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Old March 17th, 2014, 12:46 AM   #41
Menandro
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dimlys1994 View Post
From Newsroom Panama:
I believe that just before pressing the enter button to send a critique like that, the author should first get to know Panama City and its current public transportation situation. What he states in that article is way far from reality and there are no facts supported. It seems kind of biased as well.

This is a great response a panamanian forumer sent to the author of that article:

Quote:
Dear Mr. O’toole

First let me introduce myself as it was fairly easy to see your record of who you are, I’m a Venezuelan expat living in Panama, I have been living here for the past 4 years, but with commercial relations with Panama for the last 10 years. Also as a disclaimer I have no political affiliations as I cannot vote and I don’t work with anything related to the metro (my work information is in my signature), my opinions are as a former Metro user in different countries and cities where I lived through my life.

After reading your review and analyzing the data you present, I must conclude, that you have never traveled to Panama or are not familiar with Panama in any possible way. Especially after dropping a line like: “The few people who will find it convenient to take a train from where most people don’t live to where most people don’t want to go”

Let’s start from the numbers your crunch in the first part, you are talking about each train only carrying 375 passengers from the 600 crush number given by the manufacturer, that is a number pulled from a hat, or there is some kind of statics supporting that asseveration, as there is no quote for any statistics I would assume the former. So I present you with a more reasonable number of 480 passengers which is 80% of the “crush number” then you assumed the metro is set at 3.5 minute frequency which would be the norm except for rush hour which is 90 seconds so the capacity per hour is greater with the possibility of going down to a train arriving to the station every 75 seconds. Then you critique the size of the train which only has 3 wagons, but you fail to mention, that is expandable as the demand requires as the platforms of each station has 110 meters so it actually can double its size when the system needs it.

Now you propose to spend the money on buses or double decker buses, that is also what gave away that you probably never have set foot in Panamá, until 2012 the public transport system was composed of roughly 4000 blue bird buses, you must recall them if you went to a public school in the US chances you sat in one of those, here they were called Diablos Rojos (Red Devils if your Spanish is not good) now just imagine why a bus would be called Red Devil, well simply because they were hell, they drove like hell and many people suffered for years under that system (suffered not only a horrible service, many in the hundreds died, which I would call the ultimate in bad service) gladly the government saw that a modern Panamá needed a better bus system and introduced the metrobus which are composed by marcopolo units made for efficient public transportation.

The new buses have a 35 seated capacity and 50 standing capacity that makes 85 crush capacity using your capacity percentage of the metro which is 62.5% the capacity of the metrobus is around 53 passengers, we have around 2000 units as they are more capacity efficient than the old blue birds buses that we hated so much, but you again fail to take into consideration that we have a cramped city with traffic issues, each bus we dump into the system takes square meters of space on the road, the more buses you use the worse the traffic is. Right now traveling in rush hour from Allbrook Station to Los Andes Station not talking about the new extended one to San Isidro can take you in a metrobus 2 to 3 hours, best case scenario meaning is not Friday payday and raining, plus waiting time of 15 to 30 minutes for a unit at the bus terminal, the frequency of course is bad because traffic is bad, with the metro it would only take you 90 seconds of waiting time plus 25 minutes to get from pole to pole. The metro is not an investment we expect to see monetary return for the country in the short or mid-term, is a monetary investment in quality of life to the inhabitants of the city.

You also talk about using the money to improve the streets or freeways to make more efficient the bus system, sadly Panamá city is a cramped city with no planning and nowhere to go except up or down, I must bet you know how expensive and how long it took to Boston the big dig. They won’t recoup the cost of that NEVER, besides living like 11 years in hell, now I went to Boston and as outsider I can say is nice everything underground, but I bet you a dime that the people that suffered the construction it won’t be so eager to say that it was worth it. So for cost and time effectiveness we have only going UP which inside the city is horrible it is just bad urbanism, we could gain ground to the water and extend the coast line to improve the roads, but then again its millions and millions that could be used to a better system, like for example, the metro.

Then you compare say the metro is cheap compare to USA, but then you compare it to other countries in Latin America and say it is expensive, the same clarification you did why it was more expensive in the USA is also the same why it is more expensive in Panama than in other Latin America countries, here things are more expensive, we pay more to our workers, material quality is higher and more expensive, the compensations to affected people or business are more expensive, etc. That is the problem comparing the cost of a project between countries, perhaps if you use an index to convert true cost then you could say if it was higher or lower and that only works if both projects are exactly twins

The social benefits are clear for the people that live at the end of each terminal station at Allbrook you get people from Panama Oeste and from San Isidrio or Los Andes you get people from the North East of the city where most people from low to mid class lives so a big percentage of the population is affected positively by the metro. Most of these people has to wake at 4 am to catch a bus to go to their working place and get on time, if the metro gives them 2 or 3 hours more of sleep for them to be more productive how do we quantify this into the economics of the ROI of the metro? Also if they save 2 hours going back home, so they can spend more time with their families how we quantify the benefits of that? With a city with traffic problems as Panama has, the metro, is better than bus.

For you to have an idea Panama City is 15% of the whole country and it hosts 50.3% of the whole population, is like you put in Alaska half of the US population, with a city that grew unplanned and still is growing with little urban planning, that is the reality here in Panama, we have half of the population of the country in a city that where most of the jobs are centered in an even smaller part of the city where upgrading the vial system is almost impossible or at least as expensive as building a metro.

Finally to not take more of your time, and that line that left me in shock, the Metro would be used by a lot of people that lives in the peripheries of the city that probably has no way to own a car, that is making huge sacrifices every day to get to their jobs on time, that now they would have a decent standard of life, where they can get up when the sun is up and get home is a timely fashion to spend more time with family and themselves, instead of being inside of a bus for hours. (hope someone does a study of stress level in that population just to see how they lives improve…) So yes people would take the Metro where they live and yes they would go to the center of city where they want which is most of the jobs are located, yes the company that made the metro benefited as any business in the world and of course the properties next to the metro increased in value.


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Old March 17th, 2014, 12:51 AM   #42
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Here are some updates.

The subway is about to officially open on April 5th.


Dealante y CHI3.





















































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Old March 17th, 2014, 12:52 AM   #43
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Adding...

Estación Vía Argentina (Via Argentina Station external street view)

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Old March 17th, 2014, 08:04 AM   #44
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Los Andes, as far I understood, is a temporary terminus?
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Old March 17th, 2014, 07:07 PM   #45
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You got that one right!
Los Andes station is currently the terminus of this subway line, but it will become the penultimate stop when the San Isidro station opens in August.
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Old March 17th, 2014, 07:16 PM   #46
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Last set of pics of panamanian forumer CHI3:
























[IMG]http://i59.************/xb9u68.jpg[/IMG]
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Old March 17th, 2014, 09:36 PM   #47
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Very nice system for Panama, looks very modern!
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Old April 6th, 2014, 04:37 AM   #48
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Panama City metro delivered in record time and without cost overruns

"This is a world record. No one has built a project like this in such little time," Jose Luis Manzanares, CEO of Barcelonabased engineering firm Ayesa, told Efe during the final trial run of Central America's first subway system.

"Besides the outstanding compliance with the agreed timeframe and delivering it in just over three years, the construction of this metro is unprecedented because it was completed" without any cost overruns, TMB CEO Joaquim Forn, who is also Barcelona's deputy mayor, said along the route.

Forn told Efe that the construction and launch of the Panama City metro "has been an example of the perfect effectiveness and coordination among the different companies that participated," including Brazilian construction group Odebrecht.

It is part of a publictransport modernization plan for the capital that also includes ongoing construction of roads, tunnels and overpasses.


Pictures


[IMG]http://i59.************/2ic6xb7.jpg[/IMG]
















[IMG]http://i62.************/30m62di.jpg[/IMG]



























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Old April 6th, 2014, 07:30 AM   #49
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Looks really fantastic!!
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Old April 6th, 2014, 07:43 AM   #50
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Yeah, not often you can see metros with overhead electrification. Well done, Panama!
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Old April 6th, 2014, 11:15 PM   #51
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Photos: Panama City Metro Inauguration

































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Old April 7th, 2014, 01:11 AM   #52
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Old April 7th, 2014, 07:27 AM   #53
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Map on urbanrail.net:

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Old April 7th, 2014, 10:27 AM   #54
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Very nice!
Albrook station is airport station; or...?
regards from Zagreb
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Old April 7th, 2014, 02:10 PM   #55
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Albrook station connects to the main Panama City bus terminal and to the Albrook International Airport (2nd. main airport in Panama City after Tocumen Intl.). It also connects with one of the biggest malls in Latin America (Albrook Mall), just in case you want to do some shopping during your commuting.
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Old April 7th, 2014, 06:51 PM   #56
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Congrats to the people of Panama!

It's always great to see investment in transport public.
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Old April 8th, 2014, 01:18 AM   #57
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Amazing metro system and all remaining infrastructure. I like it so much. Great Ciudad de Panamá !!
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Old April 8th, 2014, 01:31 AM   #58
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Good subway system! Congrats!
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Old April 8th, 2014, 03:21 AM   #59
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Congratulations, Panama....
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Old April 9th, 2014, 09:45 AM   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dimlys1994 View Post
Map on urbanrail.net:

There is also a *Bonus* station that was added in during construction. It's "El Ingenio" station and will be between 'Fernandez de Cordoba' and 'Doce de Octubre' when formally opened later this year. "El Ingenio", "Curundu" and "San Isidro" are the three unopened stations on Line 1 that will open sometime during this summer/early Fall.

Line 2 should start construction within one year (probably around the end of 2014) with Line 3 construction possibly happening concurrently soon after (the Japanese government has already signed a deal with Panama to finance the project). The Panamanian presidential election frontrunner is also making Lines 2 and 3 a major point of his platform and will assuredly want both lines complete by the time he ends his mandate in May 2019. Line 2 is projected to be finished in 2017 and Line 3 in 2018.

You can squint and see the full map here:
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