KCMO Downtown Streetcar

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DaveKCMO
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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Mon May 23, 2016 9:03 pm

...and it's back online!

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by PumpkinStalker » Tue May 24, 2016 8:48 am

Who switches the tracks? Is it something the Streetcar operator controlls? Wondering if he/she switched it too late after the car was underway or if it was a malfunction of the switch mechanism....or as Facebook comments suggested, JoCo saboteurs lol

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Tue May 24, 2016 9:23 am

PumpkinStalker wrote:Who switches the tracks? Is it something the Streetcar operator controlls? Wondering if he/she switched it too late after the car was underway or if it was a malfunction of the switch mechanism....or as Facebook comments suggested, JoCo saboteurs lol
it's a spring switch, so the movement of the car in and out of the "tail track" triggers it (that's what the operators tell me, anyway). it's a pretty low-tech solution. if money was no object, it would be a powered switch.

here's the spot they're keeping an eye on, taken this morning by KSHB:

Image

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by KCPowercat » Tue May 24, 2016 9:51 am

So an uneducated guess would be there was enough gap from the spring not pulling back to its natural position that allowed the first two wheels to go straight then the other wheels hit the track like it should have and started going right.

Seems that could be an issue that doesn't have an easy fix other than drivers being super aware of the first wheels not catching...but even in that case not like they can just throw it in reverse.... A powered switch was going to break the bank? How easy would it be to upgrade?

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Tue May 24, 2016 10:31 am

KCPowercat wrote:So an uneducated guess would be there was enough gap from the spring not pulling back to its natural position that allowed the first two wheels to go straight then the other wheels hit the track like it should have and started going right.

Seems that could be an issue that doesn't have an easy fix other than drivers being super aware of the first wheels not catching...but even in that case not like they can just throw it in reverse.... A powered switch was going to break the bank? How easy would it be to upgrade?
given how long it took to get that switch right, i wouldn't even venture a guess. it would likely involve taking the line out of service, since it's the only way for streetcars to change direction on the south end.

if you expand the system south you don't need that switch anymore. ;-)

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by earthling » Tue May 24, 2016 10:50 am

BizJournal on the 'derailing'...
http://www.bizjournals.com/kansascity/b ... rails.html

So buses were used during the 5 hour downtime. Were those city buses? If there's any upside, it gets bus timid people to at least see what a city bus is like.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Tue May 24, 2016 11:05 am

earthling wrote:BizJournal on the 'derailing'...
http://www.bizjournals.com/kansascity/b ... rails.html

So buses were used during the 5 hour downtime. Were those city buses? If there's any upside, it gets bus timid people to at least see what a city bus is like.
yes, they were KCATA buses per an agreement to handle this kind of event. the downside is that whenever bus bridges are in effect -- especially for shorter lines -- not as many people use them. i haven't heard a ridership number, but not all KCATA buses have the automated passenger counters and obviously no fare was collected. i rode home at around 4:30pm and i was one of three riders.

streetcar authority tweeted that they still carried nearly 2,000 rides yesterday before/after the outage.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by earthling » Tue May 24, 2016 11:20 am

Is baffling that a free ride would be turned down because many only want to take the choochoo train (turning their nose up to bus). May not be the case/circumstance but wouldn't be surprising if the attitude towards bus.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by grovester » Tue May 24, 2016 11:38 am

Was the switch problem weather related? Ponding or debris?

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by KCPowercat » Tue May 24, 2016 12:08 pm

DaveKCMO wrote:
KCPowercat wrote:So an uneducated guess would be there was enough gap from the spring not pulling back to its natural position that allowed the first two wheels to go straight then the other wheels hit the track like it should have and started going right.

Seems that could be an issue that doesn't have an easy fix other than drivers being super aware of the first wheels not catching...but even in that case not like they can just throw it in reverse.... A powered switch was going to break the bank? How easy would it be to upgrade?
given how long it took to get that switch right, i wouldn't even venture a guess. it would likely involve taking the line out of service, since it's the only way for streetcars to change direction on the south end.

if you expand the system south you don't need that switch anymore. ;-)
Well hold my breath it was isolated until 2023 ☺

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by chingon » Tue May 24, 2016 12:15 pm

earthling wrote:Is baffling that a free ride would be turned down because many only want to take the choochoo train (turning their nose up to bus). May not be the case/circumstance but wouldn't be surprising if the attitude towards bus.
I don't find it baffling at all. I don't really agree with the sentiment (entirely) but if the last 60 years of transit in the US has held any lessons, it's that buses are people's least favorite way to travel that is not self-powered.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by earthling » Tue May 24, 2016 12:36 pm

Free circulator buses usually do well though, like downtown Denver's 16th St and Minneapolis' Nicollet pedestrian downtown streets. Bus is often disliked because it usually doesn't have dedicated right of way and has to deal with traffic. But so does KC's streetcar the way implemented.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by flyingember » Tue May 24, 2016 2:00 pm

I think you have a point there.

The streetcar works because there's no psychological barrier to trying to out. It's free, if it doesn't work out they didn't just spend $$ on tickets. Look at Atlanta how many people stopped riding when they started charging. All the best train systems are some form of high capacity spine.

So a free downtown circulator bus could work well, especially if it's a bridge to downtown destinations. Bartle Hall, Columbus Park, 18th and Vine, Boulevard, Crown Center

It could be peak hours only too unless there's an event downtown, to save on the cost.

Houston paints theirs a special color. It's the green bus

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by scooterj » Wed May 25, 2016 11:57 am

Broken down again? TKC and his cronies are being given too much fodder.

http://fox4kc.com/2016/05/25/electrical ... p-running/

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by KCPowercat » Wed May 25, 2016 12:30 pm

Looks like another construction project effed something up based on photos at the scene.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by beautyfromashes » Wed May 25, 2016 12:48 pm

scooterj wrote:Broken down again? TKC and his cronies are being given too much fodder.
Remember that time I shut down the TKC comments section? That was so fun.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by smh » Wed May 25, 2016 2:11 pm

beautyfromashes wrote:
scooterj wrote:Broken down again? TKC and his cronies are being given too much fodder.
Remember that time I shut down the TKC comments section? That was so fun.
Please explain.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by KCPowercat » Wed May 25, 2016 2:28 pm

So what penalties are in place for construction interrupting service?

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Wed May 25, 2016 2:56 pm

KCPowercat wrote:So what penalties are in place for construction interrupting service?
the traffic signal work at 20th and main is part of a city project. shall they fine themselves? i supposed you could fine the contractor, but i don't think there's any mechanism for that. i'm assuming they had a track access permit since it's been going on for several days.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Wed May 25, 2016 2:58 pm

working to bypass the affected OCS pole:

Image

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