Tuesday, October 5, 2010

City Pages: "Tim Pawlenty Keeps Spending Money on Personal Rapid Transit"

City Pages Blotter:

The Pawlenty administration has approved at least $150,000 since the start of the year on personal rapid transit system studies.

That's despite the fact that key state lawmakers have told MnDOT not to waste taxpayer dollars on PRT and podcars.

Isn't it usually the governor who brags about stopping the Legislature from spending money on pointless projects during tough economic times?

Nevertheless, according to an audit obtained by City Pages, the state now has three contracts with the University of Minnesota to explore the technology.

The Humphrey Institute: $46,000 to study PRT statewide.

The Humphrey Instutute: $19,000 to study PRT at Minneapolis St. Paul airport

The Center for Transportation Studies: $35,509 for PRT workshops in Rochester and Minneapolis

Read the whole thing.

Just another example of how PRT wastes time and money. Here are more recent examples PRT fiascos:

PRT Conference Newsletter & Website Features PRT Plan by Convicted Felon.

PRT is so not happening at Heathrow.

Daventry says "Pods Off!".

Video: Bill James Pitches Jpods Resolution to Hennepin County.

Federal Funding Nixed for Winona Personal Rapid Transit Project

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. and confirmed again in the UAE National: "Commercial electric cars replace transport pods plan".

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.