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3601Re: [carfree_cities] Killer streetcars?

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  • J.H. Crawford
    Aug 5, 2001
      Matt Hohmeister said:

      >Streetcar: assuming that a streetcar comes every two minutes at the
      >minimum, you have two minutes during which you are *guaranteed* that
      >you can step into the track without being hit by a streetcar. Do y'all
      >think that 30 seconds of blinking-light warning is enough to tell
      >people to not cross the track? Safety-wise, considering how quickly the
      >streetcars pass through, and how frequently they come, there would be
      >less temptation to sprint across the track on a don't-walk light to
      >catch the approaching streetcar--just wait two minutes. Go to an
      >American city with a shoddy bus system, and you'll see what I mean:
      >people sprinting into 5 lanes of traffic to catch a bus that won't be
      >by for another hour.

      It has to be said that here in Amsterdam, pedestrians are struck
      by trams on occasion, especially tourists, who are not accustomed
      to their routes. The reference design presented in the book calls
      for the central boulevard to be split if trams are to be used,
      so each half of the boulevard has a single track with trams
      running in only one direction. This eliminates the risk of crossing
      behind a passing tram only to blunder into a second, oncoming
      tram on the other track.

      >There's no such thing as completely fool-proof, and people have before
      >been killed by streetcars (but not nearly as much as by cars). This is
      >a tragic happening, and I would like to see as little as possible

      Generally, the risk is relatively low and considered acceptable.
      I still prefer metros, as they eliminate both this risk and
      the noise that even the quietest trams will make. (Alas, the
      trams here in Amsterdam are incredibly noisy due to poor

      >Someone who's been to Strasbourg and used EuroTram, please answer this:
      >looking at the picture of it at http://www.carfree.com/pax_trans.html,
      >there is a slight curb to the track, much like on regular roads.

      It's actually higher, about 14 inches (36 cm or so).

      >there any wheelchair cuts along the way to allow wheelchairs,
      >strollers, bicycles, and the elderly to cross?

      I'm not sure, but I don't think so. The boarding platforms
      are fairly short, so it's possible to go around one end or the

      >And what kind of warning
      >do they have to an oncoming streetcar?

      Don't recall, I'm afraid.

      -- ### --

      J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
      postmaster@... Carfree.com
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