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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Thursday, August 15, 2002


From the Cabalmaster:

MORE WENDELL COX CRITIQUES Just what you’ve been waiting for!

The Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal‚s Recommended Reading List includes the following title: “Responding to Wendell Cox: A Report by G. B. Arrington, Parsons Brinkerhoff Quade & Douglas, Inc” (see:

This thorough, 16-page critique includes a section that “takes statements selected verbatim from Cox's many editorials and publications, compares them to readily available sources and provides appropriate citations. In every instance, Cox's statements are either inaccurate, distortions or claims not supported by the facts. Cox's technique seems to be to start with a snippet of the truth and stretch it like taffy until it turns into something else that supports his position.

[“ . . . stretch it like taffy . . .” See? We’ve been telling you that Wendell is a purveyor of fudge and other confections!]

This source contains refutation of various “Cox Myths:”

--"An analysis of actual US data on all new light rail systems indicates that no system carries more than 1/3 of the volume of a single freeway lane."

--"There is no connection whatsoever between new urban rail and traffic relief."

--" . . .on average fewer than 25 percent of light rail riders are former automobile drivers."

--"On average the cost to build and operate motorways, including private auto costs, are 1/7 th that of light rail per passenger kilometer."

--"Little unsubsidized, market based light rail development has occurred."

--"As little as 10 percent of the cost of building and operating light rail systems are recovered in fares."

--"In some cases (construction) costs have increased by as much as 325% compared to original projections"

--"Even Portland, Oregon, with its mythical transit orientation, is nothing more than a sprawling metropolis barely half as dense as Los Angeles."

--"Portland is not unique. It sprawls like any other U.S. urban area."

--"Portland is not winning the battle against traffic congestion. Since 1982, Portland's FHWA Roadway Congestion Index has risen 33 percent, nearly equal to Atlanta's 36 percent."

If you‚d like citations to Wendell‚s actual quotations, together with facts that demonstrate the opposite (together with verifiable references!), we again recommend that you check out Mr. Arrington's paper.

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