Portland’s light rail, touted as one of the success stories of smart growth, is probably more cost effective than Charlotte’s. So their news comes as worse news to us here in North Carolina (where state tax dollars go to CLT’s boondoggle):
To what is this phenomenal growth attributed? The reporter notes, “Ridership on the light-rail system is rising as gas prices remain high, getting more cars off the road.” Gas prices have been high for quite some time — and the best we get is a 6 percent ridership increase, over five years? Point Two: Imagine, if all 240 of those average people drove alone, this hundreds of millions of dollars taxpayer-subsidized rail line only took 240 cars off the road in five years. And that’s the best case scenario.
The news gets better. “Afternoon rush hour ridership increased 11 percent during the same period, from an average of 4,450 in 2002 to 4,950 this year.” Don’t jump for your calculator, I’ll do the math: Over five years, during afternoon rush hour, a peak travel period by most definitions, an average of 510 more people…
Ah, the smart growth ideas just get dumber every day (much like the oxy moronic quality of the term "progressive"). -Max Borders