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Isn't light rail supposed to eliminate the need for more road improvements, since everyone will flock to it once it is built? Maybe I just misunderstood.
Can someone give us the data on how much it cost per rider mile on both lines? Please
$24 per passenger and 80% of that is subsidized? This thing will be a boondoggle forever.
Great more money out of my pocket for this boondogle.
Oh no, no one wants to ride the boondoggle chocho? Just make it free, we won't notice even more waste of tax dollars. If we have to pay people to ride it, then maybe shut it down, okay?
Road the Northstar to a Twins game last week and never was asked for my ticket. Maybe if they collected a fare each time they would have more money. Also, train was late to leave becuase it waited for people who were late. On time service is critical and all major tranist operations in other cities will not wait for straglers.
I have to pay $6 to ride to downtown and back and I only live 7 miles away.
This line is a waste. Millions of dollars for a line, and nobody rides it. I have to stand whenever I take the bus.
I bike most days and arrive the same time as the empty train does.
Before all the teaparty fanatics and paid posters employed by the Koch brothers and ExxonMobil jump all over this, understand one VERY important fact: before the first train ever rolled down this line,far-right militants at the Capitol set the project up to fail by demanding ridiculously-high fares, claiming they "needed to do this to make the line pay for more of it's cost, because it was a 'boondoggle.'" Anyone famaliar with commuter rail operations in the US knew that this was exactly the wrong formula. A quick look at Chicago's METRA line, by far the best-run commuter rail operation in the country, shows lower fares, and SIGNIFICANTLY lower on the weekends. Their lines run packed on weekends while Northstar is close to empty, yet their farebox recovery rate is far better. Lowering the fares and some scheduling improvements are exactly what is needed to make the line, already tied into two other rail lines and multiple bus lines, work well.
Minneapolis does not have the volume of public transportation around the metro that a New York, Washington Dc, or Chicago has to attract a critical mass and provide people with reach throughout the metro. A train that leads to downtown with no infrastructure besides one light rail line is not going to attract people. And sadly, unlike the cities mentioned earlier, Minneapolis/St. Paul does not have the density to make public transportation successful nor does it have a culture that accepts trains over the freedom of cars.
If this was such a great investment, the private sector would have funded it.
Critics of rail are going to jump all over this, but a small dip in ridership does not change our long-term need for transportation options. Let's not forget that our highways and roads are also heavily subsidized by tax dollars. Thanks to rail, over 700,000 riders got off of I-94 and took the train instead. This is good for the state.
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