the "O" story:
So, Eliot...so Milwaukie's doing pretty well, and you want us to believe that is only because of MAX.
The Orange Line is much more than Milwaukie, so let's do a true, full and honest reporting on the entire line.
Park Avenue - how many businesses have opened up at Park Avenue, as a direct result of MAX opening up? Zero. (I hear there's a shiny new Fred Meyer gas station nearby, though.)
Tacoma/Johnson Creek? Zero. If there was a more inhospitable location for a light rail stop I'm not sure what it is, since this station is hemmed in by a freeway to the west, a mainline railroad to the east, a protected wetland to the north, and a large railroad (turned bike path) berm to the south. It's a great location for a jail or prison, though.
Bybee? Zero. Freeway on the west and mainline railroad to the east. Beyond that, you have parks to the west and a golf course to the east.
17th/Holgate? Zero. In fact MAX took out good businesses on the street corner; TriMet replaced it with employee parking lots. I don't think TriMet is going to redevelop the Center Street Garage as "mixed-use development" anytime soon.
17th/Rhine? Zero. How many people take MAX to PGE? How many PGE linemen use MAX to get to the worksite?
Clinton/12th? This is a net LOSS of jobs, since TriMet took out an entire block of businesses - good, industrial jobs, that pay livable wages and benefits. All gone. Lots of empty blocks here. The MAX/Union Pacific right-of-way is reminiscent of the Berlin Wall's minefield - lots of gravel and steel. The surrounding land use is industrial.
OMSI/Water? Again...nothing here; thanks to all the street re-routes and the Streetcar alignment, this is just a massive maze of concrete, with some gravel lots and a parking lot.
South Waterfront/Moody? There's a shiny new building, that's a tax-exempt building owned by OHSU and PSU. So government jobs, with a couple restaurants (an Elephant's Deli and a Starbucks) on the ground floor leasing space. Not exactly a "win" considering it doesn't improve the tax base, and mostly just relocated jobs from other leased space elsewhere in downtown or on the hill.
So there you have it. Unbiased reporting. There's ONE stop that has had some development, and a lot of net losses or zero impacts.
IN Hot weather, MAX trains are delayed.. in extreme cold weather, Max Trains are delayed..
As far as economic development along the lines.. lets just say, Show me.. except for downtown you don't see many businesses along a Max Stop.
Gateway area comes to mind.. this paper ran an article this year about how what was envisioned never came to be.. Go to the Gateway Travel Center.. with the exception of Fred Meyer near the stop and maybe a Kohls store.. there is not much going on in the area.. and it's not a place I like to be in due to various "Clientele" who frequent the area.
I was once told by a rabid supporter of the light rail system in the Portland Transporation Office that you can take the Red Line train and shop for furniture in IKEA.. I have YET to see someone pushing a furniture box onto a Red Line Train.. but that is not the point.
I like the idea of the Red Line when I fly.. but the downside is.. Heaven help you when your plane is late coming back into PDX and the Red Line is closed for the evening.. your stuck with an expensive cab fare or Uber or Lyft..
Am I against Light Rail? No.. it has it's purpose in the Scheme of things overall.. I use it to get downtown often when I DO go to downtown.. easier than parking down there. But that maybe is once or twice a year. if it's daytime.. but if I want to be down there for the Night Life? Forget it.. be on that last train by 12:30 AM or your walking home.
But Light Rail is also being touted as a replacement for my private vehicle.. There is the rub.. I don't wish to be slave to only going somewhere in the Portland Metro area.. being locked into traveling more time in a transit bus or train and being told you can "walk" the rest of the way. I like to be able to travel in the state on my own and explore it.. Not to be tied to a certain geographic area because some planner thinks I should.
As far as the Orange Line.. Ride it to the end of the line.. and then go on.... see how far you can get on that bus on the Weekend... Have fun
Amazing what a billion dollars can do! --- A few more storefronts!!
I guess all that economic activity is why Milwaukie had to increase its property tax rate to pay for its light rail costs and is why the city has not been able to afford to replace the people quitting, being fired and retiring...last report I saw said the city has 44 fewer staff and police positions due to funding issues...
Yep, light rail sure is a boom, but just not to the citizens and taxpayers...it is only a boom for the politicians, developers and contractors making money off the light rail...
Well the Orange line is one year old. Projected ridership was 20000 per week day, or about 10000 round trips because Tri met counts all rides. And so what is the actual ridership???? From Trimets own numbers.....drum roll.....wait for it......11000, or about 5500 round trips. Those are actual numbers from Trimets own performance data.
So the O writes a piece on real estate prices and a dubious correlation between the 2??? Come on O, write a real story. The story that 1.5 billion moves half of the lower bowl of the Rose Garden per day. That kind of money could have been spent to increase 217 to 3 lanes. Money that could have NOT been spent at all.
Neil Goldschmidt is smiling somewhere counting all his money.
Last fall I was waiting for the Orange Line at Tillicum Bridge, wanting to ride it to the end of the line in Milwaukie. I was tired from riding all day and having a few beers in the SE brew pubs, felt it better to just take the Max.
Well, being Sunday, guess it doesn't run so much, so I lit off on my bike. Sure thing, as soon as I got going the train came, but too late for me to board. So I decided to race the train. It passed me a few times, as it sped by and I thought never to see it again, then somehow I did (couildn't see the tracks all the time on my part of the journey:..............
Short story long, the train arrived in Milwaukie about 30 seconds before me, but think what I could have done sober and really trying to ride. It is akin to Joseph Rose out-walking the Trolley downtown, ha ha
The 50% vs 60% is a bald faced lie. It was know years earlier.
The project was pared back because it was over budget.
A big reason is the property acquisition was far more costly tHan anticipated.
It's amazing how the chaos from wasting $1.5 billion is called a glow.
Nice "puff" piece Elliot.
We are tired of basking in the afterglow of emptying our wallets for choo-choo trains that cost waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much.
The story in blogger Njus's chaotic babble lies in these lines (not to mention the ill-willed handling of parking needs by Tri-Met):
The first year, however, has had its share of challenges: Ridership numbers are lower than projected .... Some who once had a one-seat bus ride into downtown Portland now have to transfer.
The demand has driven listed home prices 12.2 percent higher, according to Realtor.com,
This is the tell-tale destructive symptom of the society-destroying cancer of the ultra-selfish Podesta/Dixon 1%er Democratic two-tier society: The day-to-day, real-life economic struggle of real individuals on the lower tier gets harder, mainly to benefit the privileged represented by Clinton, and Clinton-superdelegate Brown.
Funny that they haven't run a similar puff piece about the Green Line.
I wonder why?
Elliiot Njus, come on, let's get some real reporting rather than just carrying the the government catch phrases and propaganda. Do you really believe that the land sales are due to a max line that is under used or simply because Portland has been pricing out so many tenants of apartments and businesses. If you believe this then you really need to go back to what ever journalist school you went too (if any) and start again.
This scenario is exactly what happens when prices get too high for folks, they move to the closest area that still has reasonable prices and that they can still commute to work. To put this on the Max train is just too much stupid propaganda trying to justify a train that was way, way too expensive and an area that could have been better served by a rapid transit bus system.
Obviously by the comments on this thread most folks are not buying the propaganda. Please don't insult your readers inteligence again by writing something so pathetic.
"City officials say home sales and property values have seen double-digit growth, in no small part to the $1.4 billion TriMet light-rail line connecting Portland to Milwaukie."
Hmmm - so Milwaukie is seeing growth in home values - just like the rest of the region and you associate that with Light Rail?
Come on Oregonian - this isn't reporting, this is an advertisement for MAX Light Rail! Lets see the true economic growth for the region over a 5 year period, compared with the rest of the Portland Metro Area!
The real news is that, AGAIN, TriMet isn't achieving the number of boardings projected, so TriMet - in cahoots with the Oregonian - LIED to the public again to get this Light Rail Line built. The Oregonian continues to under report the fact that TriMet built light rail throughout the region by lying to the electorate.
Um... home sales and property values are currently in what is known as a "bubble," caused primarily from artificial land barriers like the UGB, bureaucratic red tape and other government meddling, and an influx of people from California and the East Coast who somehow think a 1/2 million dollars for a "fixer upper" is a good deal (but fail to realize there aren't enough high-income jobs in the area to support such prices).
The Orange Line was a success, if success means spending 1.5 billion dollars (much of which came from dirt poor gambling addicts) on a slower and less flexible replacement to several perfectly functional bus routes
Toss the current schedules. Look at traffic patterns and rider sources and destinations anew. Improve cross-town service. Stop expanding light rail; if they absolutely must run it to Tigard, don't run it down 72nd -- guaranteed fail. Toss the concept of "frequent service"; it's a lie. There are corridors where "frequent service" doesn't work because buses get bunched up in rush hour. With effort and analysis of traffic patterns you can come up with a reasonably accurate, realistic schedule for major stops throughout the day. Treat operators with respect. Treat customers with respect. Have customer service open 0500-2300. The customer is not the enemy; it's the reason you exist. Look at 24 hour service. Implement an electronic fare system compatible with the Orca system up north.
I Win What the others said.
If I designed my network the way TriMet designed light rail, a single bad fiber optic circuit would take down the data center connection to campus. I'd be out of a job.
But not TriMet . . . Consistently don't meet ridership goals, deferred maintenance, way expensive infrastructure . . . And they're praised for being under budget on a project that shouldn't have been built in the first place.