So. The Kramer shuttle. The next step from South Florida’s playbook on how to rescue a commuter rail line that’s foundering due to not going where anybody actually works. Is it gonna help?
We have now entered an exciting new phase of the Red Line Rescue Plan:
(thanks to reader @T_Starry for the posterized version).
I still have charts ready for a post about double-tracking, but that’s a longer-term effort; in the meantime I’d better address this one.
I still have a post simmering about double-tracking the Red Line, and why it won’t make much difference; but I may have to update it after this morning’s news.
1. The freight train derailment. It’s happened several times before in the recent past – the tracks are pretty crappy in that part of town and have not been replaced. So is this the fault of the Red Line? Not directly; no. The tracks were bad before the Red Line was a gleam in Mike Krusee’s eye. HOWEVER: if we had built light rail in the 2000 plan (if Krusee hadn’t forced it to the polls early); we’d have two brand-new, presumably better-engineered and more safe tracks through the whole corridor – so a derailment would have been less likely.
2. MOPAC managed lanes. I say the same thing now that I said THREE YEARS AGO: If the lanes don’t have a dedicated exit or exits, and there’s no indication TXDOT has changed their plans to add any, they will be completely useless – they will quickly degrade to the speed of the general purpose lanes as people in the managed lane struggle to merge back through 3 lanes of traffic to get off the highway.