I come from the land of TriMeth. Oh sorry, I meant Trimit. Oh damn, I mean Trimess. Oh, wait, those are the actually applicable and fitting names... OH RIGHT - TriMet! The "Transit Mecca Of The World" according to their top dogs who make over $200k bucks per year after taxes, not including all the bonuses & 5 star luxury vacations they get for sitting on their fat a***s doing nothing at all.
The land of Anti-Bus, and Light Rail Only. MAX is the only option ever to them, just so they can keep forcing massive, wide-spread gentrification across the metro area. Horribly unreliable, no one wants MAX anymore, and we get it forced on us against our wills and votes every single time they propose another stupid MAX Light Rail line. And every time, BILLIONS OF DOLLARS OF OUR TAX MONEY PAYS FOR THEM. The latest is the Purple Line MAX. The ridership & residents unanimously rejected the line's proposal, and demanded Bus Rapid Transit instead, along with focus on improving pre-existing bus service across the region it would serve.
They do not maintain their buses, and the newer the buses, the chintzier and more horrid quality they are. The oldest buses, which are 2200-2800 series buses are the most reliable and quality built by far. In the summer or winter, these older buses are the most heavily utilized because they know as well as riders that their newer & newest buses, their 3000-3700 series Gilligs WILL consistently breakdown or have mounting issues. The old buses? Weather ain't got nothing on them.
Reliability in terms of on-time performance for buses is also gruesome. You can end up waiting up to 45 minutes to an hour for a single bus - whether the driver didn't care to start the route on time, or a bus broke down, got re-routed/detoured, or taken offline for whatever reason, and typically without any forewarning or notice to riders. Typical arrival times are consistently 5 minutes early or 10-15 minutes late. If a bus is on time, that is one of the most bizarre and trippy experiences as a rider to have as it is so incredibly seldom. This famous lack of reliability has business managers and owners taking on nearby residents who rely on TriMet to get them there because they're the right fit and hard workers on the job, but typically end up letting them go with regret, since they cannot rely on the person to arrive on time with any consistency due to TriMet. TriMet is literally why almost every job in the entire Portland Metro area of Oregon has the Driver's License requirement, bundled with "Must have a reliable form of transport".
As for the MAX light rails, they are an archaic, intentionally misused mode of transport here in the land of TriMess, and run into the predictable issues like switch issues, lift issues, electrical issues with the telearm and/or catenary, doors failing, overcrowding, crossing malfunctions, and weather problems. In the summer, the heat only allows up to 30mph max speed of travel. The winter, the rains, wind, snow & ice tends to cause plenty of consistent issues as well. Light rail overall in general makes no sense, and simply is VERY outdated and inefficient. It is also lethally expensive. The future is bus.
If the US' "Transit Organizations" (they're really Giant Multi-Governmental Corporations POSING as "Transit Orgs") paid any attention to ridership demands and feedback, as well as took Hungary, the birthplace of Light Rail & Trams, and the place where they were "perfected", they'd actively avoid Light Rail and get rid of their existing light rail systems. Hungary has gotten rid of all but a single light rail in Budapest because they themselves noted "The Future is bus, and light rail is outdated and no longer a viable form of transportation." They are actively replacing all light rails with new bus services.
In the US, Light Rail is completely misused, with pure intention as well. Light Rail was made for, and perfected for being used STRICTLY within HEAVILY URBANIZED cores of cities in a SMALL LOOP pattern to be used as a compliment to BUSES. NOT AS A HIGH-SPEED INTERCITY RAIL SYSTEM.
But, the US said, "Hey you know that Light Rail mode of transport? And how we want Intercity Commuter Rail systems? Well, let's completely abuse light rails, and use them in place of high-speed heavy commuter rails as our version of Commuter Rail systems!"
Proprietary corridors. That's all Commuter rails can do. A single, semi-isolated line. And, Light rail trains can only be a maximum length of 2 cars. That's it. They can only be at closest to each other, 3 miles apart. They tend to hold about 480 in two cars at max crushload capacity. Not a intelligent concept.
Bus Rapid Transit can go almost anywhere in just about about any way you want it too. It is nowhere remotely close to being so restricted and proprietary as LRT. And BRT buses likely would be articulated buses. Most Articulated buses here in the us can hold up to about 100-120 people at max crushload. They can be at closest 500 feet apart from each other.
LRT transit costs on average $1B USD to build a new line, not counting train purchases. The trains tend to cost between $4M-$12M USD. Running costs are exorbitant as all hell.
BRT costs on average about $20M-$60M USD to implement each new line, if one is refitting the road systems to have Bus Only lanes, counting adding moderate to high quality bus stops with cover & a bench. Running costs are also FAR cheaper. In terms of maintenance costs between LRT & BRT - there is no contest between BRT & LRT - BRT is BY FAR the cheapest of the two on that front, once again.
Also, BRT tends to be FAR more reliable than LRT. So, which mode of transit would YOU choose to have implemented?
Most of us TriMet reliant riders have gotten so fed up with them, and their refusal to care let alone listen to anything we request, say, demand, what have you, I personally believe we're on the brink of storming the HQ in an tidal wave fashion, and refusing to leave until the top dogs all step down in our demand, and we replace them with people we know we can trust to focus on us riders first, and capital interests dead last, if at all.
So, as you probably can gather, the transit system here in the Portland Metro of Oregon is abhorrent. Sorry for all the excessive detail and rant, but, as a fanatic of REAL transit, it's hard not to just let loose consistently when I've been given the opportunity. For those who have read this entire thing, I apologize haha, but I hope you learn from it, and/or found yourself interested or entertained at some point.
And this is, after all, why my signature ends with "Save us Europe, please!" haha
Also as an aside - My avatar is one of MANY TriMet memes made by ridership and former drivers & employees. This one in particular is made by a former longtime driver turned watchdog/critic of them.
_________________-Danny, TheCriminalViolin YouTube Channel: http://youtube.com/c/thecriminalviolinGAMES/Twitter (BEWARE THE SPAM AND OCCASIONAL RANTS) http://twitter.com/rumproast/In the land of TriMess, you either choose to be stuck in traffic for over an hour, or, rely on TriMet, only to encounter constantly late buses, broken down buses, drivers ignoring waiting riders, or, light rail trains ran as commuter trains that consistently encounter switch, light and lift issues. According to them and the rest of the government run transit agencies, it's the world's "Transit Mecca". Europe, save us, please.