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Old April 25th, 2008, 06:40 PM   #141
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electrify View Post
Agreed. Manhattan's new subway line is estimated to cost $1 BILLION per kilometer and will take 10-15 years before it is operational!!! No doubt in my mind going for above grade transit (ie: monorail) would make more sense.
Except stations might not fit anywhere above grade... how familiar are you with the streetscape in question? Have you analyzed it? What else, besides projected underground costs, are you basing your claim? You don't know what an above grade system would cost. We know above grade is capable of being a rip-off too, if it wants to be.
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Old April 25th, 2008, 07:19 PM   #142
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Originally Posted by Electrify View Post
Agreed. Manhattan's new subway line is estimated to cost $1 BILLION per kilometer and will take 10-15 years before it is operational!!! No doubt in my mind going for above grade transit (ie: monorail) would make more sense.
A monorail down Second Street? Huh?

In the long run, the line will be beneficial. If NY wanted to build it cheaper, they should have built it several decades ago like it was planned to.
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Old April 26th, 2008, 03:35 AM   #143
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$250 million per km, $1 billion per km ... I seem to recall that Madrid's Metro de Sur, mostly underground, cost them about $55 million per km. I get the impression that perhaps these high estimates assume mismanagement causing massive cost overruns as the norm, not as something that should be fixed. Perhaps if these people actually tried, they could do it like Madrid did.
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Old April 26th, 2008, 11:09 AM   #144
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnQMetro View Post
$250 million per km, $1 billion per km ... I seem to recall that Madrid's Metro de Sur, mostly underground, cost them about $55 million per km. I get the impression that perhaps these high estimates assume mismanagement causing massive cost overruns as the norm, not as something that should be fixed. Perhaps if these people actually tried, they could do it like Madrid did.
Different technology, geography, built form, politics, labour laws, industry practices/standards, and different existing network and services. All have an impact.
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Old April 26th, 2008, 03:42 PM   #145
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Different technology, geography, built form, politics, labour laws, industry practices/standards, and different existing network and services. All have an impact.
You forgot the biggest impact on project cost and productivity, Unions!
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Old April 26th, 2008, 04:12 PM   #146
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You forgot the biggest impact on project cost and productivity, Unions!
Nooooooo, I didnnnnnnnnnnnn't, that falls under labour laws.
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Old April 26th, 2008, 08:12 PM   #147
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Subways are worth it. Just not in a liberal democratic country under the influence of New Public Managment.

ok?
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Old April 27th, 2008, 07:39 AM   #148
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light rail and even bus rapid transit could run in a tunnel like a subway where needed. Seattle's transit tunnel which dates back to the 90's does/did both.

no city in the US that doesn't already have third-rail transit has a realistic need for such a line currently. That isnt to say a lot of cities which do have them couldn't use some expansion.

Last edited by zaphod; April 27th, 2008 at 07:48 AM.
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Old April 27th, 2008, 11:23 AM   #149
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The problem with bus rapid transit is its low ability to absorb growth without consuming very large amounts of space. LRT is much more space efficient in growth management. LRT also doesn't have the problems encountered with emissions in a tunnel that buses must deal with.

Subways are not required to be third-rail, btw. They can use pantograph if they want.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 11:39 AM   #150
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnQMetro View Post
$250 million per km, $1 billion per km ... I seem to recall that Madrid's Metro de Sur, mostly underground, cost them about $55 million per km. I get the impression that perhaps these high estimates assume mismanagement causing massive cost overruns as the norm, not as something that should be fixed. Perhaps if these people actually tried, they could do it like Madrid did.
According to Wikipedia (which confimed what I read elsewhere):

Quote:
Line 12, also known as MetroSur, is a line of the Madrid Metro. Opened on 11 April 2003, Line 12 is a circular line that is not in fact in Madrid, but links five small towns and one small village south of Madrid
This obviously has a bearing on the cost of constructing an underground line ... I presume it was all cut & cover, and not in urban streets ...
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Old April 28th, 2008, 12:15 PM   #151
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This obviously has a bearing on the cost of constructing an underground line ... I presume it was all cut & cover, and not in urban streets ...
Urban streets can still be done cut and cover... it is politically unpopular, but not a banned practice. It all depends on how badly you want to save money.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 12:41 PM   #152
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Urban streets can still be done cut and cover... it is politically unpopular, but not a banned practice. It all depends on how badly you want to save money.
Undoubtedly.

But digging up streets causes considerable disruption, which results in extra expense: as does ensuring that neighbouring buildings foundations aren't affected by the works.

One station here- "Melbourne Central"- was dug by "cut and cover" rather than tunnelling: the whole street had to be rebuilt temporarily across what was at that time a vacant lot, to enable tram and other traffic to continue in the street above. The temporary shoring around the execavations, extending about 30m below the surface, was a major project in itself. These things cost money!

Another example: the proposal put forward here last month for another underground means going under two levels of underground track already present, and under the river as well. Since there's a bridge over the river in the street above, the tracks would presumably need to diverge to avoid undermining the foundations of the bridge: without upsetting the foundations of buildings fronting the streets.

I haven't been to Madrid, but you don't have those sort of problems when you're planning a route between what have been described as as a "village" and "small towns".
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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:03 PM   #153
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Undoubtedly.

But digging up streets causes considerable disruption, which results in extra expense: as does ensuring that neighbouring buildings foundations aren't affected by the works.

One station here- "Melbourne Central"- was dug by "cut and cover" rather than tunnelling: the whole street had to be rebuilt temporarily across what was at that time a vacant lot, to enable tram and other traffic to continue in the street above. The temporary shoring around the execavations, extending about 30m below the surface, was a major project in itself. These things cost money!
Yep. I'm actually analyzing a potential strategy around some of those issues (this is theorhetical mind you) - although you can't eliminate all of them obviously. For a four-lane street (1 chain in width), have the two central lanes in the middle closed for construction while a single-track tunnel is built below them. Including pivot space for heavy machinery, I'm estimating about 8.2m wide corridor for the construction area is required for this (the tunnel itself would only be between 5m and 6m wide, depending on structural strength required for tunnel walls), which would leave about two lanes at 3.2m each left for traffic on either side. Intersections and stations are more complicated beasts of course, but it I think it works at minimizing disruptions - avoids the need for most of the temporary decking as well.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:24 PM   #154
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Quote:
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Urban streets can still be done cut and cover... it is politically unpopular, but not a banned practice. It all depends on how badly you want to save money.
Maybe not banned but definitely not practical in many places. In any major city taking out a major street for the time required to build a subway would be a disaster. Not only from a traffic perspective but also from a public safety perspective based on access times for fire and EMS equipment. The political side would be the easy side.

Also, when you take into account the economic impact in addition to the construction costs I don't believe you find that much difference between tunneling and cut and cover in most cases.

The only place cut and cover is practical are new development areas and large brown field areas such as where the Olympic Village is being built in London.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:28 PM   #155
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don't you have trams running down the middle of the street as well?

Everything is -theoretically- possible ... anyway, all I was trying to point out is that it's much cheaper to do these things on 'green fields" sites, an issue I have argued with some enthusiasm in the Australian thread devoted to The Eddington Report on Melbourne's transport woes.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:30 PM   #156
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Hmm.. again I see the objection to subway cost being raised.

Can someone enlighten why or how cities like Singapore, Tokyo, Paris, Barcelona can build extensive underground systems? It is unlikely that city officials there are stupid enough to build subways if they didn't think it was worth it. After all, maybe they are just far sighted and willing to pay for the long term benefits of an underground system?
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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:35 PM   #157
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don't you have trams running down the middle of the street as well?
On SOME streets, yes. Not every street. Which street such projects are run through is of course of the utmost importance.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:38 PM   #158
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Maybe not banned but definitely not practical in many places. In any major city taking out a major street for the time required to build a subway would be a disaster. Not only from a traffic perspective but also from a public safety perspective based on access times for fire and EMS equipment. The political side would be the easy side.

Also, when you take into account the economic impact in addition to the construction costs I don't believe you find that much difference between tunneling and cut and cover in most cases.
As I said in the previous post, on which street such construction takes place makes a BIG difference.

The Bloor-Danforth Line in Toronto is a good example. It isn't actually built under Bloor St. and Danforth Ave., but one block north (except for the last stop or two at either end, where it is on the south side, or WAY farther north). This meant that the lion's share of disruptions were taking place on small side streets. I'm sure some people were pissed off, but it is not the economic nightmare that you describe, but would have been if they did try to build it under Bloor St./Danforth Ave.

Each street is different and every project has different potential options to evaluate. Costs are obviously factor, but costs cannot be looked at in a vaccuum, the factors are many.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:45 PM   #159
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Hmm.. again I see the objection to subway cost being raised.

Can someone enlighten why or how cities like Singapore, Tokyo, Paris, Barcelona can build extensive underground systems? It is unlikely that city officials there are stupid enough to build subways if they didn't think it was worth it. After all, maybe they are just far sighted and willing to pay for the long term benefits of an underground system?
In Tokyo's case, it is partly the political climate towards trams and the premium on available space. The attitude towards how congestion and pollution are related is also very misguided in Japan, so subways are generally considered their only option, unless it is that new transportation systems crap (Yurikamome, Toneri-Nippori Liner). Subways in Tokyo are extremely expensive though, make no mistake. There is also the culture of resisting change, so Japan isn't as easily persuaded to consider alternatives as other parts of the world, and the same time, the environment of urban Japan is more challenging to work with.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 03:10 PM   #160
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Quote:
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Hmm.. again I see the objection to subway cost being raised.

Can someone enlighten why or how cities like Singapore, Tokyo, Paris, Barcelona can build extensive underground systems? It is unlikely that city officials there are stupid enough to build subways if they didn't think it was worth it. After all, maybe they are just far sighted and willing to pay for the long term benefits of an underground system?
I'm not saying these things shouldn't be done ... I'm just suggesting that it's obvious why they cost a lot of megabucks.

Singapore & Tokyo are vastly denser than my city: and just possibly don't feel so strongly about their urban heritage as well. That doesn't mean that it can't be done; just that it costs a lot more money.

Paris's system sounds- from what I read elsewhere here- almost like toy trains: they are rather small, and we wouldn't contemplate building on that scale here today. Apart from that, the "environmental" issues hardly registered a century or so ago: no-one here would countenance NYC's elevated railways being thrown up along their main street today: or even Singapore's modern version of the same.
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