Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Personal Rapid Transit Pod People Invade Mexico

More locomotion lunacy from the PRT Consulting blog about a Mexican PRT project called Modutram:

A unique operational feature is that the vehicles will keep moving slowly through stations without completely stopping. This operation has proved successful when tested with handicapped passengers.

Here's a video with an annoying soundtrack showing a scale model of the Modutram pod in action. Watch as the white pod noisily jerks while switching toward the end - hilarious!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Ten Years Ago: Taxi 2000 Corporation's Business Plan

Last month, the Fridley Patch had an article about the Taxi 2000 Corporation. In the article, one of the investors described the would-be pod vendor as "moribund".

Ten years ago this month, January 31, 2002 to be exact, Taxi 2000 had the following "Business Plan" on its website - it's still available on the Wayback Machine:

The Problem We Propose to Solve

A major problem cities face today is congestion. Public opinion surveys confirm that, in the eyes of city dwellers, congestion often is perceived as the most important urban problem. Current modes of public transit date back to the nineteenth century. They offer poor levels of service and consume tens of billions of dollars in operating subsidies. The huge costs to build rail systems generally result in transit systems that connect only a few origins and destinations, and do not induce significant ridership because they are unable to compete with the convenience and flexibility of autos. This further exacerbates the need for greater government subsidies. The bottom line of current urban public transit is huge costs and poor service. This is the reason why public officials are not able to provide relief for the problem. No matter how much public investment flows to conventional public transport, the main problem – congestion – will remain if a new solution is not found.

What Is PRT?

PRT (Personal Rapid Transit) is a system with small driverless vehicles running on demand on a guideway, offering individual trips without stops. PRT has no timetables and no fixed routes. The vehicles wait at stations for passengers, departing when a passenger boards. He or she travels alone or with companions of choice. The vehicle’s computer determines the most rapid route and the vehicle makes no stops until it has reached its destination, resulting in consistently short travel time. These service characteristics are comparable to an automobile. In downtown areas PRT travel times will be much less than travel by automobile or walking, resulting in high PRT ridership.

Why Taxi 2000?

Taxi 2000 (PRT) technology is an elaborate creation utilizing “least-cost strategy”. Installation costs are a fraction of any existing rail technology. Operating costs are well below any current mode of public transit (including buses). As a result, Taxi 2000 PRT can provide much more comprehensive system networks per dollar of capital investment.

axi 2000 PRT offers compact unobtrusive elevated guideways carrying small-scale vehicles with seating for up to three people. The system is fully automated. Modular stations may be stand-alone or due to their small size located in commercial buildings, hotels or parking ramps. Station density in the network is very high, resulting in a much higher level of rider convenience at both ends of the ride. All rides are private, on-demand twenty-four hours per day, direct to destination without transfer.

Large Taxi 2000 PRT systems run at a profit. This allows for system network expansion funded by system profits. Government funds are not necessary for installation or subsidizing operation. Thus, public entities or private interests may own and operate systems.

Taxi 2000 Corporation will receive revenue from two primary streams, system installation management fees and control system software leases. Revenue flowing from secondary sources will include training fees for system personnel, system operation fees, if contracted to operate systems, and ownership of some systems.

The Market

The market for Taxi 2000 PRT is several hundred billion dollars worldwide. On a weekly basis we receive application inquiries from throughout the world (every continent except Antarctica). Taxi 2000 currently enjoys broad-based support from citizen groups throughout the U.S.

Whoa! "broad-based support from citizen groups" REALLY? I don't recall any of that support.

Marketing Strategy

Taxi 2000 PRT will be marketed to both public and private entities. The huge cost advantage in installation and operations, as well as a much higher level of service, will allow us to successfully compete against currently vested urban transit interests. The greatest obstacle to overcome is institutional resistance to change, and heavy lobbying by existing transit systems and the consulting engineering firms supporting them.

We will focus our educational and sales campaigns on communities with the greatest potential for early applications. This effort will be directed toward the general population, citizens groups, legislators, government officials and business interests. The goal is to impart a thorough understanding of Taxi 2000 technology and its cost effectiveness. Our application sales engineers, some of the best in the world, will benchmark our technology against the competition and demonstrate its economic feasibility in a variety of environments. Many of our early deployment opportunities will be in situations where bus and rail systems are unworkable as solutions.

We will also create partnerships with several of the major transportation engineering-consulting firms in the world

Here the "Business Plan" includes the lengthy bios of J. Edward Anderson, A. Scheffer Lang and Raymond A. MacDonald. Then it gets around to... the money:

The Taxi 2000 business plan requires funding of twenty-five million dollars to be raised in successive rounds over a thirty-six month period. The funds will be used for completing specifications, building of the test track facilities, world-class procurement and marketing.

Exit Strategy

The opportunity for investor exit should occur between months 54 and 72. At this juncture, Taxi 2000 should have a strong backlog of booked sales, as well as a substantial number of highly interested potential customers. Initial system installations should be complete and operating, with other systems under construction.

Two potential opportunities for investor exit will be an IPO or a strategic acquisition by a large corporate interest. The strategic acquisition of the investor position would be the more likely scenario but this would be determined by the climate of the public equity markets at that time.

Interesting - a business plan with an "Exit Strategy"?.... anyways, according to Mpls/St. Paul Business Journal:

The firm has raised $2 million in a $24 million fund-raising effort to pay for the testing facility and other corporate needs, according to SEC filings and city documents.

Then there was that nasty lawsuit in 2005 and multiple, failed attempts to grab some taxpayers' money. I wonder how those early investors feel now?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Personal Rapid Transit is So Not Happening in Cincinnati

The pod people are always saying PRT is happening somewhere - the latest is Amritsar, India. But the pod hypster at FastCoExist.com acknowledged the gazillions of previously hyped PRT projects that fizzled:

That said, it should be noted that projects like this have a way of getting… derailed.

And the Amritsar PRT project will also fade away. I really doubt they will be able to reclaim the cost of construction when there are other, less expensive ways to go from the train station to the city's main attraction:

An auto-rickshaw from the train station to the temple should cost around Rs 20, while a cycle-rickshaw will run about Rs 30.

There is a free bus service from the train station to the golden temple run by Golden Temple trust. It drops you right at the accommodation booking office of the Golden Temple where you can get double bed room for Rs. 100 per day.

One thing is for certain, after the Amritsar pod project fails, the pod people will never admit the failure or why it failed.

Consider the Skyloop PRT which was supposed to happen in Cincinnati. The project is dead as a door nail and its would-be supplier Taxi 2000 was recently described as "moribund" by a Taxi 2000 shareholder.

But the Skyloop website is still up and apparently being used as "Google-bait" to boost the "Google-iciousness" of lawyers, handymen and home renovation and roofing contractors. The "Link Up With Skyloop" page is especially hilarious (I replaced the links with boldface):

While PRT was one of the moving technologies considered for the downtown area in the 2000-1 Central Area Loop Study (CALS) funded by a local car loan group, it was ultimately rejected at that time because of a better cheap auto insurance rate (which is limited to the official new car list) that seemed to fit better with our systems according to www.autoinsurancerates.com. Numerous technical questions regarding PRT could not be answered due to the lack of a working system. However, the Study determined that none of the other technologies studied would generate enough riders to have any hope of being an economic success. Only PRT offered the speed and convenience to get enough people, like Adam Klein eMusic CEO, Rick Kimball Goldman Sachs, and others out of their cars to make any difference in the traffic pattern in the Study area. As the rates on car insurance quotes (another auto insurance quotes resource) continue to increase so does the chances that more people will turn to transit like Taxi Los Angeles. The results of the CALS ridership study performed by Parsons-Brinckerhoff showed that PRT would generate nearly 5 times the weekday ridership of the next best alternative and nearly 12 times the number of new transit trips. A depot is expected to go in near Park West Gallery in the downtown area.

Since 2002 the H.A.H (i.e. hire a handyman) has been monitoring the development of PRT in the USA, England, Sweden, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Working systems are being built now in England and Sweden with the help of the Gantry Crane, and more building may occur soon in the UAE.

Recently, an ancient homemade Skyloop PRT model showed up at the Crystal Court in Minneapolis.

The streetcar line that the Skyloop pod people opposed is slowly making progress. It's too bad the pod people insisted everyone waste all that time and money on the dumb pods. You can read the 2001 OKI Central Loop study that settled the the pods vs rail transit debate in Cincinnati.

The silly Skyloop model (click on it to make it bigger):

Bowling Green Daily News - 6/29/1997 (click on article to make it bigger):

Cincinnati could have had this years ago:

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Burnaby Personal Rapid Transit booster claims PRT is "one of the nails in their socialist transit coffin."

From the PRT Forum:

MISTER, which most on the site are familiar with, uses supported pods, tried to get in the line-up, but its proposal rejected because it arrived a day late (and perhaps a dollar short, since MR offered to built it solely as a private transit system – meaning no funding whatever from the government). Unfortunately, the local press portrayed it as a 'single rider rail car”, which it most definitely was not.

In another post, the pod booster becomes more... emphatic:

Maybe I should clarify. It wasn't a day late. I personally delivered MR's proposal and can speak personally that it arrived BEFORE the deadline. Jack (Slade) pegged it right:“They can ...make anything appear late, mis-filed, or even lost”. And in this case, they did. And, as I pointed out, sanitized any mention of PRT as an option from their site, save CH2H Hill's vague mention -- and dismissal.

As for PRT's strengths and point-to-point, a major point in MR's proposal was that instead of point-to-point and merely serving the university community, it could make numerous stops – not just around the university – and include the surrounding community to boot. That's what I call a plus – not a negative! As for CH2M Hill having "gained a good understanding of PRT", please. They're as biased as biased can be. I had a similar experience with it/them at Salt Lake City and a dose of the same contemptuousness in considering it as an option in an area called Sugarhouse.

Someone's going to give those guys a comeupins, and I'm thinking of electing myself. Back to Translink, though, interesting that the project is being shelved, ostensibly because of the high cost: $156 million. I'm wondering if the thought of being sued by those who would be subjected to the endless stream of peeping toms on the overflights was also considered. I love this Portland resident's exercise of his First Amendment right [link not safe for work].

As for Jack's comment: “How can anybody refuse a proposal that's free”. Dead on. What part of FREE doesn't Translink understand? Or want to. Maybe what Translink and other transit authorities really do understand is that PRT -- or anything else that can be privately run -- is one of the nails in their socialist transit coffin.

As for 2G and your goal of 2.5 seconds, I'm reminded that Cabinentaxi demonstrated .5 seconds back in the 1970s, and while I congratulate you for getting it actually running, I hardly categorize it in the same league as MISTER or any other suspended form of transit. Perhaps it's time to re-categorize PRT into the two camps it actually is.

Dave Brough

Yup, talk to a PRT promoter for more than a few minutes, then the right-wing, libertarian jargon starts to burble out. The pod people like to talk about how PRT can pay for itself, but if you ask how, they don't have a clue.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Another Ridiculous Personal Rapid Transit Proposal Rejected

Ollie Mikosza, the Polish inventor and promoter of a ridiculous hanging pod PRT systems MISTER, is whining that his proposal was rejected because he turned it in late (Barnaby Now):

The idea of conveying large groups of people via transit is outdated, Mikosza said, as most people want flexibility and comfort when travelling.

The MISTER system would be operated on a private commercial basis, according to Mikosza, and wouldn't cost TransLink any money to run.

The City of Burnaby would be offered a five percent shareholder stake in the operation, and a seat on the board of directors, he added.

Because the system would require fewer materials than a gondola system, it would be cheaper to build, Mikosza said.

The MISTER plan would cost about $50 million to build, he said.

The gondola project is estimated at $70 million, according to TransLink.

Mikosza was upset, and said that his project wasn't considered in the business case stage of the project, because his application to manage the business case arrived late.

The pod people are always pretending to be victims. In this case as in others, the problem is PRT is not what the project calls for. Here is an evaluation of PRT for the project by CH2MHIll (PDF):

5.3.7 Personal Rapid Transit (PRT)


Personal rapid transit is based on small, automated vehicles operating on a dedicated network of guideways. The premise of these systems is that they can provide high frequency, on-demand service with a high degree of privacy given the small vehicles and, ideally, point-to-point service without intermediate stops. They are meant to function like a horizontal elevator and provide a level of service like that of a private automobile but as a public transit service. Relatively few PRT systems are in regular operation with the best known one being in Morgantown, West Virginia. New systems have recently opened in Masdar City, UAE; and a prototype as a parking shuttle at London’s Heathrow Airport.


Very few PRT systems are in operation and all are unique so it is difficult to identify “typical” characteristics. PRT systems are optimally deployed where there is moderate demand among a group of origins and destinations, which is not the case for this higher volume, point-to-point application. The capacity required here is also approaching the limit of what has been identified as reasonable for many systems, and likely exceeds it. Further, PRT systems need alignments (typically elevated) that are independent of other traffic and so incur surface impacts, albeit these are intended to be a lower scale than for other ground-level technologies.


PRT is not considered suitable for this application as the ridership demand is higher than such systems are designed for and the point-to-point nature of demand would not play to PRT’s strengths.

"Relatively few PRT systems are in regular operation with the best known one being in Morgantown, West Virginia." which often experiences breakdowns and electrical fires.

For laughs, watch this hilarious MISTER PRT video:

Fire Caused Chaos on the WVU Personal Rapid Transit

Yesterday, I wrote that the safety problems of the WVU PRT are the result of WVU's institutional support and cult-like adherence to the PRT ideology that can admit no fault to an obviously, deeply flawed concept:

...the WVU PRT was created to monkey-wrench conventional modes of transit and will be expected to function as a paragon of "gadgetbahn" for as long as they can keep it going.

It is about the triumph of anti-transit ideology and futuristic fantasies over reality and common sense.

As new information becomes available about this recent incident, it will be interesting to see if PRT boosters at West Virginia University will continue to "showcase" the deeply flawed and dangerous system as "the wave of the future."

From The Daily Athenaeum article titled "Electrical fire causes PRT shutdown":

The West Virginia University Personal Rapid Transit system shut down Wednesday due to an electrical fire in the PRT substation between the Creative Arts Center and the Engineering PRT station around 12:30 p.m.

"They were starting to notice anomalies – certain things stopping and (PRT officials) couldn't figure out why," said WVU spokeswoman Diana Mazzella. "Then they discovered the fire, and the system was immediately shut down."

The fire then spread to another break cabinet, according to Associate Director of PRT Administration Arlie Forman.
The Morgantown Fire Department responded to the fire, Mazzella said.

For the students, the experience was chaotic and terrifying:

Max Carozza, a senior finance student, said he was stuck on the PRT for 30 minutes on the track along Beechurst Avenue.

"The lights flickered, and it shut off," he said. "It slowly died. The PRT voice told us to hang tight."

PRT workers then located the car and led the seven people on the PRT tracks to the Beechurst PRT station.

Devin Novak, a sophomore nursing student, said she waited on the PRT for an hour before she was rescued.

"They said it took so long because a girl was claustrophobic and they needed an ambulance for her," Novak said.

Novak asid that before being rescued, another student on the PRT tried to pry the door open herself, but was quickly told over the car's intercom not to proceed.

"You could tell something bad was happening," she said.

After walking to the Seneca Center area on the PRT track, Novak said she waited for 20 minutes to catch a bus before calling a friend to get picked up.

"All of the buses were crazy because there were so many people leaving," she said.

The obvious solution is to shut the WVU PRT down for good and rely on proven, safer modes of transit.

It will also be interesting to see whether the mainstream media continues to publish puff pieces about the Morgantown PRT. Here is a re-post of my 2007 DMO post "New York Times Publishes Puff Piece on the WVU PRT":


In May, I predicted that Mark Olson's pals at the Advanced Transit Association (ATRA) would crank up the PRT publicity machine as a preemptive whitewash for Olson's role in the PRT scam in time for his upcoming trial.

Today, the New York Times published yet another puff piece about the Morgantown PRT... Google News has links to the others.

The Morgantown PRT is an expensive flop. I have collected stories about how students and faculty hate the Morgantown PRT because it is so unreliable and it fries squirrels.

Here's the Times article:

City’s White Elephant Now Looks Like a Transit Workhorse


MORGANTOWN, W.Va., June 4 — During its troubled years of construction and testing in the early 1970s, the Personal Rapid Transit system that snakes through this hilly college town was derided as a fiasco and a waste of money that perhaps should be dynamited rather than finished.

...the article should have stopped there, but it continues with the traditional fluff we've seen in articles about PRT over the years... let's skip to Larry Fabian's quote in the Times:

“This is the only operating P.R.T. system in the world,” said Larry Fabian, treasurer of the Advanced Transit Association, an organization based in Virginia that promotes advanced rapid transit technologies and held a conference in May in Morgantown. “After more than 30 years, it’s still unique.”

... The Times says Fabian is the treasuerer for ATRA, but in a similar, May 31st puff piece, the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, said Fabian was the "director" of ATRA:

"There are 130 automated systems worldwide, but only one like this," said Lawrence Fabian of Boston, director of the Advanced Transit Association, which deals with futuristic transit programs. "Its characteristics are unique,"

...and why is the WVU Morgantown PRT "unique"? The Times has part of the the answer:

But it is also expensive.

University and local government officials realize they are not likely to get the federal government to finance the expansion, as it did the original project. They are talking about coming up with local and state financing.

... can't get Federal money? That's pathetic when you consider that the Senator representing West Virginia is Robert Byrd.... it's probably more like hardly any transportation experts think the WVU PRT is worth expanding... the Times quotes one expert saying that:

“The infrastructure requirements are such that it is not realistic to think it could be adopted in highly developed U.S. cities,” Jonathan E. D. Richmond, a transportation expert, said in an e-mail message from Singapore, where he is advising the government.

...there's more fluff in the Times article about ridership etc. and then there's this bit of reality thrown in at the end:

Still, it does not run often enough for people who do not attend the university or work there.

“There’s a real problem,” said Bruce Summers, 64, who has lived in Morgantown for 34 years and works downtown. “When the university is not in session, it’s closed. You can’t rely on it. If you want to get downtown people to use it, you’ve got to do it another way.”

... wait, didn't the article start off by saying the Morgantown PRT was reliable? Recently, the new Mayor of Kansas City had this to say about the Morgantown PRT:

Mark Funkhouser used to ride West Virginia University's Personal Rapid Transit system, which he recalled "was broken down half the time."

Now he'll help develop a light rail system for Kansas City, Mo., population 450,000.

...Funkhouser was also quoted saying the WVU PRT "wasn't really mass transit".

So, why did the Times run this puff piece for PRT? Does all this recent PRT publicity have something to do with Rep. Mark Olson's trial?

ATRA's Larry Fabian, who is quoted in these puff pieces sent me a gloating e-mail after Rep. Mark Olson and Michele Bachmann won last November:

How is that you haven't posted the results of Tuesday's elections yet?

Bucking the Democrat thumping, Minnesota's two PRTistias were reelected, I see. Wouldn't honesty urge you to post that on your lovely website?

Larry Fabian
The One Who You So Kindly Told to %#$@ Off

Larry Fabian has a company that promotes various silly PRT projects like Higherway PRT and Ed Anderson's PRT International (no website yet).

Is it possible that Olson delayed his trial until all this favorable publicity aboout his pet project was published?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Ken Avidor agrees with professionals who say that WVU PRT isn't Personal Rapid Transit but AGT (automated Group Transport.


In 2011, there was yet another puff piece about the Morgantown PRT in Governing Magazine titled "America’s One and Only Personal Rapid Transit System". The article abounds with irony:

In 1995, the computer control system was upgraded and now work is under way to modernize the individual control and propulsion systems in each of the 71 cars that remain in service. The PRT maintenance crew is proud of the fact that of the 80 million passengers who have ridden on the PRT since its start, no serious injuries or fatalities have occurred.

As afternoon traffic builds on the local streets, slowing movement to a crawl, the PRT vehicles continue to glide past quietly and efficiently. “The Morgantown PRT stands as an example of how cities can better cope with pollution, traffic and environmental demands,” Foreman says.

UPDATE: This video shows PRT promoter Larry Fabian talking proudly about the WVU PRT:

Note the emphasis on safety:

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Another WVU Personal Rapid Transit Electrical Fire

Press Release via WVU Today:

An electrical fire in a Personal Rapid Transit substation at West Virginia University has interrupted service to passengers.

Some time after noon, an electrical fire disrupted power to the PRT system. The fire was extinguished and the damage is being assessed. All passengers have been evacuated from the PRT.

The exact cause of the fire is being determined, but it appears to be electrical in nature. Passengers were in no immediate danger and no injuries have been reported.

PRT employees are working to get the system operational by 5 p.m. today (Wednesday, Jan. 11), according to Hugh Kierig, director of Transportation and Parking at WVU.

While the PRT is out of service, students, faculty and staff may use the Mountain Line bus service or the WVU shuttles that have been provided for use between PRT stations. Those with WVU ID’s may ride the Mountain Line for free.

Nothing new - this is from a 2010 editorial in the WVU The Daily Athenaeum:

t's pretty safe to say anyone who has ridden West Virginia University's PRT system has some kind of horror story.
Typically, it's the same complaint – it breaks down or it's is late getting to one station over another. However, recent incidents have proven to be more serious.

We've had multiple reports from riders about seeing a PRT car filled with smoke and a fire erupting in one of the cars Thursday.
Students in the car were then forced to walk the tracks as the system came to a complete stop – a safeguard for such incidents.
However, these incidents have been downplayed by the University.

The issues were attributed to "minor problems" and "arching electrical phases on track" that "caused a flash and cloud of smoke," according to Director of Transportation and Parking Hugh Kierig, by way of Becky Lofstead, assistant vice president for University Communications.

As reported in Monday's edition of The Daily Athenaeum, University spokesman John Bolt said there had been several electrical problems but none were major.

The PRT is synonymous with its problems, despite continual reassurances from University-provided statistics of high reliability and constant uptime.

The system is a flawed behemoth. There isn't enough money to completely overhaul the system, despite constant funding being poured into it for upgrades.

Most recently, the University closed the system for an entire summer, spending $2.5 million on track and system issues.
These upgrades weren't designed to fix all issues, and they haven't.

This is what I wrote back in 2010 about the so-called WVU PRT:

The PRT hucksters will often cite the so-called West Virginia University's Personal Rapid Transit in Morgantown as a successful example of PRT "technology":

A heavy weight PRT network opened in Morgantown, WV in 1975 and has delivered 110 million injury-free passenger miles.

But the WVU PRT is neither PRT (it's really an ordinary, automated people-mover similar to what you see in airports) or successful.

The Morgantown Personal Rapid Transit breaks down so often, the University has a Twitter account that keeps track of the breakdowns for students.

In an editorial published Monday in the Daily Athenaeum titled "The unreliable PRT says a lot about this University" WVU Graduate student Michael Levy tells the truth about the deeply flawed system:

In the best of times, I can leave my office in LSB 20 minutes before class starts in Evansdale and be on time. That makes a total round-trip travel time of 40 minutes.

That's certainly not convenient, and multiplied across everyone who uses the PRT, it's a huge inefficiency, but it's not totally unreasonable.

However, at least three times already this semester, my daily PRT adventure to Evansdale has been delayed by more than 15 minutes.

I'm not talking about times when the platform is extra full, and it takes a couple cars to get going. Three times in the first four weeks of the semester, the PRT has been down when I tried to use it. Each time, I end up walking into class with my head hung low, muttering an apology for being late. Sometimes I'll add, "Sorry, the PRT was down," but it feels like such a cliched, used-up, one-size-fits-all excuse that it's not even worth saying.

Michael Levy goes on to describe how frequent delays cause problems with recording student attendence. But, he is also concerned about the ecological cost:

Last week, a resource management professor had a meeting with a consulting firm downtown.
Being ecologically minded, he decided to take the PRT instead of driving.

But the PRT was down, and he showed up 20 minutes late, uttering the same excuse that I'm sure he's so tired of hearing from students.

As a result of this, people are more likely to drive, even when traveling a route serviced by the PRT. And the traffic and the air pollution get even worse.

Just a couple of years ago, the PRT received around $1.5 million to improve efficiency and reduce downtime. Was it even worse before that?

That the PRT is broken doesn't just mean reduced efficiency on campus.

Students learn more from what they see than what they're told. The PRT sets an example of a system that works most of the time, but it can't be depended on. Is that what we want to instill in our students?

Levy pleads with the administration:

Whatever it will take, WVU needs to do an honest accounting of the problem and figure out how to address the issue.

Sorry Mr. Levy, they won't.

The reason is the WVU PRT was created to monkey-wrench conventional modes of transit and will be expected to function as a paragon of "gadgetbahn" for as long as they can keep it going.

It is about the triumph of anti-transit ideology and futuristic fantasies over reality and common sense.

See also: Editorial - Morgantown PRT "Horror Story" & "Flawed Behemoth"

Friday, January 6, 2012

Another Bogus Personal Rapid Transit Project Bites the Dust

A PRT project in India has been cancelled.

Cogeneration & On-Site Power Production Magazine says Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT) won't have pods:

GIFT had made changes to the original plan, which had proposed subterranean roads and four levels of underground parking, leaving the surface purely for pedestrians. It had also envisaged a Personal Rapid Transit System similar to the one operational at London's Heathrow airport and one planned for Amritsar. Now, the parking will be on the surface since underground parking and roads are too expensive.

The Personal Mass Rapid Transit System has been dropped as the Metro would come right up to GIFT. However, cars will remain in the periphery as residents and visitors will use district-cooled, moving walkways to get to the city centre. The city is being planned in such a way that future planners do not have to dig for 100 years.

I expect the much ballyhooed (and protested) PRT project in Amritsar to get canned too. Fairwood India still has PRT on its GIFT page.