A streetcar named DestiNY

A somewhat major news story that’s been utterly lost in the Wall Street chaos is a fairly widespread and persistent gasoline shortage across parts of the inland Southeast, due to some refineries not being up to speed after Hurricanes Gustav and Ike. The shortages seem especially bad in metro Atlanta, which doesn’t exactly have the best public transportation system serving its far-flung exurbs, and now that gasoline has just disappeared there, some are wondering why not.

I love maps, and recently on Steve Balogh’s blog, a commenter posted this proposal for a streetcar route serving the major transportation centers (airport, bus, train), Carousel Mall, the War Memorial and other attractions. Here’s the original post with the comment below it; the commenter estimates a $250 million cost. Good idea, or not?

Updated: On the general subject of transportation – here’s some interesting news about the state’s plans for the Tappan Zee Bridge, one of the most critical pieces of infrastructure in the state (and you could even look at it as the symbolic link between Upstate and Downstate). It’s a hugely expensive plan to replace the bridge with a new structure that permits high-speed bus and (regular speed) rail corridors. (This news bit really deserves its own post, so maybe I will return to it at a future date.)

2 Replies to “A streetcar named DestiNY”

  1. as james howard kunstler likes to say, “we have a rail system that the bulgarians would be ashamed of.”

    personally, i see no faults in building a trolly or light rail system here (though i’m sure that there are others who would vehemently disagree). by doing so we would be saving money on commuting and travel costs (less gas use and maybe less car ownership – which could free up more parking spaces in the city for the suburbanites who often complain), we would equally be helping out the poor, middle-class, and upper class demographics (given it’s close proximity to cultural, commercial, work, residential, entertainment, and travel destinations – something that ontrack could never accomplish), rail is not some new, fancy technology that people are unfamiliar with, and it might even give our city some “identity” or an “image” that people are so often complaining about.

    also, if we put some additional people to work at all levels with real jobs (not your petty, minimum-wage, short-term destinyusa jobs), i’m all for it.

    the only thing that might need to be changed is some re-routing of one-way streets in the city (perhaps just eliminating them) and building some kind of elevated train tracks when you get around the cross section of 81 and route 11 as i can’t imaging a trolly passing through normal traffic there. great concept though.

  2. i forgot to mention that this thing would probably need to be heavily subsidized (most mass transit is). but i would have no problem with that. my taxes could double and i’d still be happy. as long as i could sell my car it wouldn’t matter.

Comments are closed.