The Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal

Informed but opinionated commentary and analysis on urban transportation topics from the Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal. Names have been omitted to protect the guilty.

Our Mission: Monkeywrench the Anti-Transit Forces

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Friday, August 02, 2002

Is There an Eye Doctor in the House?

From the Cabalmaster:

Sometimes we TransitCabalists wonder whether that old leftist complaint about conservatives "lacking vision" might be true.

William F. Buckley's "National Review" published the following:

"Indeed, new rail projects consistently end up with lower ridership and higher cost than promised. That's been the case in San Jose, Baltimore, Detroit, San Francisco, Atlanta -- and most recently, on the new Blue line from Long Beach to Los Angeles, which rumbles along with near-empty cars" ("The Road to Nowhere," in "The Week in the West" section, November 16, 1992).

Blue Line ridership reached 36,700 per weekday by the 1993 fiscal year (which started in June 1992), representing more boardings per route-mile than any other postwar U.S. light rail line. The current record, 70,020 boardings per weekday, was set in May 2002 (MTA monthly boarding reports).

Yet NR's response to a letter to the editor was a tacit refusal to publish a correction (it contained stock phrases such as "We‚re sorry that you didn't like the article").

According to a 1997 onboard survey, only 11 percent of Blue Line passengers were white (see: "Influence of the Rail Program on Bus Transit in Los Angeles," Richard Stanger, Journal of Public Transportation, Vol 3 No 2, 2000).

Oh, so that's it! All the other passengers were "invisible minorities!"

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