Wednesday, December 16, 2015

DALLAS SUBWAY/ RAIL: Does DALLAS Have a Subway? ... Well ... "YES" & "NO" ... A "Common Sense" Look WITHOUT LEFT/ RIGHT Politics of Urban/ Metro Rail ... (TASTE OF TEXAS PT.27)

Dallas subway

Yes Virginia, Dallas DOES have a subway ... Thanx to Dan Weissman

Part 27 of the "Taste of Texas" series will be to point out the reality of urban/ metro rail, what worx, dont work, and what is considered as efficient rail transportation service. I chose the YouTube video above because of the title of it, and the comments left by folks ... I also have ran into these same questions from folks who just moved to Dallas- Fort Worth, or just visiting. It's amazing how many folks will turn every issue in this country into a left/ right (Democrat/ Republican) issue ... I mean ... some folks say that Dallas dont have a "real" subway system because they are in a "red state" ... no, I shit you not. Some also think that Texan's for example are too uneducated to be able to construct/ design/ plan anything for an urban development setting, it is amazing that so many American's who seem to be well educated, certainly have excellent grammar skills, etc ... can let themselves sink to a level of stupidity by letting their thought process be so controlled by a left/ right (liberal/ conservative) way only of thinking. Sadly, all the wealth that has been taking more control of our economies, politics, media/ communications and the rest are depending on that too. So allow me to dispel some of the bullshit and use a little common sense here, eh?

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Dallas DART Street Cars

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Central Dallas- McKinney Ave Trolley Cars

Yes ... Dallas does have a subway by definition ... but is it an efficient urban subway system? ... not in any way compared to a system like NYC, Chicago or major rail/ subway systems of the northeast ... NO. The systems for example in NYC, Chicago and London, which are systems I've used and more familiar with, have good coverage as far as covering boroughs and a broader region, besides the central and downtown areas. Also, this hasnt a thing to do with being in a red/ Republican state politically, and Dallas is actually dominated by Democrat's as a city. It hasnt a thing to do with not being able to design an urban system correctly either. Most engineering and planning are done all over the country on these things like rail design or even architectural for that matter, by folks from all over the country, and other countries whether they're from Asia or Europe or wherever. Dallas rail is good if you live on a line and use it for going to work, or out on the town for the night with other connecting points on lines, it does cover major sports/ concert venues, and large entertainment areas, shopping and hospital districts, etc. New developments and planning are built around the rail planning as well ... not the other way around. Understand that the Dallas- Fort Worth Metroplex is a very new and very fast growing area, even there is much undeveloped areas of land within the city limits of Dallas, something that you would never see in cities like in the northeastern corridor that have been developed and filled in to capacity for up to a century longer than anything here or in the southwest. Dallas does have also about the largest rail expansion going in North America ... BUT ... can it compare to a subway system in a place like Boston or New York? ... I dont see it even getting close to that amount of efficiency as far as urban/ metro transportation any time soon, those systems been in place for decades, and their cities are already developed to capacity, unlike here which is in constant development and expansion.

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North Dallas suburbs ... suburbanites love their freewayz, so you mostly have to sell them

Understand also that the mass of development here seems almost endless as far as how far out it will go, we are already laying plans for north Dallas suburban rail lines as far as McKinney just to tackle the growth and sprawl of North Dallas, which goes out 40 miles north from downtown Dallas ... just to cross the Metroplex/ metro area is 75+ miles, trying to plan "ahead" of the new development is critical in planning. There is also commuter rail to take you further out like Fort Worth, North Richland Hills or Denton, and there is direct service now to the terminals at DFW Intl Airport. I have walked myself across Manhattan/ NYC faster than I can drive at 70 mph highway speed across the DFW Metroplex ... a "Mapsco/ map" in the Metroplex is damn near obsolete after a few years, because of all the new streets, freewayz/ tollwayz, etc! Rail here and trying to make it work is a nightmare for those drafting this up. So YES ... the most efficient way around the Metroplex is by car ... and I dont see that changing any time soon. Also it needs to be promoted here unlike the northeast where it has been a way of life damn near for decades, for cities in the southwest from Texas to Southern California, driving and freewayz has been a way of life for decades. At the same time I am grateful of how well this rail system does work here, I have used it many times ... and I'm grateful of how much the Federal Government has shelled out money-wise to make something here to tackle the growth and transportation. We have been also having a million population growth here in the Metroplex every 10 years over the last few decades, and it hasnt slowed a bit.

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Dallas elevated rail

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Dallas- Fort Worth TRE commuter rail

Much of the rail here is also being done as "elevated" rail in urban Dallas, even though new plans for another Dallas underground/ elevated/ ground level is in the worx in downtown, because 3 or 4 light rail lines are using one track when crossing in downtown, what runs down Pacific Ave. downtown. So as far as trying to make a system that worx like say Boston, New York, Chicago or others, that is difficult here. Understand that those cities like in the northeastern corridor, were layed out and developed before the automobile was even invented, back in horse and carriage times ... the county/ city boundaries are smaller and more compact and people are more concentrated into less area than here. The freewayz here for example, blow away and are much newer and better than any freewayz anywheres in the northeast as far as efficiency and what they can handle. I cant tell about the Boston, Philadelphia or Washington DC subway system, because I never rode them, but heard they work well, as well as Atlanta's. But I rode daily the subwayz in Chicago, New York City, Toronto (ON), Montreal (QE) and London (UK) ... and those are REAL subway systems that work well! You had the same problemo in Los Angeles as far as getting around on rail/ bus (Houston too), and even worse than Dallas at that ... the LA area has been filled with miles and miles of urban/ suburban sprawl twice as large as here for decades! ... I mean, you can spend damn near 3 hours driving across the LA area from San Bernardino to Oxnard ... riding buses to get around LA may take you 3+ hours and transferring to 4 or 5 buses, because of how spread out it is! LA has been doing everything possible to lay out light rail and subway to work in that town, and has a pretty good lay-out for subway/ rail now it appears in the city (I never rode LA's rail, only the bus, I just mainly drove in that town), but to try to cover the LA "area" efficiently is challenging ... I mean ... have you ever tried getting around the LA area without a damn car? ... so you see what I mean. Most American cities over the last 20 years that been introducing rail, have been going with light rail, it's less expensive and can be re- routed and expanded easier. I also rode the light rail and buses in Portland (OR) too, which seemed to work very well, but too, Portland is layed out like a northeastern city. Phoenix has also been trying to make light rail work, another fast growing and spread out city of the southwest. No, we dont have a rail/ subway system like northeastern cities, nor are these cities layed out or designed like those cities, so dont expect to have a system that can work the same as it would there any time soon.

Word Out ....

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Dallas- Denton DCTA "A- Train" rail




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