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Re: [carfree_cities] tolls

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  • Jeremy Hubble
    I was driven on the Southern and Western portions of the toll road once. We managed to drive a long distance, and then exited one exit before the Bellaire
    Message 1 of 32 , Dec 2, 2003
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      I was driven on the Southern and Western portions of the toll road
      once. We managed to drive a long distance, and then exited one exit
      before the Bellaire toll plaza, and didn't have to pay a single toll.
      There are also feader roads along most of the length of the toll road
      allowing further easy avoidance of the tolls. I imagine they could
      make some money on those southern tolls if they just put a little
      effort in to it. Though by having the feaders, they are pretty much
      shut out of any toll revenue for short trips. (But being Houston,
      there probably aren't many of those!)

      On the other hand, the e470 in Denver seems to be done a little better.
      It is more difficult to get out of paying tolls, the tolls are
      expensive.

      > Toll roads don't always deliver the revenues they promise. In
      Houston, the
      > Harris County Toll Road Authority
      > http://www.hctra.com/system/map.html
      > has some of the highest per-mile rates in the US, which populists have
      > dubbed "Lexus Lanes." The northern and western portions of its Sam
      Houston
      > tollway make money, but the eastern and southern sections are
      losers. The
      > HCTRA's Hardy Toll Road in the north also loses money. Toll roads
      have
      > become more common out of necessity. TxDOT now pays out sixty
      percent of
      > its cash flow for road maintenance, and little money is left over for
      the
      > construction of new freeways in Texas. TxDOT envision that new road
      funding
      > will eventually completely dry up as the state's highways age.
      >
      >
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: "dubluth" <dubluth@...>
      > > I may be mistaken, but I believe the object of tolls (aside from
      > > realizing monopoly rents) is the recovery of the road or bridge
      > > building expenses. Operating costs could (and should) also be
      > > included.
      > >
      >
      >
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    • Karen Sandness
      On 03.12.3 10: Message: 10 ... Actually, that s every twenty minutes during the off-hours. During peak hours the trains run every *five minutes*--and that s
      Message 32 of 32 , Dec 3, 2003
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        On 03.12.3 10:> Message: 10
        > Date: Wed, 03 Dec 2003 07:28:12 -0800
        > From: Richard Risemberg <rickrise@...>
        > Subject: HSR
        >
        > Was recently on the bullet trains in Japan. 2000-passenger loads
        > leaving every twenty minutes from downtowns everywhere, the station a
        > short subway or taxi ride from anywhere in any town (think twenty
        > minutes max), three levels of service (pay a little more for fewer
        > stops). And they turn a profit!
        >
        Actually, that's every twenty minutes during the off-hours. During peak
        hours the trains run every *five minutes*--and that's just the bullet
        trains.

        On my trip three years ago, I was planning to take the train from Tokyo to
        visit some friends in Kamakura (home of the emblematic Great Buddha), which
        is perhaps 40 miles south. I phoned my friends to make arrangements and said
        that I would have to find out when the trains left.

        "Don't bother," my friend said. "The trains run every 12 minutes. Just give
        us a half-hour window of when you plan to leave Tokyo Station, and we'll be
        there to meet you."

        On that same trip, I road a country train that literally served as a school
        bus for junior and senior high school students who lived in villages that
        were too small to support a secondary school.

        Japan truly is transit heaven. On my last trip (spring 2002), I found a
        whole new railroad line running into Tokyo Station that had not been there
        before, and the subways are constantly under construction. They also have a
        second Shinkansen bullet train between Tokyo and Osaka on the drawing board
        (it would pass through different cities), because the existing one is
        reaching capacity.

        Despite their huge auto industry and some regrettable trends in the
        direction of car-oriented development in suburban areas, Japanese will be as
        ready as anyone in the world when the oil runs out.

        In transit,
        Karen Sandness
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