Regional Transit Coordination

Transportation topics in KC
flyingember
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by flyingember »

There's too much under utilized service and a network design we can't afford further out so we need to shift the system towards a brand new style.

Every time the system is redesigned it's putting lipstick on a very average pig and the suburbs don't want a pretty pig.

Refocus transit network onto four things:
100% free express bus on point to point commercial corridors focusing on getting to work (office, industrial and retail)
Flex zones with bus on demand to serve neighborhoods
ebikes for the last mile in a huge service area
Long distance rail to cover large distances fast with minimal stops.

How to raise money:

1: The 1996 Union Station bi-state tax raised $121 million in five years on a 1/8 cent tax in Platte, Clay, Jackson and Johnson. So let's say there was a 1/2 cent tax across 20 years and we add nothing for inflation and we add Wyandotte. That's at least $100 million per year giving no less than $2 billion over 20 years.

2: Add pay for virtual HOV lanes (read below for this idea)

3: A property tax on commercial property in five counties, same min value exemptions for nonprofits/religious as the streetcar has.

4: a monthly pass for long distance commuter rail. it's expensive and premium, have people pay

5: municipal matches to cover comprehensive service

6: premium service passes. like enable pre-scheduling flex service pickup up to a week in advance.


The centerpiece of the new network is bikes
Let's say an e-bike costs $5000 in bulk including labor, insurance, racks, etc

For one year of that 1/2 cent year tax that's 20,000 bikes and I picture 10,000 racks. The same racks can be used to lock up privately owned bikes too.

If they're put in 1/3 of the four counties that's about 640 square miles to cover. Or 30 bikes per square mile and induce demand for hundreds more that are privately owned. Realistically I picture there will be more bikes in popular use areas and the lowest density areas doesn't have them.

the bike serves both as a last mile connector with racks at bus stops, and local service in neighborhoods to replace short car trips. ebikes because it makes biking easier.


All day free express bus lines are run on all major corridors and many of today's low use lines become on demand flex service. This low use flex bus service focuses on personal service, not walking to a stop every few blocks and waiting 30 minutes.

If a municipality is willing to pay for more service they get more service, like KCMO pays enough it could probably keep most routes around as additional free service


To encourage bus ridership rethink HOV lanes. Virtual HOV lanes on both city streets and freeways that you can enter anywhere in the system and you need two or more people or to pay to use it. So any road that's on the MARC fast service plans gets these lanes

and then when bus demand dies during the middle of the day, it's turned off. Omaha has/had some lanes line this where an arrow overhead flips the direction during the middle of the day to show what lanes can be used


This benefits all users because it's a transportation plan, not a transit plan

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normalthings
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by normalthings »

DaveKCMO wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 9:38 am
DaveKCMO wrote:
Sat Dec 14, 2019 11:10 am
Regional funding could boost everything, especially the key corridors: Metcalf, State, North Oak, Independence.
https://www.kcata.org/procurement/regio ... consultant

Let's keep discussion of this RFP and resulting plan here, since it's more than just streetcar.
When will an attendance list for today’s pre-bid meeting be released?

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DaveKCMO
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by DaveKCMO »

normalthings wrote:
Wed Jan 06, 2021 1:38 pm
DaveKCMO wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 9:38 am
DaveKCMO wrote:
Sat Dec 14, 2019 11:10 am
Regional funding could boost everything, especially the key corridors: Metcalf, State, North Oak, Independence.
https://www.kcata.org/procurement/regio ... consultant

Let's keep discussion of this RFP and resulting plan here, since it's more than just streetcar.
When will an attendance list for today’s pre-bid meeting be released?
Good question. I don't know we've ever been asked that before by the public, but certainly from respondents. You can make the request yourself at https://www.kcata.org/about_kcata/entries/contact_form

flyingember
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by flyingember »

There is a now a two year clock to think big on transit. The Senate flip makes it far more likely to get transit money from the federal budget.

If the regional plan isn't something big that we can do pieces of based on who is willing to provide a local match in 2021, there's a failure of planning.

It might be a good year to dust off the 2009 and 2014 rail plans and a MARC corridor BRT upgrade and see what can be done with them.
Bikes too. It doesn't take much money to add thousands of rental bikes to the city.

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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by DaveKCMO »

The regional actually did as well during the Trump administration and the last Congress as we ever did before because we had the right projects that scored well. They didn't make it easy, but we got everything we asked for once we had the right pieces in place. Odd, but true.

Everyone's anticipating a stimulus, but given how Republicans (and conservative Dems) normally treat stimulus I'm not anticipating a big influx of funding (although we will be prepared with project lists should that occur).

The biggest constraint is local funding. Always has been, always will be. Feds always require a match for capital and until COVID never really saw a role in funding operations.

flyingember
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by flyingember »

How many transit projects were submitted from 2017 to present?

How many projects could have been submitted but didn't have local funding lined up?
How many of these projects were outside KCMO itself?

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normalthings
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by normalthings »

flyingember wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 1:48 pm
How many transit projects were submitted from 2017 to present?

How many projects could have been submitted but didn't have local funding lined up?
How many of these projects were outside KCMO itself?
These are the 4 that I recall getting big federal grants. The new transit center might be the 5th.

Prospect MAX
UMKC Streetcar
River Streetcar
Dispatch Center Upgrade

Smart Moves 3 identifies Linwood/31st, Independence Ave., North Oak, and Metcalfe as rapid transit corridors.

2 of those 4 have BRT plans in the works. A 3rd would also qualify for federal funding for brt or tram. I assume Metcalfe would too. All these projects lack local funding to advance to construction anytime soon.

flyingember
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by flyingember »

So for a city with ~3000 miles of roads, in four years we've put forward projects for 20 miles of transit and none of it is service on a road without it

Back to the point on needing local funding for the first critical step

Fastracks as a single project had
122 miles of rail
18 miles of bus
renovating Union Station
21,000 parking spots

Although the Scope was cut the Houston metro rail single expansion was originally meant to be
26.6 miles of rail
4.8 miles of bus

Sound Transit saw three ballot items approved across 20 years as a single, unifed 25 year program (there's the benefits of long term planning I keep mentioning)
62 miles of rail to connect 16 cities with light rail and 12 with commuter rail
BRT and express bus connecting 30 cities

Four small projects is us not competing and it shows how successful cities don't have 10 year plans. They think very, very big.

They put things on a plan and build interest in doing them by making promises. Sound Transit didn't get three votes to pass by reducing service every ten years or so. Houston is still planning to build all their expansions, they aren't doing new studies and changing their plan.
Last edited by flyingember on Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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normalthings
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by normalthings »

flyingember wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:41 pm

Four small projects is us not competing and it shows how successful cities don't have 10 year plans. They think very, very big.
We have no regional funding mechanism. We need money to think big.

flyingember
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by flyingember »

normalthings wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:47 pm
flyingember wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:41 pm

Four small projects is us not competing and it shows how successful cities don't have 10 year plans. They think very, very big.
We have no regional funding mechanism. We need money to think big.
You're looking on the wrong side of chicken-egg.

No one so far has been willing to make a plan and promise that it will be built and maintained on the long term and be reliable. (frequency, speed and all those other basics)

We can talk about problems serving the suburbs all we want but we're having problems getting interest in serving the equivalent of the plaza. Tere's places ten minutes from downtown without bus service. That's how off our transit planning and funding is.
Last edited by flyingember on Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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normalthings
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by normalthings »

flyingember wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:59 pm
normalthings wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:47 pm
flyingember wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:41 pm

Four small projects is us not competing and it shows how successful cities don't have 10 year plans. They think very, very big.
We have no regional funding mechanism. We need money to think big.
You're looking on the wrong side of chicken-egg.

No one so far has been willing to make a plan and promise that it will be built and maintained on the long term.
Why would JoCo get behind a plan that isn't a 40-50 year promise.

We're willing to make them too, the streetcar track won't need a major renovation for about that long. The vehicles will last decades too.
Regional Investment District was an attempt to do something big and Kansas failed to advance it. It promised rail and couldn't get the support of their leaders.
Last edited by normalthings on Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

flyingember
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by flyingember »

So I did edit since your quote, but my point isn't about Kansas. My points stand if you don't cross the state line. We're still failing on planning and funding.

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normalthings
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by normalthings »

flyingember wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:07 pm
So I did edit since your quote, but my point isn't about Kansas. My points stand if you don't cross the state line. We're still failing on planning and funding.
i don't disagree with the the failure to fund. Current planning is aligned with the financial and political realities of the region. J.C.C.C. was another attempt to go big but it re-inforced that KC lacks the wealth to do very big projects even when the will is there.

In the early 2000s, Jackson County and Nashville-Davidson County had the same GDP. Today, Jackson's gdp is half of davidson county's despite more people.

Image

We are also limited in the taxes and rates we are able to introduce. Seems like we are limited to incremental changes and BRT with a little rail when possible.

flyingember
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by flyingember »

normalthings wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:23 pm

We are also limited in the taxes and rates we are able to introduce.
That never stopped someone from funding a public project

The Lowes hotel got a deal so good the 2020 budget included money from the general fund to pay for it

alejandro46
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by alejandro46 »

We need a dedicated regional transit funding and long term transit expansion plans. Smart Moves/Next Rail 2.0, same stuff Seattle, Nashville and Austin did.

Show the voters the routes, the estimate dates they will be implemented and how it will benefit them. The streetcar has shown to be such a successful development tool. We can use that to build out to areas studied in Next Rail and North Rail.

I don't know a ton about the bus system, like many others I don't ride the bus. It comes too infrequently to be useful for me compared to a car, I live on a bus route in the Northland, because my wide didn't want a historic home. I support having it as a safety net system for those who need to get around and don't have cars or can't drive and long term upgrade bus routes that have high ridership to BRT/Streetcar, like Independence Avenue for example.
Last edited by alejandro46 on Fri Jan 08, 2021 1:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Anthony_Hugo98
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by Anthony_Hugo98 »

alejandro46 wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 4:13 pm
We need a dedicated regional transit funding and long term transit expansion plans. Smart Moves/Next Rail 2.0, same stuff Seattle, Nashville and Austin did.

Show the voters the routes, the estimate dates they will be implemented and how it will benefit them. The streetcar has shown to be such a successful development tool. We can use that to build out to areas studied in Next Rail and North Rail.

I don't know a ton about the bus system, like many others I don't ride the bus. It comes to infrequently to be useful for me compared to a car. I support having it as a safety net system for those who need to get around and don't have cars or can't drive and long term upgrade bus routes that have highest ridership to BRT/Streetcar, like Independence Avenue for example.
Measure M in L.A. is also a solid idea to base a plan off of, given they had much more to start with and we’re further along, but their marketing for the measure was superb
For all my military brothers and sisters out there, thanks for paving the way, ill do my best! AIRBORNE!

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ToDactivist
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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by ToDactivist »

Like he (plural) said...plus sentiments change, not sure how long ago last presentation was. Show the benefit statement to the region again - think bigger to include satellite communities to get the cars off the hwys and try again? simultaneously hit that gas tax + mass transit allocation. Where there's a will there's a way, right? I hear talk of gas tax talk now in 2 states. hasnt been touched in 30 years AND we dont need more property tax hits. Make it a use tax = stick/carrot.

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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by alejandro46 »

I am really proud and happy how KCMO has become an example nationally with the way our streetcar system was built out and popular on both sides of the political aisle.

Going to look at another system, Phoenix, that received a grant today, they received $500m for a total $1.2BLN (!) 5,5 mile expansion of one line to South Mountain village in South Phoenix. Local match is provided by a 35 year, city wide dedicated transit plan. Many businesses were definitely against the expansion due to traffic interruptions. The area is not dense at all, with few to no multi-story buildings. It does intersect with a bus transit hub, and if you look at the route down Central Ave on Streetview is it ripe for densification and re-development if it has direct rail access to downtown.
https://www.phoenix.gov/streetssite/Med ... .21.17.pdf
Funding for Transportation 2050 is being generated by a 0.7 percent sales tax which became effective Jan. 1, 2016. This sales tax dedicates 7/10ths of a cent or 70 cents on a $100 purchase to fund the implementation of the Transportation 2050 plan. Over the life of the 35-year plan revenues from the sales tax are estimated to generate about $16.7 billion, or almost half of the plan’s overall cost. An additional $14.8 billion is projected to be generated from federal and county funds, passenger fares and other sources.


The pie charts represent how the Transportation 2050 sales tax revenues are programmed for distribution.
$16.7 Billion Distribution Breakdown

Image

Obviously I understand that this may not work for KCMO. Our sales taxes are already high compared to our peers. Just providing an example.

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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by DaveKCMO »

I don't think people realize how small our regional economy is compared to high-growth places like Austin, Phoenix, Seattle, and Nashville. Add in the political reality that not every jurisdiction will approve the same level of taxation -- I would imagine Platte and Johnson counties will be less aggressive than, say, Wyandotte and Jackson -- and you leave little room for operating support if you build a lot of rail (which requires a much higher federal funding standard for ridership and land use than BRT or basic bus).

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Re: Regional Transit Coordination

Post by earthling »

^Another factor is that a higher % of higher income in Seattle/Austin/Phoenix/etc are more likely to actually use transit. Outside streetcar, the Main MAX line is about all I see with what might classify as higher income riders, and it's not a high %.

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