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.

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