Streetcar to the riverfront

Transportation topics in KC
FlippantCitizen
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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by FlippantCitizen »

New to the forum. Not sure if anyone has pitched this but it would be amazing to see a low cost express bus that runs from the northern streetcar terminus to the airport, possibly even with no additional stops. Not sure if the ridership would justify but I could see it becoming the preferred way to access the airport from any downtown/midtown location in the future.

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normalthings
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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by normalthings »

FlippantCitizen wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 4:57 pm
New to the forum. Not sure if anyone has pitched this but it would be amazing to see a low cost express bus that runs from the northern streetcar terminus to the airport, possibly even with no additional stops. Not sure if the ridership would justify but I could see it becoming the preferred way to access the airport from any downtown/midtown location in the future.
I think there may have been an express bus from the downtown transit center to the airport discussed before. I don't entirely remember unfortunately.

One idea would be transit center - 3rd & grand - KCI. That way you can pick up bus and streetcar riders.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by FlippantCitizen »

normalthings wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 5:05 pm
FlippantCitizen wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 4:57 pm
New to the forum. Not sure if anyone has pitched this but it would be amazing to see a low cost express bus that runs from the northern streetcar terminus to the airport, possibly even with no additional stops. Not sure if the ridership would justify but I could see it becoming the preferred way to access the airport from any downtown/midtown location in the future.
I think there may have been an express bus from the downtown transit center to the airport discussed before. I don't entirely remember unfortunately.

One idea would be transit center - 3rd & grand - KCI. That way you can pick up bus and streetcar riders.
That would make more sense.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by WoodDraw »

FlippantCitizen wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 4:57 pm
New to the forum. Not sure if anyone has pitched this but it would be amazing to see a low cost express bus that runs from the northern streetcar terminus to the airport, possibly even with no additional stops. Not sure if the ridership would justify but I could see it becoming the preferred way to access the airport from any downtown/midtown location in the future.
There have been talks but it wouldn’t be both low cost and express. I haven’t heard anything for awhile, but the price would be significantly higher than a bus fare.

My proposal was to run a special bus between plaza and the airport with very limited stops for like $20 a ticket ($30 round trip). That was ages ago though.

Dave might be able to offer more on their current thought.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by FlippantCitizen »

WoodDraw wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 6:01 pm
FlippantCitizen wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 4:57 pm
New to the forum. Not sure if anyone has pitched this but it would be amazing to see a low cost express bus that runs from the northern streetcar terminus to the airport, possibly even with no additional stops. Not sure if the ridership would justify but I could see it becoming the preferred way to access the airport from any downtown/midtown location in the future.
There have been talks but it wouldn’t be both low cost and express. I haven’t heard anything for awhile, but the price would be significantly higher than a bus fare.

My proposal was to run a special bus between plaza and the airport with very limited stops for like $20 a ticket ($30 round trip). That was ages ago though.

Dave might be able to offer more on their current thought.
As far as my thinking goes is people wouldn't use it with a 30 dollar ticket attatched. The connection to the streetcar at 3rd and grand as Normalthings suggested would make the connection to the plaza redundant. Utilize network effects to existing bus and rail routes. If a couple, family, or small party of bussiness travellers were to split an uber, $30 tickets would offer no incentive to use except for perhaps a single traveller commited to transit. A direct express bus connection to the streetcar line would seem a good way to leverage it's appeal to the tourist/bussiness traveller and even residents. As a potenial user I think it would only compete at a $12 or less price point. Any more and the savings just seem too slim for the average person who can afford airfare to consider. That being said the suggestion that the connection be at 3rd and Grand which immediately strikes me as a better idea my comment seems less relevant to the riverfront extension specifically.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by WoodDraw »

FlippantCitizen wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 6:37 pm
WoodDraw wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 6:01 pm
FlippantCitizen wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 4:57 pm
New to the forum. Not sure if anyone has pitched this but it would be amazing to see a low cost express bus that runs from the northern streetcar terminus to the airport, possibly even with no additional stops. Not sure if the ridership would justify but I could see it becoming the preferred way to access the airport from any downtown/midtown location in the future.
There have been talks but it wouldn’t be both low cost and express. I haven’t heard anything for awhile, but the price would be significantly higher than a bus fare.

My proposal was to run a special bus between plaza and the airport with very limited stops for like $20 a ticket ($30 round trip). That was ages ago though.

Dave might be able to offer more on their current thought.
As far as my thinking goes is people wouldn't use it with a 30 dollar ticket attatched. The connection to the streetcar at 3rd and grand as Normalthings suggested would make the connection to the plaza redundant. Utilize network effects to existing bus and rail routes. If a couple, family, or small party of bussiness travellers were to split an uber, $30 tickets would offer no incentive to use except for perhaps a single traveller commited to transit. A direct express bus connection to the streetcar line would seem a good way to leverage it's appeal to the tourist/bussiness traveller and even residents. As a potenial user I think it would only compete at a $12 or less price point. Any more and the savings just seem too slim for the average person who can afford airfare to consider. That being said the suggestion that the connection be at 3rd and Grand which immediately strikes me as a better idea my comment seems less relevant to the riverfront extension specifically.
There’s another thread where this has been discussed before but it’s not coming to me.

The problem with the streetcar and transfer to bus is that it’s very hard logistically. Especially if you’re asking people to transfer and walk to grand with luggage and kids.

That just takes a lot of time and like you pointed out, people can just Uber.

My argument was to make it expensive and have a stop on the plaza, Westport, Union station, and river market. Barcelona does this and it’s incredibly popular.

In my opinion the only way it works is by being expansive, direct, and limited to the urban core.

I don’t think the ridership exists for what you’re thinking.

WoodDraw
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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by WoodDraw »

You also have to target the market. The people that have the income to fly are also the people that will never do what you’re asking.

Two things can be true: we can have an express kci bus and also regular bus service. One can be free and the other one can be expensive.

I don’t think you can have both in one. I wonder if we can even do express service. But I still think what I’m saying is the best way to try.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by WoodDraw »

Also, kc will never fund something that isn’t stopping at the convention center which adds another stop. The route becomes difficult because you’re relying on hotels mostly and competing against cars and Uber.

And every hotel wants it close to them because of customers. Kansas City is hilly.

Your idea is great and it has been talked about, but it’s just hard to make work. So many different interests.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by WoodDraw »

This is my last post I promise.

The transit hub has been talked about, but no one that can afford it would go that way. Once people are in their cars they’re not going to park and ride and people that are price sensitive will take whatever they can get.

The only option for a direct is Union station in my view, and I’m skeptical of that.

Other people here know more than me. The last time I looked at it was years and years ago.

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normalthings
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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by normalthings »

STL has highspeed rail right to their airport. my experience ha been that most people trying to catch a flight drive, even if they are transit dependent. This "express" option is mostly used by staff at the airport.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by DaveKCMO »

I personally see express service to KCI independent of the streetcar. Again, as others have mentioned the transfer isn't ideal when you can just take the bus directly to where the people are (probably JoCo, Plaza/Downtown, and East Jack).

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by Chris Stritzel »

normalthings wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 8:18 pm
STL has highspeed rail right to their airport. my experience ha been that most people trying to catch a flight drive, even if they are transit dependent. This "express" option is mostly used by staff at the airport.
MetroLink is decent if don't want to pay for parking at Lambert. In my case, I've been dropped off at Shrewsbury Blue Line station and rode up to FP-Debaliviere and transferred to the Red Line. I do admit though that riding up from FP-Debaliviere to Airport Terminal 2 is a bit sketchy, especially in the evening. Airport staff use the Metro for the same reason that I first said, don't want to pay to park.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by smh »

We also haven't acknowledged that there is little to no traffic delay when driving between downtown and the airport. I think any friction in the system (e.g., riding the streetcar from plaza to downtown to catch a bus) would greatly reduce ridership because at that point it would be considerably faster to drive or take an uber.

I think we need a better bus to the airport, but I'm still not sure exactly what form is appropriate given how spread out the population is even among nodes that are somewhat proximate (see: Plaza and Downtown).

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by normalthings »

smh wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 1:02 pm
We also haven't acknowledged that there is little to no traffic delay when driving between downtown and the airport. I think any friction in the system (e.g., riding the streetcar from plaza to downtown to catch a bus) would greatly reduce ridership because at that point it would be considerably faster to drive or take an uber.

I think we need a better bus to the airport, but I'm still not sure exactly what form is appropriate given how spread out the population is even among nodes that are somewhat proximate (see: Plaza and Downtown).
imho focus on providing job access to KCI, KCI Logistics Center, etc.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by smh »

normalthings wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 1:10 pm
smh wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 1:02 pm
We also haven't acknowledged that there is little to no traffic delay when driving between downtown and the airport. I think any friction in the system (e.g., riding the streetcar from plaza to downtown to catch a bus) would greatly reduce ridership because at that point it would be considerably faster to drive or take an uber.

I think we need a better bus to the airport, but I'm still not sure exactly what form is appropriate given how spread out the population is even among nodes that are somewhat proximate (see: Plaza and Downtown).
imho focus on providing job access to KCI, KCI Logistics Center, etc.
Totally fair.

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Re: Streetcar to the riverfront

Post by flyingember »

normalthings wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 1:10 pm
smh wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 1:02 pm
We also haven't acknowledged that there is little to no traffic delay when driving between downtown and the airport. I think any friction in the system (e.g., riding the streetcar from plaza to downtown to catch a bus) would greatly reduce ridership because at that point it would be considerably faster to drive or take an uber.

I think we need a better bus to the airport, but I'm still not sure exactly what form is appropriate given how spread out the population is even among nodes that are somewhat proximate (see: Plaza and Downtown).
imho focus on providing job access to KCI, KCI Logistics Center, etc.
This.
I would more closely mimic a commuter rail system with the bus too

One long route starting in Raytown on 350 heading to to MLK Blvd to Troost, through downtown, north on Burlington and then I-29 all the way to the airport

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