Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Federal Funding Nixed for Winona Personal Rapid Transit Project

The Winona Daily News reports another big setback for the PRTistas:

Winona's request for nearly $25 million in federal funding to test a futuristic transit technology has been denied, city leaders confirmed Monday.

The city submitted the funding application in January to build a test lab for Personal Rapid Transit, which uses small, pod-like vehicles on guideways to shuttle passengers to their destinations. The money would have created the Winona Personal Rapid Transit Lab and Partnership Center, featuring a 0.9-mile elevated guideway. The grant would have also paid to build a testing laboratory on the main campus of Minnesota State College-Southeast Technical in Winona and fund it for four years.

Just one more big failure in a long list of flops and fiascos for the pod people - let's review the most recent:

Minnesota legislators tell pod people not to expect funding from the state at dismal MnDOT "workshop".

Taxi 2000 lobbyist and Bachmann pal Ed Cain also lobbied for the phony U.S. Navy Veterans Association charity.

ULTra PRT Heathrow Debut Postponed a Fourth Time.

No $25 million earmark for PRT pork project in Winona, Minnesota.

The Swedish/Korean PRT prototype malfunctioned recently in front of the media.

The Masdar PRT (actually computer-guided golf carts that follow magnets imbedded in the roadway) has been scaled way back, This setback got a mention in the NY Times and confirmed in this Bloomberg article.

The so-called Morgantown PRT (it's a mundane people-mover) was the subject of a student newspaper editorial after a malfunction created a "fireball" and filled a vehicle with smoke. The cost of fixing the Morgantown boondoggle is $93 million.

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