SLUT is the most appropriate name for this whoring out of our city's leadership. Squandering dollars that could have been used for monorail or light-rail are shunted to make Vulcan's properties worth more.
Au contraire -- read the post -- the SLUT is free!!
You see, City officials could never have raised money from property owners for anything else but SLUT. And those grants -- that money could never have gone to anything else but SLUT.
SLUT -- It's a totally free capital improvement!!
Now that's what we call creative accounting!!
The overwhelming opinion seems to be that the damn thing is so slow and inefficient that people are better off walking or catching another bus. What a shock.
And no, I don't buy the line that it'll get better as passenger loads decrease. At best, no one's using a $2 million a year transit line, and at best, you've still got crowds and it still goes slow. Funny how no one, during the SLUT's construction, discussed how slow and inefficient streetcars are, and that there's a reason the damn things were phased out decades ago.
Fun fact: I never once rode the Waterfront Streetcar when it was in service. Do they ever plan to bring that thing back online? Should they even bother?
streetcars ain't slow if they're done properly.
i lived in freiburg for a while, and it's an ideal manner of efficient and user friendly tram system.
but yeah, that $50 million was spent for a 2 mile line that doesn't even connect anything significant in the city reeks of outlandish bullshit. niiiiiice.
The red light picture is brilliant.
I took the last SLUT south. Crossing the last two streets, Stewart & 6th took f-o-r-e-v-e-r. Should have de-boarded at Virginia and walked.
I can't wait to see the ridership levels in Jan 2008 when they start charging money.
P.S. It looked like the SLUT was 2-3 inches higher than the platform at the south terminus... how's a wheelchair supposed to board?
So who will be the first person to get their tag scratched into the windows?
I propose a tagging flash mob. Who else is in? I'll bring the sharpies you bring the blades.
I took the bus a lot last year, my first year at a community college. I couldn't drive because I was discouraged from having failed my drive test repeatedly. I hated the bus. I especially hated the one-armed man who sneezed every half second and the obese woman who flirted outrageously with the bus driver.
Like everyone else, I want to want to ride the bus. I just don't want merca...
@8 i don't want scabies, but we don't live in a perfect world
It's Disneyland for "working" adults, of course it's gonna stink like shit, and I still might ride the useless thing. Trains, Planes and Automobiles Unite!
Are you saying you have scabies? That sounds like a personal problem...
I talked to one of the folks from the city while riding the streetcar about the speed. He said that the streetcar was running at 12mph for the first day. It's governed for 30mph, but will likely not exceed 25mph.
So we'll have to wait a few days to see exactly what the travel speed is like - but he said that end-to-end will be around 15 minutes. Traffic is, of course, unpredictable, and makes most of this irrelevant.
Doesn't it have one of those traffic-light-changing thingies? How stupid is that? What did they spend the money on?
If you have scabies, please don't come to Moe tomorrow. Unless you have Rat Scabies.
Dude. Portland. Portland has a streetcar. It goes throughout Downtown, it's free, and it doesn't seem to get bogged down in traffic at all (nor does the MAX, but that's because it has ROW.)
Why is it so damn hard for Seattle to do this?
@fnarf: Ah yes, I also asked about this. The streetcar does preempt traffic lights (however not all - look for black sensors aimed over the tracks), it's disappointing that they moved so slowly today.
He also said that not all of the streetcars have the tracking software set up properly yet, which may explain why the times were inaccurate.
new car smell=phthalates=cancer causing. Smelling that stuff is like eating your makeup.
I rode for two stops and got off because it was faster just to walk.
But the design would have some physical limitations climbing Seattleís hills: The cars can only traverse an eight-to-nine percent grade.
I see. So the potential for extendability - the one remaining upside I saw to the SLUT - isn't really there after all. Why the fuck did we shell out tax dollars for this piece of shit, exactly? And is there any mass transit project that we can't screw up?
COMING SOON: Advertising wraps for the streetcars!
On KUOW earlier this week, Mayor McCheese did not know whether or not the windows would be wrapped for maximum view obstruction.
The idea of killing the 70 because the streetcar extends to the U District is ridiculous. The 70 runs all the way down to King St Station.
The Portland street car is an 8 mile loop that connects several neighborhoods and goes through downtown.
It connects to light rail and an aerial tram that goes another mile across a freeway and to a relatively inaccessible hilltop area. http://trimet.org/schedules/r193text.htm
The aerial tram was $50 million, like SLUT.
But being out of traffic and providing a trip that is faster than alternatives, it gets some 4000 trips a day ("A total of 125,158 people rode the Portland Aerial Tram in February," at $2 per ride; http://www.portlandtram.org/news_item/Tram_Ridership.htm), compared to 1000 trips a day for the slow SLUT which can be stuck in traffic.
In Seattle, why not look at an aerial tram up to Capitol Hill or West Seattle? And yes, we may want to extend the streetcar through downtown. But we didn't need a $50 million gift to Paul Allen to "prove" that streetcars are viable in general.
What we need is better planning.
I'm really seeing this as a total waste of money. I have absolutely zero trips that can be replaced with this, and I don't know anyone who does. Basically, all it's going to do for me is provide an obstruction when I'm on Denny.
This is really minor, but the place you mentioned in the original post doesn't exist. There's no "Westlake Center station" -- however, there is Pacific Place Station (which is at Westlake Hub).
Perhaps the naming of the stations deserves its own post. I'm guessing Pacific Place bought the naming rights to that station? I've talked to some people who are confused as they think that the SLUS stops right outside of Pacific Place mall.
the waterfront streetcar won't be back until they build a new trolley barn for it - planned for a mixed-use development on the empty lot east of crackcidental park.
fall 09 at the earliest, i'd wager.
The Portland Streetcar is not free except when it is in Fareless Square. The City of Portland is looking at eliminating this Fareless Square.
The Portland Streetcar also operates with traffic and traffic lights and also has to wait for Portland MAX light-rail trains. It's Weekday ridership for the 8 mile loop is nearly 10,000 riders during Summer 2007, not 4,000 unless your thinking Sunday but it is still closer to 5,000 daily riders.
The issue with the Red Seattle Streetcar was nothing serious, they simply just didn't need the third Streetcar. The power across Fairview Avenue is not activated yet and requires a tow across Fairview because the batteries onboard the Streetcar are not strong enough to pull it up the hill. I watched this practice happen several times during testing. The Streetcars are able to go down the hill with no issues on batteries.
You also can not compare the Portland Aerial Tram to the Portland Streetcar or Seattle Streetcar. The Tram is operated on a cable guide way to the Oregon Health and Science University/Hospital from South Waterfront completely out of traffic and uninterrupted and travels at 22mph and for it's short existence, it already has topped well over 1 million passengers and it's been in operations since January 27th, 2007
We can bitch, moan, and complain that this is a toy for Paul Allen but we all need to open our eyes and realize thsi $50 million "toy" will head to the University of Washington and Fremont and sooner than you all may realize. This is a trial route, nothing more should be looked into this.
The Waterfront Streetcar should be back in 2009 once the construction starts on Greg Smith's building which will house the Streetcars. The Notice to Construct signs have been up for a while now.
If everyone would just walk the 1.3 miles then maybe they wouldn't be insulting us with their FAT.
People need to calm the hell down about how slow it is (as well as other criticisms).
At least, for now.
It was the very first day of operation. Let the operators figure shit out before we all run to the bus stop screaming and crying.
@25 my criticism isn't that its slow or gives you cancer, its that the city's leadership wasted dollars on this little toy, when those same dollars could have been allocated to a city-wide mass transit system, instead of wasting it on an at-grade extra expensive bus.
of course the returning tram was full: there is no reason for anyone to get out down there!
You can learn more about the new trolley barn inside the 200 Occidental building - which will serve the waterfront streetcar line - here:
The real question is can we look forward to more of these Public/Private Investment Management Partnerships?
I almost hit the damn SLUT last night coming down 7th. She ran a red light.
Great! Another vehicle that takes you a mile and a half to practically nowhere.
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