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ION - Waterloo Region's Light Rail Transit
(10-12-2017, 10:22 AM)Markster Wrote: An article in the Kitchener Post commenting on the absurd station locations in Waterloo:

https://www.kitchenerpost.ca/opinion-sto...d-to-fail/

Quote:I had a dream that the LRT was up and running. I took the 202 iXpress from The Boardwalk to the University Avenue LRT station, a transit hub occupying part of what had been UW parking lot A. Walking a few metres to the LRT, I saw students boarding the waiting GO, Greyhound, and GRT buses.

The southern part of UW's main campus and thousands of highrise units between Seagram Drive and Hickory Street were well served by this station.

The train quickly took me to the Columbia Street LRT station, which connected with the 201 iXpress and other GRT buses. This station served the northern part of UW's main campus and thousands of highrise units along Columbia Street.

A few minutes later I disembarked at the Albert-McCormick LRT station to return my library books. Not far away were the Albert and Bearinger strip malls, and even closer was the Lakeshore neighbourhood, the low-rise housing soon to be intensified by mixed-income family highrises.

Wonderful, but as I said, it was only a dream.

And there's a bit more after that you can read at the link.

It's certainly not wrong about how the locations for stations are woefully poorly placed from a connectivity perspective.

TriTAG was already harping on this point in 2012, back when there was the slim possibility of getting things changed, but political buy-in from the universities seemed pegged to the absurd station locations.

Which is weird, because what political buy-in was needed from the universities?

Although I have to say that the characterization of Seagram stop as being a park and the stadium only is unfair. It is also the Laurier stop, and Laurier isn’t even particular far from the stop — the whole campus is within the same distance of the stop as UW south campus. It’s just that none of Laurier’s campus is even closer to the stop, it’s all near the distance in question.

I was thinking it would be cool if there was an LRT shuttle — just back and forth between UW station (providing cross-platform transfer with the main route) and a station in the middle of Laurier. Just a single track, one vehicle going back and forth, both giving Laurier a convenient LRT stop and linking the two universities. I wouldn’t want to drive that route however. I can’t imagine a more boring driving job.
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(10-12-2017, 11:15 AM)ijmorlan Wrote: I was thinking it would be cool if there was an LRT shuttle — just back and forth between UW station (providing cross-platform transfer with the main route) and a station in the middle of Laurier. Just a single track, one vehicle going back and forth, both giving Laurier a convenient LRT stop and linking the two universities. I wouldn’t want to drive that route however. I can’t imagine a more boring driving job.

You could even do that with ... a bus! Wink
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Or a small, elevated peoplemover system, SIPEM Monorail (Dortmund), Ultra PRT, or ground-based driverless shuttle (2getthere/FROG, EasyMile)... I've been saying for years there should be an automatic circulator at UW and R&T.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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(10-12-2017, 11:15 AM)ijmorlan Wrote: I was thinking it would be cool if there was an LRT shuttle — just back and forth between UW station (providing cross-platform transfer with the main route) and a station in the middle of Laurier. Just a single track, one vehicle going back and forth, both giving Laurier a convenient LRT stop and linking the two universities. I wouldn’t want to drive that route however. I can’t imagine a more boring driving job.

If the LRT stop had been at University Ave, then that shuttle could have been "literally every bus already on University Ave"
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(10-12-2017, 11:45 AM)Canard Wrote: Or a small, elevated peoplemover system, SIPEM Monorail (Dortmund), Ultra PRT, or ground-based driverless shuttle (2getthere/FROG, EasyMile)... I've been saying for years there should be an automatic circulator at UW and R&T.

Those would indeed be lovely.  But a bus-based shuttle could be done with zero expenditure and could be running by the time the LRT is.
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On-track tests of LRT vehicle expected to start next week
http://kitchener.ctvnews.ca/on-track-tes...-1.3629564
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The Seagram stop is closer to Laurier than the R&T Park stop is to the offices currently at R&T Park.

In other ION news, around 11:30 this morning workers were putting up large signs on Columbia approaching the LRT tracks saying something like "This is an LRT test area - Live overhead wires, please obey all signals".
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New signs going up at the crossings in the current test zone warning motorists of the upcoming testing.
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Hopefully, they’ll also put them up inside the University, where I endlessly see people walking on the tracks, often with headphones in, or texting.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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(10-12-2017, 12:55 PM)goggolor Wrote: The Seagram stop is closer to Laurier than the R&T Park stop is to the offices currently at R&T Park.

In other ION news, around 11:30 this morning workers were putting up large signs on Columbia approaching the LRT tracks saying something like "This is an LRT test area - Live overhead wires, please obey all signals".

Saw one of these signs this afternoon on King St as well, just past Conestoga Mall.
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(10-12-2017, 01:24 PM)Canard Wrote: Hopefully, they’ll also put them up inside the University, where I endlessly see people walking on the tracks, often with headphones in, or texting.

Along the tracks, or just crossing carelessly?

I’m just curious because I can’t think of a single trip where the “best” route (ignoring rail safety and the rough terrain) involves walking along the tracks through campus. The only future exception is going between the station platform and E5, where the shorter route (and the one that should have been implemented in the plan) involves walking between the two tracks from the platform to the crossing in front of E5.
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(10-12-2017, 11:48 AM)Markster Wrote:
(10-12-2017, 11:15 AM)ijmorlan Wrote: I was thinking it would be cool if there was an LRT shuttle — just back and forth between UW station (providing cross-platform transfer with the main route) and a station in the middle of Laurier. Just a single track, one vehicle going back and forth, both giving Laurier a convenient LRT stop and linking the two universities. I wouldn’t want to drive that route however. I can’t imagine a more boring driving job.

If the LRT stop had been at University Ave, then that shuttle could have been "literally every bus already on University Ave"

Touché. Although I just said it would be cool, not that they should have done my idea.
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(10-12-2017, 12:55 PM)goggolor Wrote: The Seagram stop is closer to Laurier than the R&T Park stop is to the offices currently at R&T Park.

In other ION news, around 11:30 this morning workers were putting up large signs on Columbia approaching the LRT tracks saying something like "This is an LRT test area - Live overhead wires, please obey all signals".

I wonder what was/will be the first actual date for live wires? I do know one thing — I won’t be testing it with a pole!

I read an account of a tour of an abandoned New York subway tunnel (authorized, as far as I recall) in which it was mentioned that it was safe to assume the third rail was still live. Not in the usual sense of the assumption probably being true, but in the sense that the assumption in question is the safe thing to assume.
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(10-12-2017, 12:50 PM)trainspotter139 Wrote: On-track tests of LRT vehicle expected to start next week
http://kitchener.ctvnews.ca/on-track-tes...-1.3629564

"Two more functional Ion vehicles are expected to arrive in Waterloo Region by the end of the month, with passenger service scheduled to start next spring."
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(10-12-2017, 01:36 PM)ijmorlan Wrote: Along the tracks, or just crossing carelessly?

I’m just curious because I can’t think of a single trip where the “best” route (ignoring rail safety and the rough terrain) involves walking along the tracks through campus. The only future exception is going between the station platform and E5, where the shorter route (and the one that should have been implemented in the plan) involves walking between the two tracks from the platform to the crossing in front of E5.

The route from UW Station to the UW Plaza (going in front of E5) is missing a direct (and level) pedestrian link, and it is not surprising at all that people would walk on the tracks in that area.

In Red is the paths you are supposed to take, as designed.
In Green are the natural paths a pedestrian will want to take.
   

A contributing factor is how narrow all the pedestrian paths and crossings are.  They are insufficient for the volume of pedestrians. The E5 crossing is the only one that was built to an appropriate width.
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