KCMO Downtown Streetcar

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chingon
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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by chingon » Fri Jun 01, 2018 8:59 pm

DaveKCMO wrote:
ldai_phs wrote:Unpopular Opinion: the grey streetcars are ugly.

I really enjoy the lovely colors that the party car has been “painted” with. I wish we would have picked a livelier paibt schene fir our cars
I wanted red, but was convinced to support the "timeless" scheme we have now.
Put my firmly in the don’t care column, as long as they don’t get twee bullshit “branding” like “the Wave” or “the Emerald Express” or “the MAX”, I’m pretty happy.

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TheLastGentleman
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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by TheLastGentleman » Fri Jun 01, 2018 9:06 pm

The white was a good choice. I'm typically an advocate of color, but in this situation I think white looks more sophisticated and contrasts with buildings and the pavement well. Makes it look a bit like a spaceship or something. It's a good vehicle color. My only complaint is the grey trim. It really takes away from the purity of the white. I'll never understand why grey became such a ubiquitous color smh

Regardless, it doesn't matter at all in the end, and this is coming from the same person who helped drive strangerthings to the edge of insanity complaining about glass color

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by normalthings » Fri Jun 01, 2018 9:50 pm

TheLastGentleman wrote:The white was a good choice. I'm typically an advocate of color, but in this situation I think white looks more sophisticated and contrasts with buildings and the pavement well. Makes it look a bit like a spaceship or something. It's a good vehicle color. My only complaint is the grey trim. It really takes away from the purity of the white. I'll never understand why grey became such a ubiquitous color smh

Regardless, it doesn't matter at all in the end, and this is coming from the same person who helped drive strangerthings to the edge of insanity complaining about glass color
Consider yourself uninvited on Tuesday......

Just kidding of course.

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TheLastGentleman
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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by TheLastGentleman » Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:38 pm

The modern streetcars are endangering the historic character of downtown. I demand they be altered to resemble this.

Image

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normalthings
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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by normalthings » Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:43 pm

TheLastGentleman wrote:The modern streetcars are endangering the historic character of downtown. I demand they be altered to resemble this.

Image
No. Even that is unhistoric in comparison to our historical surface parking lots

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DaveKCMO
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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:36 pm

A software update has boosted the A/C in the current fleet. Noticed a big difference on Saturday afternoon.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by KCPowercat » Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:38 pm

This is such a small gripe but I really don't like the door buttons. Much prefer the flat ones that are more of a skin feel I've seen on other systems

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by flyingember » Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:58 pm

KCPowercat wrote:This is such a small grioe but I really don't like the door buttons. Much prefer the flat ones that are more of a skin feel I've seen on other systems
I don't like them because the lighting that tells you it's ready is so subtle. I get how it works and more than once exterior glare on the button has tricked me because it's down near my waist. A way simpler difference of off vs on would be nice where dark = no.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by earthling » Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:27 pm

The streetcar had a problem again this morning announcing the next stop before pulling into the upcoming one, confusing everyone. This seems to happen a bit too often. Do drivers have control to sync it up?

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by flyingember » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:17 pm


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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Sat Jun 23, 2018 2:53 pm

There’s a preliminary schedule for “six-car” service. Six would never run at once, but four would run with regularity May-October, pending 2019 budget approval. Obviously 805 and 806 must arrive first.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by earthling » Sat Jun 23, 2018 4:52 pm

The 3 streetcar run doesn't seem to be as consistently efficient as it should be even during lower street traffic periods. I often see the 'layover' at Union Station not take off until the one 'behind' it' is approaching the station or at Xroads stop. Seems the car at US should leave about the time car 'behind' is at P&L to keep 3 cars more actively running and spread evenly. It seems to be inconsistent and if the latter happens, 10-12 minute minute wait max is more likely. If the former happens, can be 20 minute waits for some. I'm not talking during heavy traffic days (especially common Sat RM bottleneck), this happens during low traffic periods.

Anyone know the methodology used to trigger when the car from US leaves? Do drivers monitor the other car locations or some automated indicator tells them when to leave? Would think best approach would be to keep 3 evenly spread as best as possible.

Can watch it here...
http://kcstreetcar.org/route/streetcar-tracker/

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Sat Jun 23, 2018 9:51 pm

It's on a schedule and there's a module in the cab that tells operators how they're adhering to that schedule. Streetcars depart Union Station when scheduled, regardless of when one arrives or casual observation. OTP is in the 90s and what matters is the actual wait time in between departures at intermediate stops. If you stood at one stop all day (not the terminus) you'd easily observe the schedule. Most people don't.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by beautyfromashes » Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:05 pm

I think he’s wondering why the Union Station stop is so much longer than the others. I’ve wondered the same, why hold at US for several minutes compared to other stops?

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:08 pm

beautyfromashes wrote:I think he’s wondering why the Union Station stop is so much longer than the others. I’ve wondered the same, why hold at US for several minutes compared to other stops?
It's one of two layover points for operators. The other is River Market West. They have to use the restroom on occasion. The US layover used to be a lot longer until a recent schedule improvement on weekday mornings and evenings.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by beautyfromashes » Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:52 pm

DaveKCMO wrote: It's one of two layover points for operators. The other is River Market West. They have to use the restroom on occasion. The US layover used to be a lot longer until a recent schedule improvement on weekday mornings and evenings.
Good to know. Don’t pick up from that stop very often, but last time the wait felt like about 10 minutes. Glad they changed it to keep moving more quickly. You said that the drivers have an on board rhythm that tells them if they’re keep pace. Do they plan to speed up the cadence as drivers should now be more comfortable with the route? They shouldn’t have to be as cautious with parked cars as when the line launched and things that slowed them down at the beginning should now be second nature.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:50 am

We’ve already done that multiple times since launch. Run times are down dramatically (several minutes). Peak times — weekday lunches and Saturday— won’t be able to see big changes with three cars, which is why a fourth car would be added when the new ones arrive next year.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by earthling » Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:53 am

DaveKCMO wrote:It's on a schedule and there's a module in the cab that tells operators how they're adhering to that schedule. Streetcars depart Union Station when scheduled, regardless of when one arrives or casual observation. OTP is in the 90s and what matters is the actual wait time in between departures at intermediate stops. If you stood at one stop all day (not the terminus) you'd easily observe the schedule. Most people don't.
From perspective of regular bus riders, if headways are 20 minutes or higher, sticking close to a 'timetable' is more important. If headways are 15min or better, keeping that 'timeframe' is more important than 'timetable'. That is, nobody pays attention to timed schedules if it runs often but they expect it to be under 15min wait.

The streetcar system shouldn't bother with a posted timetable and instead come up with a method to keep the streetcars evenly distributed, such as driver leaving Union Station when the train behind hits P&L stop when possible (factoring driver breaks as exceptions).

Will 4th car run regularly when more arrive or just during heaviest days/events?

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by Critical_Mass » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:12 am

Minor complaints, but:
Do they do training 'refresher' sessions for existing operators? Most operators are top-notch, but there is one our household refers to as 'ol hurky-jerky lead-foot. Lead-wrist, I guess is accurate. They accelerate in tiny bursts, like a car driver who tap, tap, taps on the gas pedal. You really need to hold on, even if seated.
Retraining could also be an opportunity to reinforce consistent practices. Either stop at every station or don't stop at one if no one is waiting and the button hasn't been pushed. Either open the doors automatically our require the button to open. In each case, pick one and go with it.

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Re: KCMO Downtown Streetcar

Post by DaveKCMO » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:18 am

This has nothing to do with a regular bus rider's perspective because you very likely don't board at a layover point. Streetcar uses the same route management system as KCATA buses, a very intentional decision. The fact that there's a "schedule" -- which no one has ever seen printed because it never has been printed -- actually keeps the cars spaced evenly apart when the operators adhere to it (which the system coaches them to do, just like on the bus). Prospect MAX will have 10 minute headways most of the weekday when it launches and it will use the same system, and you might be confused if you just judged that route while standing at 75th and Prospect or Barney Allis Plaza (the two layovers for that route).

Because the Union Station layover confuses you has no bearing on the actual service being delivered. If you literally stand at any interim stop and time the wait between vehicle departures the system will meet the stated frequency (which is 10, 12, 15, and 18, depending on the time block and day of the week).

Streetcar briefly tried scrapping a schedule at launch and kept cars evenly spaced via radio communication between operators and supervisors. That made the real-time arrival signs (which take the schedule into account when estimating arrival times) inaccurate. Since everyone rightly complained about that, they went back to following the schedule and making incremental improvements in run times.

When the system becomes seven miles long, it will also run on a schedule (unless the route management system changes) because that allows accurate trip planning. If you enter a destination into Google Maps and tells you the streetcar arrives at 6:04pm, I think you'd want that to be pretty close to reality.

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