Sir Xsarus wrote:
You're confusing city planning with natural disasters.
No, I'm not. I'm saying that city planning can amplify or minimize the effect that a natural disaster has on people's mobility. And planning that heavily relies on mass transit amplifies the impact of any natural disaster which affects that mass transit system.
But I guess "cities that don't do this" don't ever have any kind of inclement weather.
Of course they do. But if the mass transit system in my town is down, it has very little impact on anyone. It certainly would not ever make anyone have to start their commute 2 hours earlier. Roads tend to get cleared faster than rails do. Doubly so underground rail systems after a storm.
Why are you using a blatantly and completely unusual situation in your argument?
Because the post I was responding to was detailing the effect that this "completely unusual situation" had on the mass transit system, and the changes this forced her to make in order to be able to get to work. WTF?
At least go and pull up a slightly normal example of mass transit.
It's crappy under normal conditions too. But even more crappy when a storm comes along.
It's just that it's completely alien to people living on the west coast to even think about that level of dependence (or even use) of mass transit. We use them in the rare occasions that it's convenient. And honestly many of us do feel that some planning groups deliberately manipulate things to make it "more convenient" than driving. You ride the bus if you don't own a car. You take the trolley only if the place you're going doesn't have sufficient parking (which leads to the whole "they didn't make enough parking deliberately to make us take the **** trolley" bit).
That's it. I would *never* commute to work by train or bus. I can get to just about any location in San Diego county in 30 minutes or less by car (and it's not a small county). By bus/trolley, it might take a couple hours to get anywhere, even places that I could drive to in under 10 minutes. I just can't comprehend that people would give up the freedom of self transportation to be packed like cattle into trains and taken somewhere near where they want to go from somewhere semi-near where they started and don't even seem to realize that this is far from the best way to get around.
And I *really* can't comprehend getting into my car 2 hours earlier to drive it to a train station, and then taking the train somewhere. Um... Why not just drive my car where I need to go? And yes, I get that this is New York. But had the city spent half as much money as they've spent over the last 50 years building subways building wider roads, bridges, and better parking, you'd be able to get where you need to go. And if they'd adopted that sort of model, the businesses wouldn't have to be so packed in together in the first place. It's because of the limited locations of mass transit that things get more and more tight. Go with a more spread out model, and you have more space for everything and you don't need the mass transit anymore (or at least not as much).
I know we've had this debate before, and I fully admit this is my personal preference talking. But to me, it's just so much better to spread things out than to crowd them together. It really does seem like a focus on mass transit feeds on itself over time. Because you have it, you don't build as good a road system. More people use it. Business become dependent on where the exit points are and concentrate there. Housing has to be packed more to make it proximate to the transit as well. Over time, this affects the design of your city.
I prefer it like we do on the West coast. More room, more freedom. Better.