Our empty buses

2 thoughts on “Our empty buses”

  1. Here are more articles on these ideas:

    http://northassoc.org/2009/12/23/transit-thinking-outside-the-bus.aspx

    Last year, policy analyst Randal O’Toole ran the numbers for the CATO Institute, where he is a senior fellow, comparing mass transit vehicles to private vehicles, ranking each based on how much energy they consume and how much CO2 they emit. The average motorized city bus, he reports, burns 27% more energy per mile than a private car and emits 31% more pounds of CO2. The U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics confirms that the average city bus requires 20% more energy per passenger than the average car…

    Ridesharing applications for smart phones — users enter their location and desired destination and a cost-conscious carpooler responds — are already in wide use, Mr. Rubin says. Self-sustaining, small-scale private jitney systems have successfully operated for years in Atlantic City and Puerto Rico (all North America’s early public transit systems were privately operated until they were nationalized). And with billions freed up from public transit funds, it appears entirely feasible to simply offer subsidized Prius taxis, or even car subsidies, to the small portion of the public entirely reliant on public mobility…

    http://northassoc.org/2007/11/27/randal-otoole-the-folly-of-smart-growth.aspx

    People who are disabled, too old, too young, too poor, or otherwise unable to drive have long been the major users of public transit… [I]nstead of building high-cost, high-capacity rail lines and then attempting to redesign cities to provide ridership, planners should focus on designing transit systems systems to serve low-density urban areas. That means using low-capacity jitneys, shuttle vans, and demand-responsive transit systems. It also means demonopolizing public transit, opening the door for private providers of transportation services…

  2. See also “Private buses make a comeback in NYC” at

    http://marketurbanism.com/2010/08/16/private-buses-make-a-comeback-in-nyc/

    …the outer boroughs’ immigrant communities have had robust networks of informal private vans (known in NYC as “dollar vans”), which operate illegally but have been hard to prosecute, likely due to the fact that they are used mostly by linguistically-distinct immigrant communities. The recent cuts even propelled the bootleg bus phenomenon out of its immigrant ghetto, when a brave bus operator named Joel Azumah made headlines by operating a bootleg bus route along routes cut in Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn…

    The city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission appears to have headed that call, and under the direction of chairman David Yassky is trying to replace at least some of the old bus routes with private buses. Unlike the city’s much-abused private van service, where operators are technically not allowed to pick up riders off the street who haven’t called ahead of time, the buses would operate with many of the privileges of regular city buses, with the added flexibility of being able to alter their routes to fit customers’ needs. Cap’n Transit has speculated that this discretion could be used as a back-door way to expand the private buses’ reach to areas not officially sanctioned by the program…

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