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The idea of conveying large groups of people via transit is outdated, Mikosza said, as most people want flexibility and comfort when travelling.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

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