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Old October 7th, 2016, 01:00 AM   #121
daft33
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No, the Edinburgh Corporation dismantled the tram network for very good reasons, principally, because it was ****

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Originally Posted by Ashis Mitra View Post
Edinburgh's great tram network was closed in 1956 for some blunt reasons –

“The infrastructure and fleet of the systems that closed service in the 1950's were usually in very bad condition. So it was easier and cheaper for the companies to change to bus-service because the cities made the streets often completely new in these days because of the many new cars. They also thought that there is no place for trams on the streets anymore and that the old and slowly trams will disturb the car- and bus-traffic.”

If you see to many European cities, which is also very old, even older and congested than Edinburgh, was prevented the world’s fifties trend to close tram networks. They patiently improved their infrastructure & fleets step by step, and imported sometimes foreign trams also. They gradually increased their network with both reserved and unreserved track. Edinburgh could do that. By gradually improving rolling stocks looking those cities, they can maintain their network. Even my city Kolkata, where tram is under trouble, still has a good network.
Some cities kept them, like San Francisco, other got rid of them, the bad idea is to write transport policy when feeling nostalgic.

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1) The advent of buses and large scale competition meant that buses often ran the same routes as the trams and would jump in front in order to "grab" customers.
Buses are still present in Edinburgh, even much more than before. Aren’t they competing with tram now? If now tram can attract more people than bus, I think if Edinburgh Transport Authority should be patient, trams would sure survived, even defeat bus. Actually they started following other cities for withdrawing tram during fifties.
The tram in edinburgh doesn't attract more people from cars, a lot of people who live or work along the tram line already used public transport and the tram doesn't actually take them where they want to go, it takes them to the city centre/ airport (kind of)

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Originally Posted by Ashis Mitra View Post
2) While buses were able to move into Edinburgh’s expanding hinterland quicker and at less cost that the trams.
Current tram network has situated in suburb, and the infrastructure is more expensive like bus (includes masts, wires, stops, etc.). But they are very popular for commuters than bus. If now they can re-make that costly infrastructure, why not past? Previous network was much ordinary than present. Actually they were lobbying the automobile industry, and the industry started marketing automobiles, like many cities around the world.
Buses in Edinburgh are popular inside and outside Edinburgh, it is perfectly normal for a middle class person to be on a bus. buses are far more extensive than a tram network ever could be and everyone in Edinburgh lives close to at least one bus route. building a tram jeopardises this network by demanding the roadspace of about 40 bus routes from all of the city and further out. It's also easy if you commute 5 days a week, you buy a pass and get unlimited travel.

Postwar Britain was a time of shortage of money and materials, spending huge amounts of money extending a line when there was a cheaper alternative available would have been considered lunacy and wasteful.

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3) The belief that trams were outdated and old technology meanwhile,
If tram is really outdated, why the transport authority returned it in Edinburgh? It clearly shows that outdated technology idea was completely fake.
Edinburgh council reintroduced it because it held a referendum on congestion charging which went like this

choose congestion charge

choose tram project (branded "no")

There was no option for no action, the city council is widelyt hated for forcing this project through against about 97% of the city residents, against the advice from the Scottish Government, ignored all of the warning signs that things were going badly and went ridiculously overbudget (it would have been cheaper if they paved princes street with gold leaf)

nobody wanted it, they did it anyway. Local democracy in action.

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4) There was a belief that buses were cheaper to run than trams.
Although initial construction cost of tramway network is higher, but it is profitable for long term, because buses runs on diesel, which is being costly month by month over the world, and also decreasing from nature’s storage. Diesel can’t be made artificially, but electricity can make from various sources, like air, water, tide etc, so it is unlimited, and it is also pollution free.
Edinburgh has a lot of steep hills, which trams couldn't always manage to climb. Electricity is cheaper than fuel, but buses were faster than trams, they had a higher top speed and drove on empty roads, trams had 2 speed settings at the time on half speed, a box would get very hot. the technology didn't exist then for high torque motors.

They also got rid of conductors 10 years later due to labour shortage (minimum wages) staff are more expensive than fuel. trams stopped in the middle of the road, which means that you have to cross the road to board the tram. buses pull up against the pavement, which is safer.

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5) The system was in a poor state of repair.
Many cities around the Europe, has maintained tram, struggling over World War 2, by investing seriously on track & rolling stocks. Even I live in Kolkata, but my city has still a good tram network. When Edinburgh closed their tram in 1950’s, Kolkata’s tram has peak period, and still one of the large system in Asia. So “impossible repairing” is just another lie.
Key word is "investing", the Edinburgh City Corporation was notoriously stingy with money, it was also after the war when borrowing money wasn't an option for local government, lots of housing was being built and these places needed to be served by public transport, the council had a choice of spending loads of money on extending and repairing the network or buy one additional bus to maintain the frequency.... decisions.

It wasnt that repair wasn't possible, it wasn't practical.

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6) The overcrowded and heaving trams running at a high frequency, in competition with growing private motor car and bus use, created congestion.
It says that trams were overcrowded, it means were very popular among the citizens, and also ran on high frequency, means a reliable service. Actually they started following other cities for withdrawing tram during fifties.
All public transport was overcrowded then, there was rationing at the time. trams could easily block junctions as the pole came unstuck from the wires etc.

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7) Competition from the private car, private bus operators and the perception of traffic congestion led to the gradual closure of lines from the 1950s.
Despite the competition with automobile, they were very popular among citizens due to high frequency. Actually they were lobbying the automobile industry, and the industry started marketing automobiles, like many cities around the world.
That may have been true in the US, but the British car industry was run by idiots without the competence nor the money to bribe governments. Toffs ran the car industry in the 50s and they wanted the rich to drive cars and the poor to wear boots.

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Originally Posted by Ashis Mitra View Post
8) Closure was supported by the authority, but generally went against public opinion.
It is very natural that ordinary people can’t be against with tram. Tram is pollution free, gentle and a status symbol of a civilized city. Even I live in Kolkata, but my city has still a good tram network.
Your city kept the network, many others got rid of them, imagine if someone in Mumbai city council said "we're going to tear up your busiest streets and build a tram on it" do you think this would be wise?

people want to get where they want to go, a city that seeks respect through status symbols deserves none.

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9) The main reason for the move to buses was the inflexibility of the tram routes should problems occur (one accident could bring the whole system to a halt).
Accident is accident, but the world will not stop for fear of accident. It may be even in today, but a regular check-up and maintenance could much reduce it.
I don't think you quite understand, because trams are on rails, ONE mistake can put an end to the whole system. People don't put up with that anymore and would be very angry. Imagine you live 14 km away from your work (because of the hugh rents in Edinburgh) and you're stuck behind 30 tram vehicles on Princes street because a cable snapped. You would be stranded in the city all night and it would take that long to walk home.

Also, you shouldn't have such a casual attitude to accidents, if it involves people, this is a cost to the health service (in the UK) if it only damages vehicles, those are expensive and need to be repaired or replaced. If the city is responsible (that is, they own the trams/buses), you (councillor) lose votes from the residents who hate a system that keeps breaking down.

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Originally Posted by Ashis Mitra View Post
Edinburgh’s previous tram survived from 1922 to 1956 and closed for those fake reasons. Tram reopened in 2014. So are we sure that around 2048, Edinburgh will not again close its tram for some updated closure reasons?
I'd be surprised if Edinburgh council only took 30 years to realise they've wasted the money and shouldn't burn any more on the stupid idea. They were a good idea before the motorcar was invented.

I am particularly bitter about the trams, A lot of businesses suffered on Leith Walk because of the roadworks (which have born nothing), I have to subsidise it through bus fares (Edinburgh Trams made a $400m operating loss this year) going from £1.20 to £1.60, The only public benefit is a handful of people too snobby to get buses don't drive as often, everyone else already took the bus. It diverts money from more worthwhile projects like buying hybrid/electric buses which serve areas OUTSIDE the city where another 1/2 million live and It's also is a huge debt burden on the city which has to recover money in other places like personal care etc.
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Old April 12th, 2017, 03:31 AM   #122
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Old October 31st, 2017, 06:44 PM   #123
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"Contractors invited to tender for £165m Edinburgh tram extension"

http://www.railtechnologymagazine.co...tram-extension
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