Friday, April 8, 2011

The Letter To The FTA

Above is the actual April 1 letter from Hampton Roads Transit (HRT) to the Federal Administration (FTA) seeking answers to questions raised by the FTA. Most of you have heard the story by now: a stop work order has been placed on the Virginia Beach Transit Extension Study pending the FTA's reply.

I post the actual letter in order that you can see through the disinformation spread by the opponents. There are two main points:

1. Can the Virginia Beach extension be phased?

2. If actual Norfolk ridership numbers are desired by the FTA, how long of a halt?

That's it. Nothing more. This is not a serious blow to the project.

Should there be a lengthy halt, it would give Virginia Beach time to finish Strategic Growth Area (SGA) plans along the Norfolk Southern Corridor. Rosemont is in progress, Lynnhaven will be later in 2011, and Hilltop in early 2012.


Michael said...

For the price of the VB Tide Extension, we could have a decent heavy rail system (think grade level and elevated sections of the DC Metro).

I'm sorry, but I don't buy that $800 million price for so short a line, when the ROW is already there.

When spent wisely, $800 million buys a couple of fully built-out light rail lines!

Wally Erb said...

"Privatization" isn't a "realistic, constructive, and comprehensive plan", but rather a one word ideological position. The private sector in the U.S. has only entered the mass transit market where there has been a robust public component to supplement. - Avenging Archangel

In an effort to cut costs, (Suffolk) city leaders plan to eliminate Hampton Roads Transit bus service by the end of the year and hire a private firm to provide public transportation. - The Virginian-Pilot © April 11, 2011

A wait and see to ascertain whether AA opinion is valid.

Wally Erb said...

Perhaps, an option rather than continuing the Tide, an alternative may be configuring the NS ROW to support BRT with highway funds, and privatize the service.

Unfortunately, Tata's bill would require the return of the ROW purchase funding. "Oh what tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

Michael said...

You do realize how much lower BRT capacity is to rail

Don't hide your true intentions behind such things - I know the anti-transit crowd when I see it

You never, EVER put your specific mode of transportation into law. See the Seattle Green Line for example

Also, I-Ride is a non-profit agency. They are not there to make money.

Rail, not BRT:
What went wrong with the Monorail:

Avenging Archangel said...



1. I've rode Suffolk 7-8 times.

2. I've discussed it with HRT staff numerous times.

If you want to try to argue Suffolk, I'll be happy to talk you into the ground.

The move towards I-Ride isn't driven by costs or ideology, but rather HRT's efficiencies report, which would eliminate half of Suffolk's service in January. That's why Suffolk is out the door December 31.

Michael said...

What would happen to the 47 Lakeview under this proposal?

Avenging Archangel said...

Wally has since deleted his comments, but to the point.

Michael is correct in pointing out that I-Ride is a non-profit. However, it has much smaller cash reserves than HRT, so it has a much smaller margin for error.

I'd have to see the specifics of a Suffolk service proposal before predicting its success. However, HRT not having to turn a profit meant it could sink money into Suffolk that a private operator wouldn't.