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Re: Seattle monorail.

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  • Mike Lacey
    ... conclusion, ... Agreed, if grade seperation is necessary and viable, then underground is always the way to go ... we re ... Would you allow that there is
    Message 1 of 9 , Nov 1, 2000
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      --- In carfree_cities@egroups.com, "J.H. Crawford" <postmaster@c...>
      wrote:
      > I've never resolved this in my own mind and have come to the
      conclusion,
      > "it depends." In some situations, street-level trams work fine,
      > are reasonably quiet, and fairly safe. In bigger cities, though,
      > I tend to think that we should be subways, not trams. The argument
      > is especially strong if you're building a new city, because the
      > costs of construction can be kept under control.

      Agreed, if grade seperation is necessary and viable, then underground
      is always the way to go

      > Modern trams are
      > mostly much noiser than necessary--listen to a 1935 PCC streetcar
      > in good working order, especially the slightly later "all electric"
      > version that had no compressed air system at all. Noise is a major
      > issue, and we shouldn't forget about it just to save some money--
      we're
      > going to be living with the noise "forever."

      Would you allow that there is good noise and bad noise? The resonant
      ringing of cathedral bells or the moan of a lonely foghorn are man-
      made and yet, to my ear beautiful. Maybe the same could be said of
      the whirring of a PCC streetcar or the rattle of an old SF cable car.

      MIke
    • J.H. Crawford
      ... It s a matter of definition. To me, noise is any sound that I find irritating. Not everybody agrees what constitutes noise, and different sounds can be
      Message 2 of 9 , Nov 2, 2000
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        Mike Lacey replied:

        >> Modern trams are
        >> mostly much noiser than necessary--listen to a 1935 PCC streetcar
        >> in good working order, especially the slightly later "all electric"
        >> version that had no compressed air system at all. Noise is a major
        >> issue, and we shouldn't forget about it just to save some money--
        >> we're going to be living with the noise "forever."

        >Would you allow that there is good noise and bad noise?

        It's a matter of definition. To me, "noise" is any sound that
        I find irritating. Not everybody agrees what constitutes noise,
        and different sounds can be noise or not at different times
        and places. One of the nicest things about Venice is its acoustic
        environment. It isn't silent in Venice, but the sounds are not
        what we're used to: bells tolling the hour, the clatter of
        footsteps, porters whistling as they work, gondoliers singing
        to their customers, chattering tourists, the clink of tableware
        at an outdoor restaurant. In some places and at some times, you'll
        hear muted diesel engines in boats, which I'd call noise, although
        it doesn't especially bother me.

        A friend spent a night walking through Venice and tells of walking
        into the Piazza San Marco at about 4 in the morning and hearing
        someone playing the harmonica. Then someone else with a harmonica
        in a different key walked into the plaza and started working
        out a harmony with the other player. Where else in the world
        could that happen?

        >The resonant
        >ringing of cathedral bells or the moan of a lonely foghorn are man-
        >made and yet, to my ear beautiful.

        Try living next to a fog horn in Maine. You'd grow to hate it.
        But I agree--if the foghorn is distant and doesn't blow all
        of the time, it can be an addition, not a liability. Personally,
        I love having a clock ringing the hours, if it's not too loud.

        >Maybe the same could be said of
        >the whirring of a PCC streetcar or the rattle of an old SF cable car.

        The clatter of the controllers on a PCC car don't bother me at
        all. The screeching of wheels going around a tight curve bothers
        me always--the noise can damage hearing in some places. People
        in SF were bothered by the increased noise that the cable car shivs
        made after the reconstruction of the system in the 1980s, although
        I expect that the problems have long since been fixed.

        In short, sound is one of the most imporant variables in the
        local environment, one that we would do well to pay more attention
        to in designing cities. Same goes for smells.



        ###

        J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
        postmaster@... Carfree.com
      • Philip D Riggs
        The noises frustrating me most these days are loud car radios and overly loud motorcycles. When the bass of a car system can rattle my windows from 300 feet
        Message 3 of 9 , Nov 2, 2000
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          The noises frustrating me most these days are loud car radios and overly
          loud motorcycles. When the bass of a car system can rattle my windows
          from 300 feet away it is excessive. And the high pitch whine of a
          motorcycle zooming from a stop sign raises my anxiety level. I wish every
          city in the US would adopt some sort of noise pollution. Has Europe
          addressed these problems, or are Europeans more conscious of the bother
          these things cause? I think one of the side benefits of the car is the
          isolation from the problems they cause. Concern for neighbor has
          disappeared from America. I laugh when I hear G. Bush's plan for public
          support of social programs. Nobody cares about the people around them
          when they are isolated from the problems of the poor, sick, and elderly.

          *******************************
          Philip Riggs
          Colorado State University
          Fort Collins, Colorado
        • Wong, Tim
          I continue to contend that there is no more consistently irritating noise than the gas- or nuclear/coal-powered (electric) lawn mowers and their new cousins,
          Message 4 of 9 , Nov 3, 2000
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            I continue to contend that there is no more consistently irritating noise
            than the gas- or nuclear/coal-powered (electric) lawn mowers and their new
            cousins, the gas-powered rakes and brooms. Most motorcycles and cars are at
            least moving, as irritating as their noise is when they're right near you.
            Compare that to your polar icecap-melting neighbor using a power lawn mower
            to mow a postage stamp-sized lawn and taking longer to do it than it takes
            me to use my brown rice-powered reel mower. As a society, we have somehow
            accepted that affront to everyone's ears within a block because it is
            "mainstream" people doing it. Imagine how soon the police would be called
            on a noise complaint if some teenagers played heavy metal or rap music for
            15 minutes at the decibel level of a gas-powered lawn mower.

            tim

            > -----Original Message-----
            > From: Philip D Riggs [SMTP:mrphilgood@...]
            > Sent: Thursday, November 02, 2000 8:54 AM
            > To: carfree_cities@egroups.com
            > Subject: Re: [carfree_cities] Noise
            >
            > The noises frustrating me most these days are loud car radios and overly
            > loud motorcycles. When the bass of a car system can rattle my windows
            > from 300 feet away it is excessive. And the high pitch whine of a
            > motorcycle zooming from a stop sign raises my anxiety level. I wish every
            > city in the US would adopt some sort of noise pollution. Has Europe
            > addressed these problems, or are Europeans more conscious of the bother
            > these things cause? I think one of the side benefits of the car is the
            > isolation from the problems they cause. Concern for neighbor has
            > disappeared from America. I laugh when I hear G. Bush's plan for public
            > support of social programs. Nobody cares about the people around them
            > when they are isolated from the problems of the poor, sick, and elderly.
            >
            >
          • J.H. Crawford
            ... We ve got Harleys here that are every bit as noisy as the ones in the USA. It s simply inconceivable that this sort of public insult is permitted. ... I d
            Message 5 of 9 , Nov 4, 2000
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              Philip Riggs said:

              >The noises frustrating me most these days are loud car radios and overly
              >loud motorcycles.

              We've got Harleys here that are every bit as noisy as the
              ones in the USA. It's simply inconceivable that this sort
              of public insult is permitted.

              >When the bass of a car system can rattle my windows
              >from 300 feet away it is excessive.

              I'd say it's far beyond excessive. It's an issue here, too.

              >And the high pitch whine of a
              >motorcycle zooming from a stop sign raises my anxiety level. I wish every
              >city in the US would adopt some sort of noise pollution. Has Europe
              >addressed these problems, or are Europeans more conscious of the bother
              >these things cause?

              There is some awareness here, and some steps have been taken.
              Some of the worst offenders here belong to the "motor-scooter"
              class of vehicles, some of them being incredibly loud. The police
              have stepped in here, and the situation is not as bad as it was.

              >I think one of the side benefits of the car is the
              >isolation from the problems they cause. Concern for neighbor has
              >disappeared from America. I laugh when I hear G. Bush's plan for public
              >support of social programs. Nobody cares about the people around them
              >when they are isolated from the problems of the poor, sick, and elderly.

              Yes, I've always said that social issues are at the heart of the
              carfree concept, and that private cars are a major cause of
              social isolation, for a host of reasons.


              ###

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