Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Personal Rapid Transit in Indianapolis

In the sidebar on the right, you will see an incomplete list of cities that have a history that includes the Personal Rapid Transit boondoggle. Until now, I saw no reason to include Indianapolis because I did not have access to primary source material. Thanks to the wonderful librarians at the Indianapolis Public Library, I was able to access a few articles (scroll down past the video) about an attempt by PRT promoters in the Indiana State Assembly to fund the planning and building of a German version of PRT, Cabinentaxi in the late 1970's in the Circle City. The story is a bit murky after all these years, but it appears there were two prominent PRT promoters in the Indiana State Assembly who were able to leverage funding for the project.

 J. Edward Anderson:

In the late 1970's, through vigorous efforts of two Indiana legislators, Dr. Ned Lamkin and Richard Doyle, the Indiana Assembly appropriated $300,000 for a study of automated transit in Indianapolis including PRT. This study has been mentioned above in the discussion of Cabinentaxi. 
Cabinentaxi's German entity appeared to have gone kaput in the late 1970's, but continued to exist in typical pod-proselytizing-zombie-mode in Detroit, causing trouble for reality-based Michigan transit advocates. The demise of Cabinentaxi, appeared to end the chances of pods zooming around Indy as they do in this wacky video:

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