Urban planning community

+ Reply to thread
Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Light rail transit rights-of-way on pedestrian streets

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Posts
    23

    Light rail transit rights-of-way on pedestrian streets

    Hello,

    I am conducting an Honours' research project on the potential for running the downtown alignment of Ottawa's proposed north-south LRT line on the pedestrianized Sparks Street as opposed to its current alignment along the already congested Albert and Slater Streets, which are used for the city's BRT buses.

    Do any of you know of LRT systems elsewhere in the world that feature alignments along pedestrian streets or plazas that I might want to look in to? I have been trying to sort through many systems (especially those in Europe) to find examples of this.

    Regards,

    - Ken
    Last edited by Gedunker; 15 Nov 2006 at 9:25 PM.

  2. #2
    You may want to check out New Orleans which has had a light rail system along several boulevards in that city for some time. I've visited a number of northern European cities (especially Copenhagen) and can't recall anything similar. Public transit in the Scandinavian nations has always had a high ridership due to both taxes on private vehicles and subsidies for mass transit.

    If I run across something I'll post it here.
    Je suis Charlie

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
    Registered
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Jukin' City
    Posts
    16,951
    Muni Metro runs up Market Street and out in the Avenues in San Francisco.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
    Registered
    Aug 2001
    Location
    The Cheese State
    Posts
    10,062
    I think some of Torontoe's system is built along a pedestrian-way.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  5. #5
    San Jose's light rail has some car access but is mostly pedestrian.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
    Registered
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Where Valley Fever Lives
    Posts
    7,617
    Blog entries
    1

    Oh Yeah.....

    I can't wait for the Phoenix lines to open up......LOTS of PED/Train/Vehicle interaction going on there.... I'll get my popcorn and folding chair to watch all the action
    "The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."
    John Kenneth Galbraith

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered
    Jul 2004
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area, California
    Posts
    9
    About San Jose's, the part that runs through Downtown SJ is partially pedestrianized, with two lanes of car/bus traffic, no parking, and about half the street dedicated to pedestrian and trolley use (a "transit mall"). However, the trolleys are only allowed to run a maximum of 8 mph, and it appears this is either because it basically runs just inches from pedestrians without barriers/bollards/etc. or because drivers making right turns have to watch out for passing trolleys. My impression is that the design of the transit mall is widely regarded as flawed, but I could be wrong.

    Some pictures. Note how the sidewalks are only separated from the track by trees every 20 feet or so and how people can gather all around the tracks. At one spot, a restaurant has several sidewalk tables that almost force pedestrians to walk on the tracks, and on Friday & Saturday nights the party crowds there all congregate on and near the tracks, and the trolley has to honk them out of the way.
    http://flickr.com/photos/michaelpatrick/21542730/
    http://world.nycsubway.org/perl/show?46732
    http://world.nycsubway.org/perl/show?46750
    http://world.nycsubway.org/perl/show?54870
    http://world.nycsubway.org/perl/show?54869
    http://world.nycsubway.org/perl/show?54851

  8. #8
    Member
    Registered
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Posts
    23
    Interesting... Thanks for the info, folks! I am sure that I have seen photos of LRT systems in either Germany or the Low Countries that run along pedestrian malls.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Boru's avatar
    Registered
    Nov 2004
    Location
    At the dining table
    Posts
    235
    Freiburg in Schwabia, south-west Germany has an extensively pedestrianised city centre. The city has several tram lines, most of which run through the city centre. The city is the green capital of Germany, and won an eco award for the whole city in 2004 from the EU. The motto of the City Council is 'A City of Short Distances' meaning that the everything that the inhabitants can reasonably need is within a short distance of their home. A fantastic place to visit and the kind of city which would reinspire jaded planners.

    I also remember through the fug of Schumacher Beer that Dusseldorf in Germany has a main line tram running through a very busy pedestrainised street/space.
    Even a stopped clock tells the right time twice a day.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian njm's avatar
    Registered
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Highlight of the lowland
    Posts
    322
    Quote Originally posted by Gedunker View post
    You may want to check out New Orleans which has had a light rail system along several boulevards in that city for some time. I've visited a number of northern European cities (especially Copenhagen) and can't recall anything similar. Public transit in the Scandinavian nations has always had a high ridership due to both taxes on private vehicles and subsidies for mass transit.

    If I run across something I'll post it here.
    Copenhagen doesn't have any trams left... they pretended to be American and tore them all out. They're just now building a Metro system (fully automated).

    There are short (less than 50 meters) sections of pedestrian street tram tracks on Gothenburg (Göteborg) near Järntorget and Centralstationen. Otherwise it's all dedicated ROW or street-running. Norrköping has a section on Drottninggatan where a gauntlet track runs through a (very narrow) pedestrian street. I have no pictures of Gbg, and only have one picture that shows the mixed-traffic part right before Drottninggatan becomes a pedestrian-and-tram street.

    Trondheim's trams only run on 'regular' streets. It was too cold for me to take pictures anyway. Oslo has a stretch near Aker Brygge / Akershus where the trams run off-street through an area without any well-defined use (pedestrian use is possible... but most people walk along the water instead of next to the tram tracks.) Attached are a number of pictures of the area (it's quite large and quite open.) Only one or two show the tracks.











    Other suggestions (which I have not visited as much and know less about) are:

    Amsterdam
    Brussels
    Helsinki
    What luck! A random assemblage of words never sounded less intelligent.

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Posts
    23
    Thanks, folks. I've done some browsing and I have discovered that most cities in Europe with tramway systems have routes that encounter pedestrianized areas. Some of the best and most harmonious examples of this that I have been able to find are Amsterdam, Strasbourg, Zurich and Gent.

    Does anyone know how fast the LRT vehicles travel through the pedestrian districts in these cities?

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Greenescapist's avatar
    Registered
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    1,169
    Look at Portland, Oregon, too. I can't remember if their LRT and trolleys were on a shared path with pedestrians, but there was very little vehicle traffic (if any) on some of the routes I saw.

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Posts
    23
    Hm, Portland always seems to find its way into my studies...

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Boru's avatar
    Registered
    Nov 2004
    Location
    At the dining table
    Posts
    235
    The trams in Dublin do about 30kmph on city centre streets, which have very heavy pedestrain footfalls. The trams that I saw in the cities mentioned in my previous post would be far slower, about 10kmph in the peredstrianised areas. But that was on a very busy Saturday night. People get used to trams very quickly and realise that the trams cant swerve out of the way if they step in front of them. That said I have seen a tram slam to a full stop in a metre from a speed of about 30kmph. It was amazing. I'm pretty sure the Granny who it had to stop for was pretty amazed too. This website may give you more info. Its for light rail nerds.

    http://www.lrta.org/
    Even a stopped clock tells the right time twice a day.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian geobandito's avatar
    Registered
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    509
    It's not light rail, but Denver has a free bus service that runs up and down the 16th Street Mall ped zone with very short headways.

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Posts
    23
    Boru, thanks for the link! Of all the LRT-related websites I've seen, I have somehow managed not to find this one until now.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian the north omaha star's avatar
    Registered
    Nov 2003
    Location
    at Babies R Us or Home Depot
    Posts
    1,260
    You can try the Central Light Rail on Howard Street pedestrian mall in Baltimore.
    I am recognizing that the voice inside my head
    is urging me to be myself but never follow someone else
    Because opinions are like voices we all have a different kind". --Q-Tip

+ Reply to thread

More at Cyburbia

  1. Using air rights over streets
    Make No Small Plans
    Replies: 8
    Last post: 06 Dec 2008, 8:30 PM
  2. Replies: 11
    Last post: 27 Sep 2006, 8:37 AM
  3. Atlanta and Pedestrian Rights
    Cities and Places
    Replies: 5
    Last post: 05 Aug 2006, 8:42 PM
  4. Replies: 26
    Last post: 17 May 2006, 7:49 AM
  5. Light Rail
    Transportation Planning
    Replies: 5
    Last post: 05 Jan 2003, 12:03 AM