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Old February 9th, 2007, 04:51 AM   #101
sequoias
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They should have built a subway line under the busy street instead of a monorail in the backyard. Las Vegas has MONEY to burn, know why? There's like multi-billion dollars hotels/casinos popping out unlike almost anywhere in the world. Why don't they have a public transport agency to build a heavy rail underground right next to the busy strip where most people will ride it. It's VERY busy street and it would be lot cheaper to ride than taxi being stuck on a congested strip.
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Old February 9th, 2007, 04:56 AM   #102
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haha I just thought what if in a few years the monoril became in the state the subway in NYC did during the 70s with it being covered in graffiti and crime all over it.
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Old February 9th, 2007, 04:10 PM   #103
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Quote:
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Wait, i thought there was an extension of the monorail to the airport?
AFAIK, there will be one.
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Old August 1st, 2007, 03:36 PM   #104
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2000 study predicted woes for Las Vegas Monorail
29 July 2007

LAS VEGAS (AP) - A draft analysis prepared in 2000 predicted the Las Vegas Monorail would carry about as many riders as it does today -- far fewer than those touted by the original planners.

The report was prepared by Wendell Cox, an Illinois-based consultant hired by monorail foes to counter the claims of its backers, four years before the monorail's first paying passenger hopped on board.

Back then, planners expected more than 54,000 riders per day, projections that Cox's report called "among the most aggressive in U.S. transit history and could emerge as the least accurate."

Cox noted that the Las Vegas Monorail was "projected to carry more passengers per route mile than the New York subway, the London Underground and the Stockholm Metro, and more than double that of the most heavily used new rail systems in the United States."

"It is not likely that such an intensity of ridership would be attracted," Cox wrote.

He predicted between 18,500 and 26,600 riders per day would use the monorail.

Last year, the monorail averaged just over 19,000 daily riders.

"I apologize for being too optimistic," Cox told the Las Vegas Review-Journal recently.

Cox forecast high fares would discourage riders; then a 2006 fare hike prompted a 30 percent drop in ridership.

Cox said sightseeing walkers would avoid riding a train behind, and not on, the Las Vegas Strip. He expected the monorail would drain its cash reserves between 2006 and 2008. A credit rating firm is now predicting that could happen as soon as next year.

"I knew I wasn't that far off," Cox said.

"Nobody ever gave this stuff a laugh test. And it was laughable from the first day," Cox said. "What I put in that report was not shocking. I just compared it to things that were similar."

Staff now at the Las Vegas Monorail Co. disavow the original expectations, without offering new ridership targets.

"Current monorail leadership was not involved in the development of the original projections," said Ingrid Reisman, a monorail company vice president, in a statement. "The report has no effect on the operations of the Las Vegas Monorail."

Information from: Las Vegas Review-Journal
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 02:49 AM   #105
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With the strip rapidly becoming built out, isn't the monorail also ment to spur future development along it's corridor?
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 03:35 AM   #106
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I've seen how the stations are placed and how the new places are being built. It doesn't seem so.
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 04:44 AM   #107
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if there was a place that a monorail would work one would think las vegas would be the place

maybe if it became more practical ie connect workers in outer areas to the strip etc. instead of what appears to be a system designed for tourists only
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 10:14 PM   #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spongeg View Post
if there was a place that a monorail would work one would think las vegas would be the place

maybe if it became more practical ie connect workers in outer areas to the strip etc. instead of what appears to be a system designed for tourists only
Basically what he said

I think the big problem the system is facing is the political climate of the region. Conservative governments just don't want to fund mass transit, so it is stuck as a tourist attraction rather than a transit system.
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Old August 3rd, 2007, 03:53 AM   #109
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Taxi rides from the airport just up the road to one of the casinos is like bank robbery in Las Vegas, though it's reasonable if you have a full party.

The (slightly) cheaper shuttle buses stop at every casino and will waste half your day if you take them.

I think the monorail going to the airport makes a lot of sense in this respect. Despite the airport being so close to all the casinos in Las Vegas, getting from one to the other is a lot tougher than it seems and more expensive than it needs to be.
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Old August 3rd, 2007, 04:30 AM   #110
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The Las Vegas monorail suffers from bad design issues. It doesn't connect to teh airport currently, so it is not picking up riders there. That is blow number one. Number 2, it is not on the strip and visible, it runs along the backside of many of the hotels. This is another big problem, because most people forget about it, and it doesn't put people where they want to be. Third, the stops are more aligned to certain hotels than others. Hotels on the west side are missed completely, and only certain hotels have stations, many specifically chose NOT to be too accessible to the monorail. In addition, the monorail has a fairly, well, screwy route, which adds travel time.

I think a lot of monorails supporters hate the Las Vegas monorail, because it was so poorly planned and designed. On the other hand, hopefully they can learn from that.
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Old August 3rd, 2007, 05:47 AM   #111
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The route of the Las Vegas Monorail overlaps with The Deuce bus system, which severely undercuts the monorail's fare structure:



The original plan for the Las Vegas Monorail was for the initial segment to be built with private money and a downtown extension to be built with a federal grant. The opening of the monorail was much delayed and then the system had to be closed for a few months while problems with the drive train were fixed. This led to the loss of the federal money, which effectively torpedoed the downtown extension. The local politicians were desperate to get a mass transit solution that would connect the resort strip with the older downtown casinos. Their solution was The Deuce.

For more information on The Deuce, see the following link:
http://www.rtcsouthernnevada.com/deuce/
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Old August 3rd, 2007, 09:26 AM   #112
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When I was there last year the Deuce was absolutely packed like sardines. Given the fact that it's 110 or so outside I'm not too sure if I'd want to ride in those conditions on top of the constant traffic. I shelled out the extra cash for a multiride ticket which several people can use all at once so that our group could travel quickly and comfortably.

An extension to the airport would be nice. Given they already have a monorail system linking the terminals together it would only make sense to extend that system beyond the airport to the Strip.
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Old September 15th, 2007, 04:55 AM   #113
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Las Vegas...monorail finds it difficult to get on track

From: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-f...lines-business
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Vegas monorail finds it difficult to get on track

High fares and long walks to stations have combined to hold down ridership. An extension to the airport is pushed.
By Kimi Yoshino, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
September 14, 2007
LAS VEGAS -- -- Can the Las Vegas Monorail double down to avoid going bust?

Three years after beginning operations, the four-mile, $650-million private rail line that stretches from behind the MGM Grand to the Sahara hotel-casino is attracting about 22,285 riders a day -- far below the 54,000 predicted when the project was launched. This summer, Fitch Ratings downgraded the monorail's bond rating, already in junk status, and said financial default appeared probable.

"Things are continuing to deteriorate," said Chad Lewis, an associate director at Fitch Ratings. "Right now, they're running about 50% of the [ridership] forecast, so clearly a significant increase in revenues is needed."

But Monorail officials say what they need to boost ridership and generate profit is a $500-million extension to McCarran International Airport.

"With more than 40,000 new hotel rooms being built, more travelers heading to Las Vegas each year and the intense gridlock on the Strip, an alternative to traditional transportation is critical," said Ingrid Reisman, vice president of the nonprofit Las Vegas Monorail Co. "The privately funded Monorail . . . is a vital part of the future transportation solution in Las Vegas."

The monorail system, which began as a joint venture between MGM Grand and Bally's, was acquired in 2000 by Las Vegas Monorail, which was formed to develop, own and operate the trains. The company's board of directors is appointed by Nevada's governor.

So far, officials have not said how they would fund the expansion -- or even how they plan to pay off the bonds that funded the current line. Reisman said the credit rating on the bonds, which are insured, had "no direct effect on day-to-day operations" of the monorail or expansion plans.

Transportation consultant Wendell Cox begs to differ. He says the solution to the financial woes of the beleaguered monorail is to "tear it down. That's the first thing they should do. It's an eyesore. It has no redeeming value whatsoever."

Cox, a former three-time appointee to the Los Angeles County Transportation Committee who was hired by monorail critics to study the project before it opened, said the train was doomed to failure because ridership projections were inflated.

Ridership gainsRidership has been growing this year. In the first three months, the monorail averaged nearly 18,600 passengers a day. In April, May and June -- the most recent period for which figures are available -- it averaged 22,285. Still, that's a small fraction of the 44 million visitors the city is projected to get this year.

When the newest ridership numbers are available in a couple of weeks, Reisman said she expected them to reflect more aggressive advertising and promotions.

But Lewis of Fitch Ratings said the company was still losing money, despite higher second-quarter ridership.

Ira Sternberg, a spokesman for the Las Vegas Hilton, said the hotel was working with the company to get the word out about the monorail by handing out fliers to guests and promoting it at the front desk.

"Obviously, while the monorail faces challenges, from our perspective it's a contributing asset to the operation," he said.

Jacob Snow, general manager of the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada, said the monorail helped ease traffic on the congested Strip, adding that "no single transportation option" could carry the city's tourists. The monorail, cabs and limousines are all vital in moving people, he said.

In December 2006, the Clark County Board of Commissioners approved a 75-year franchise agreement and land use permit to extend the monorail to the airport. But no provisions were made for funding.

Gala openingWhen it opened in July 2004, the monorail was the first fully automated, publicly used monorail in the U.S. funded by bonds sold to investors with no taxpayer assistance.

Showgirls, politicians and transportation officials greeted its debut, albeit several months after its scheduled opening.

Laurent Beaudoin, executive board chairman of the Canadian-based monorail maker Bombardier, predicted at the time: "It will become an icon to Las Vegas, like the world-renowned cable cars of San Francisco. It will serve as a model for future transit systems."

But the monorail, tucked behind the Strip and accessible only after long, winding walks through casinos, is hard to find. And there were other problems. Within months of opening, parts including a 60-pound tire and metal objects began plummeting from the rails, forcing officials to shut the monorail down for more than three months.

They announced advertising deals and partnerships and hired pretty girls with cool outfits to hand out monorail leaflets, but the train remained mired in bad publicity.

A Las Vegas Sun newspaper reporter wrote an article in February counting the steps from the Harrah's casino entrance to the Harrah's monorail stop: 551 paces. That's about the same number of steps it would take to walk to the next stop on the monorail line, but without the $5 fare.

At $5 per ride or $9 for a day pass, some passengers said it was less expensive and more convenient for a small group to catch a cab.

"This is $20," complained tourist Gerri Harden, 61, as she fed money into the ticket machine at one monorail stop last month. "It's too expensive. A cab would be cheaper. I'm doing this because my foot hurts and we don't want to walk."

Her friend Bev Holdren, 43, agreed: "This will be the one and only time we'll ride it."

The air-conditioned monorail, though, has won some fans, particularly those staying at casinos with an adjoining station, including the Hilton, Sahara, Harrah's/Imperial Palace, Flamingo, Bally's/Paris and MGM Grand.

Heidi Thomas, 32, of Ogden, Utah, and three of her friends hopped on board to escape the heat and see the sights. The monorail, though, runs behind the Strip and offers little view. Still, Thomas said she'd take it again.

Her friend Lucy Warr agreed: "It's much better than walking in 90-degree heat."
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Old September 15th, 2007, 10:01 PM   #114
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from my experience, its not really efficient and its damn expensive. i do think that an extension the airport would help significantly, easily doubling ridership, with just a PR push.
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Old September 17th, 2007, 07:05 AM   #115
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I believe the Las Vegas monorail's real problem is that it is located in a car-loving red state. If it was properly funded, it could very well become a mass transit system for the city, and become a world leader in monorail transit.
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Old September 17th, 2007, 07:12 AM   #116
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5$ per ride is too expensive. Its cheaper to use the London tube.
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Old September 17th, 2007, 07:32 AM   #117
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When I was in Vegas I didn't find the monorail convenient at all. Heck, you had to cross Las Vegas Blvd to get to the other side from the monorail, and that's no small task. It was much easier driving everywhere...and it was too limited as to where it can take you.
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Old September 17th, 2007, 06:17 PM   #118
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When I was in Las Vegas we only used it once using a multi-ride ticket for our entire group. It was quick and air-conditioned. I do agree though that if I was paying for a single ride it is quite expensive. We walked a good part of the Strip that the monorail covers and with the traffic we were making better time than the Deuce buses, which while cheaper were PACKED. I don't know if I'd want to be packed like sardines into a double decker bus sitting in traffic. I hope to god that the air conditioners don't break down on those things! I guess it's a trade-off between fares, speed and comfort.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 01:13 PM   #119
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LV Monorail ridership shows rise for quarter
13 October 2007
The Las Vegas Review-Journal

The Las Vegas Monorail's daily average ridership increased about 2,000 in the third quarter this year over the previous quarter, according to statistics released Friday.

In July, the rapid transit line had its largest daily ridership average - 25,497 - since November 2005, which had an average of 25,788, according to a monorail spokeswoman.

But daily ridership dropped in both August and September, to 23,871 and 23,435 respectively.

With a current average fare of about $3.53 collected per passenger, the monorail would need a daily average of about 34,844 riders to generate the $123,000 in revenue required to balance the monorail's budget, according to an estimate made in 2006 by Fitch Ratings, a New York City-based credit ratings firm.

In the past three months, the monorail has brought in a little more than $83,000 a day in farebox revenue and seen an average of about 24,000 riders daily.

Since opening to the public on July 15, 2004, the $650 million, four-mile line on the east side of the Strip has failed to turn a profit.

September was the seventh straight month the monorail topped a daily average of 20,000 riders.

Ingrid Reisman, vice president of corporate communications for the company, said officials hope to increase ridership through marketing and advertising the transit system to conventioneers and tourists.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 05:35 PM   #120
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Las Vegas has one of the best 24 hour bus networks in the US, if not the world. The monorail should have been underground with direct connections to the hotels/casinos, or they should have built a standard Subway/Elevated Railroad. $5 is way to much, it should be $1.50-2, and casinos should give out free tokens with every $20 you spend at their casino. The BRT system should be used in more places, and adding more freeway bus routes would help the local residents. The Monorail should go to the Airport, and Downtown, too.
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