

DS

  #25  
Old August 8th 03, 04:36 AM
Daniel J. Stern
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

On Thu, 7 Aug 2003, Baxter wrote:

I don't see how this is diminishing productivity. Its not so hard to
plan your schedule around the transport schedule


Irrelevant. In a free society, people justifiably demand the freedom to
go exactly where they want, exactly *when* they want.


"Beam me up, Scotty" - because THAT's what people want.


Well, certainly, Baxter, but since this is the real world and not Star
Trek, we want the highest degree of "where and when we want" we can get,
and that's private auto transport.

DS

  #26  
Old August 8th 03, 04:53 AM
The Real Bev
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

Pete wrote:

"Dave Head" wrote

[snip]

All for now. Gotta get on the road.


All this merely points to a poor implementation of non-car transport.

It *can* be done. The US public merely lacks the will or desire to do it.
For a variety of reasons. Mainly, I think, because we don't *want* to.


This is the USA. That's good enough.

If you want to get people out of their cars, devise something that does
the same thing as cars but better.

--
Cheers,
Bev
[] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] []
If voting could really change things, it would be illegal.
--Revolution Books, New York, New York
  #27  
Old August 8th 03, 06:53 AM
Marc
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

Dave Head wrote:

Yep - deception is part of the environmentalist's strategy, esp. at higher
levels. I mostly don't believe a word they say.


Deception is a part of the anti-environmentalist's strategy. They lied
when they said that there isn't such a thing as acid rain. They've lied
about the pollutants dumped into then environment. Most of the
anti-environment people are corporations that are as truthful as Enron, or
when Phillip Morris kept insisting that cigarettes are safe and
non-addictive. I've seen some cool adds from the 50s or so that claim they
are doctor recommended to relieve coughs.

Marc
For email, remove the first "y" of "whineryy"
  #28  
Old August 8th 03, 06:58 AM
Pete
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?


"Scott in Aztlan" wrote in message
...
On Fri, 08 Aug 2003 02:43:33 GMT, "Pete" wrote:

All this merely points to a poor implementation of non-car transport.

It *can* be done. The US public merely lacks the will or desire to do it.
For a variety of reasons. Mainly, I think, because we don't *want* to.


I fully understand why.

I live approximately 3 miles from my office. It takes me less than 9

minutes
door-to-door to drive there.


I live 3 miles away from work as well. It takes me 12-14 minutes by bike,
10-12 by car.

Lest you think I'm a 'bike nazi', I ride when I feel like it. Doesn't have
to be *every day*. But I've found commuting by bike allows a 2 car family to
be a one car family.

Think about it. At least one car in a two car family sits around almost ALL
the time. In the parking lot at work, or at home, when you're driving the
other one.

18 minutes/day use is not good economics.

Pete
And that's time I don't have to spend in the gym


  #29  
Old August 8th 03, 03:47 PM
Matthew Russotto
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

In article ,
Pete wrote:


Think about it. At least one car in a two car family sits around almost ALL
the time. In the parking lot at work, or at home, when you're driving the
other one.

18 minutes/day use is not good economics.


Time used per day has nothing to do with economics. If driving
became twice as fast, my car does not lose half its value. The value
in driving is in the distance taken, not the time.
--
Matthew T. Russotto
"Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice, and moderation in pursuit
of justice is no virtue." But extreme restriction of liberty in pursuit of
a modicum of security is a very expensive vice.
  #30  
Old August 8th 03, 10:35 PM
Tanya Quinn
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Default Do bicycles and cars mix?

Dave Head wrote in message exercise which is good for you. And if someone is driving to work and
then drives to the gym to work out for an hour, they've saved their
work out time by biking.


Well, right now I can't seem to exercise every evening, (I usually use a
LifeStep 9500 machine, if you're familiar with gym equipment), or my knees get
sore. I don't think I'd have much better luck on the bike.


Hi Dave,
Have you tried biking? Its actually a form of exercise that is least
harsh on the knees, definitely more so than stair climbing. I find my
knees get sore (as my legs are a bit uneven in length) if I walk for
too long and with stairs. If you get sore knees cycling you may just
need to adjust the height of the seat.

You don't have to bike a real long distance, short trips to the store
occasionally save wear and tear on your car and can be fun.

in other states, but they are all "State Highways" here. They're terribly
dangerous for the _cars_, too. I point it out, and they say its too expensive
to change. I say that's what dynamite is for...


Yup dynamite would be good

Firstly, I don't want to give up the luxury of not having to plan things. I'm
sure I'm not alone, so that will hurt ridership on that basis.


There's two types of travel: travel within the city, that you do on a
frequent basis. For this, yes, ideally you should not have to plan
your life around the transit schedule. In a city with enough demand,
vehicles should come by frequently enough that you don't have to check
the schedule (say every 5 minutes)

Travel between cities - usually this happens on a less frequent basis,
and the trips take a longer time. For this it is reasonable to plan
for a less frequent schedule. Obviously once a day would be
inconvenient, but hourly trains between major centers should not be so
much of a problem for this type of travel. You go to the station close
to the departure time, and ideally the trains run ON TIME.

Second, in order for transit to be _really_ accepted, it has to be faster than
a car, door to door, at all times of the day and night. That way, it can be
making money 24 / 7. Its no wonder the mass transit is so expensive, when it's
built such that it can only be used "efficiently" when the alternative is
totally hosed by congestion.


The main time when there is traffic congestion in any place is during
"rush hour", where everyone is trying to get to work at more or less
the same time. Commuting accounts for a large portion of personal
travel. If people used transit to go to work but cars for pleasure it
would still have many benefits for all. If you want to make the
transition to car-free you need to have competitive service at all
times of day and night, I don't think transit necessarily has to
always win, but to win some of the time, and not be too much of a
penalty at other times would be ideal.

As for waiting, it often isn't a short time. I tried to take the bus in
Indianapolis to get from a car dealer back home after dropping off the car. I
_waited_ for that bus, which was _scheduled_ to come 1/2 hour from the time I
got to the bus stop, but that one never came. I had to wait for the next one,
an hour later.


This obviously is not a place then where public transit is a viable
option. (for most people) If buses showed up every 10 minutes like
clockwork, you would be waiting on average for 5 minutes unless you
just missed one.

A much better transit system than Indianapolis is Washington, DC. I decided to
go to an inventor's meeting on the north side of DC. I hate to drive _in_ DC,
so I parked at Springfield on the south side, walked a considerable distance to
the platform, got on after about a 10 minute wait, went downtown, transferred
to another train that was about a 15 minute wait (this was in the evening), got
off at the closest station, and spent 15 minutes or so hiking up to the
facility where the meeting was. I had GPS to pinpoint the building, so I
didn't walk too far out of the way, but it was a pretty lengthy walk.


Where buildings are designed around the automobile and providing a lot
of parking, it is going to not be so convenient to take transit, as it
will be a long walk to most points from a rapid transit station. Its
hard to change the design of a city

I'm fortunate (transit-wise) in that I live in Toronto. Subway trains
come every 90 seconds during the peak periods, and 5-6 minutes in the
slowest periods up til about 1:30 a.m. These waits are very reasonable
for going places and many destinations are easily accessible from the
subway stations. Parking is also scarce and expensive in the downtown
so its quicker to take transit than drive AND park.

Now, the trains run 60 mph at top speed, but they aren't at top speed very
much. They stop... and stop... and stop... Average speed is pretty low,
actually. Then you add the waiting when changing trains. Its crawling,
door-to-door.


Because of stops subways and rapid trains within a city are usually
slower than a car could circle the city on an expressway. On city
streets traffic lights cause about as many stops as the train would
stop. For intercity travel though high speed trains that can travel up
to 4 times faster than cars become a very competitive option when
going somewhere that would be a 4 hour drive.

I could have easily _circled_ the city, and beat that train. The transit
system _has_ to go to the personal rapid transit model, with no stopping of
rail vehicles from start to stop, or it is never going to be competitive with
cars.


I don't believe that is necessary - it can be competitive when it has
its own right-of-way where cars are congested (and as population grows
traffic will become more congested), it can be competitive on price
where time is not too bad - if parking is scarce and expensive, it can
be competitive even if its slightly slower if its more comfortable
(not often, but room for improvement) or enjoyable (can do something
else at the same time)

technology is here, with personal rapid transit, if someone will just go ahead
and build it. People would likely still have to drive to a PRT terminal, at
least until the system is built out to basically "everywhere", but PRT would
win the competition, and then people would _pay_ to ride it. Beginning of the
end of highway congestion, I think.


I'm trying to envision how this would work. It will take a lot of
space to implement this and I can only see it working fairly well on
expressways - otherwise how does all the stopping, starting and
turning that happens on local streets take place? It may be better
than a high-speed train in that it eliminates waiting but it would
seem that it would necessarily be a huge consumer of space, with a lot
of empty vehicles constantly going by. While our current culture seems
to value personal space it takes up a lot more valuable real estate
than a train would. I actually enjoy the aspect of transit where I can
run into an acquaintance and have a conversation.

As for waiting on transit, _nobody_ likes to wait. On anything. But waiting
on a train is generally done in the weather, no matter if it is raining,
snowing, -20 degrees or 105 degrees. Its done in the rain, and in the sun.
Throw in an occasional mosquito for good measure. Then there's the exposure to
the criminal element, an acutal concern in some regions. One's car is a means
of rapid escape, with the capability of being a deadly weapon if necessary.


I think people are too highly paranoid about safety in general. But
lets ignore that and concentrate on your other points. Of course
nobody likes to wait. I don't like to wait. That's why I spend more of
my time riding my bicycle for transportation than I do taking public
transportation. I can get out my door and go, not walk to a stop and
wait and wait. Without adequate funding transit can't hope to come up
with efficient schedules.

When its snowing and you want to drive, you have to shovel your
driveway to get your car out, spend a few minutes waiting for the car
to warm up and get the ice and snow off the vehicle. If the roads
haven't been plowed yet its not fun trying to drive through either.
While many people have the luxury of a garage and space heater at home
these aren't often available at the other end - where they've parked.
When its snowing and I want to take transit, I dress appropriately
including boots, I walk, and its not so cold by dressing properly and
walking to the transit stop. If its a subway I'm waiting indoors. If
its a bus I'm waiting for there's usually a bus shelter where I can
stay out of the wind and not get snowed on.

If its raining I carry an umbrella. Really I think people are far too
spoiled somehow that they think getting a little wet or slightly
chilled is going to kill them.

But how about my upcoming shopping trip? I have to get to several outdoor
stores to do my shopping, then to a haircut, probably to Radio Shack, and
almost certianly a movie before or after. I can barely get that done in a car.
If there is a 10 - 15 minute wait for a bus to show up each leg of the trip,
it'll take 2 trips, minimum. Plus - I'm on my way to a movie as soon a I
finish this - 10:05 PM movie. Find me a train - or bus - at that hour. Ain't
happening...


I'm assuming these stores aren't in different cities. What I would do?
Bring my bike and a backpack and/or panniers depending on how much
stuff I had to buy. I also can bungee things to the rear rack - like
when I bought a heavy wooden stool. I attached a large crate to the
rack when I went shopping for a flat of pansies for my garden, and
didn't obviously want them to get squished in a backpack. (If I was
buying a whole carful of stuff it would be a rare rare shopping trip
and likely an excuse to need to rent one) Ride to each store, lock up
my bike right at the door (no looking for parking spots, or feeding
meters!) - though its a bit of a pain to take the panniers off each
time to make sure the stuff doesn't get stolen in the meantime. Where
I live a 10:05 movie or when it gets out would not be a problem on
transit, but I enjoy biking at night in the summer - there is a nice
breeze. If I had time I'd go home and dump my stuff first, then go
back on my bike with some lights. Lock it up well, enjoy the movie,
come back out, and enjoy the peacefulness of coming home when traffic
has really gotten light.

Tanya
 




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