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7029Re: Fwd: [UrbanMaglev] "A Streetcar Named Disaster" HoustonReview 2/4 (at-grade LRT vs. ..)

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  • Matt Hohmeister
    Mar 9, 2004
      This reminds me of New Orleans, where the streetcars of an era past not only cross
      streets, but travel in the same lanes as vehicles. In the Garden District, I have seen people
      riding bicycles and jogging on the streetcar tracks--knowing, of course, to get out of the
      way if they see a streetcar coming. Does anyone have New Orleans accident figures?

      Oh--I looked at the list of Houston tram accidents, and saw no pedestrain or cyclist
      accidents. Could this be because a pedestrian or cyclist is not belted into a seat and can
      more effectively look both ways before crossing the tracks? Just a thought.

      --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "J.H. Crawford" <mailbox@c...> wrote:
      >
      > Hi All,
      >
      > Regarding the Houston issue, notice that nearly all the
      > crashes involve cars turning left. The only way to tackle
      > this problem is to forbid all left turns across the
      > tracks, which, I believe, run in a center reservation.
      > Drivers are literally getting blind-sided, and the
      > signalling is always a bit confusing in the case of
      > left-turn-on-arrow-only. Colorblind drivers may be
      > seeing a red arrow and thinking it's green. (I know
      > there aren't supposed to BE colorblind drivers, but
      > I'll bet there are plenty in America, where it's drive
      > or die.)
      >
      > Drivers would get used to the idea that you can NEVER
      > turn left across the tram tracks. Instead, they will
      > have to go around the block and approach straight on,
      > when they will be able to cope with the standard traffic
      > signal, which should see them safely across the tracsk.
      > Their sight lines are good and mirrors aren't needed.
      >
      > If this doesn't work, then they will have to physically
      > block all crossing traffic and provide some over- or
      > underpasses to get cars across the tracks.
      >
      > Remember that in Zurich, the decision was made to get
      > cars off the streets where they were interfering with
      > the trams. Gotta get your priorities straight. This is
      > going to be difficult in Houston.
      >
      > Regards,
      >
      >
      >
      > -- ### --
      >
      > J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
      > mailbox@c... http://www.carfree.com
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