Today’s Headlines

Featured Headline: We’re going to get our first look at what Metro staff thinks about the geotechnical issues surrounding the Westside Subway and Beverly Hills at a committee meeting this Wednesday.  It’s going to be a hot topic, for sure.

  • Port Traffic Shows Rare Drop from August to September (LAT)
  • Mica Mum on Source of Transportation Funds (Streetsblog Cap. Hill)
  • Metro Cracking Down on TAP Scofflaws and More on the Turnstiles (ZevWeb)
  • Kavanagh: Why Better Tech Doesn’t Lead to Better Transportation Habits (SM Patch)
  • Giant Bicycles Spoofs GM’s “Reality Sucks” Ad (Cyclelicious)
  • Long Beach Looking for Bike Count Volunteers (LAist)
  • Who Wants a Kate Spade or Ralph Lauren Bicycle? (LAT)
  • Map Shows “California Roads for Cyclists” Circa 1896 (Big Map Blog)
More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill
  • Anonymous

     Metro did not crack down on “TAP scofflaws”, they had a fare checking session (done by humans) as they should be doing on a frequent basis.

    Whether the passenger had a TAP card does not matter so long as it is possible to ride using a variety of fare media printed on paper.

    If you read the posting, you realize that the humans (LASD employees) did the warning, citing and arresting.

    I know of no turnstile or faregate on the market which can perform such a task.  Indeed the checking was done upon exiting the station(s), something a locked LA Metro turnstile will NOT be set up to do, at least as LA Metro has presented .

  • It shouldn’t be an either/ or situation.  “Man vs. machine” is a false dichotomy.

    Supermarkets which have installed the do-it-yourself auto-checkout stands (which I like) still have human beings to help customers, answer questions, fix problems.  Traffic lights and signals can not prevent people from breaking traffic laws on their own.

    There are things that human beings excel at and there are things that machines excel at. There is no reason why humans and fare gates can’t work together in Los Angeles.

    And obviously the testing period is a special circumstance.  Metro will eliminate all of the plain-paper tickets; replace them with tickets which can go through the fare gates.
    And I predict that distance-based fares will be added to Metro Rail, even if Metro Buses are not. Sooner or later, Metrolink and Santa Monica will figure out the future lies in TAP as well.

  • Anonymous

    James, 

    Are there any unstaffed supermarkets that you know of?

    Do you have any insider information on what LA Metro is planning to do about staffing stations?  Roving staff between stations?  

    “Sorry you cannot get past the turnstile with your valid ticket, a station agent is enroute.  Your wait time is approximately 15 minutes. LA Metro cannot be responsible for missed connections” (?)

    How is one-county LA Metro planning on forcing five/six-county Metrolink to switch to TAP or end free transfers? (Remember Metrolink’s Ventura County already has an RFID fare card)

    (I am sure Cubic would like to grab Metrolink’s Ticket Vending Machine contract away from, IIRC, Scheidt & Bachmann without a bidding process)

    P.S. Distance-based fares will require the expensive installation addition of expensive “Add-fare” machines (easily close to an additional $46 million) to every station with turnstiles.  “TAP”-in and “TAP”-out will do the same thing for a fraction of this, and every rail and Orange line station was already set up for this before the turnstile follies.

  • Let me rewrite a section of the article on TAP

    As incredible as it might seem to transit riders from other big
    cities like Zurich and Munich, where fare checks are the
    time-honored way to prevent or at least slow down fare-beaters, Los
    Angeles’ subway is spending millions on expensive and useless gates.

  • 1)  No,  I have not seen unstaffed supermarkets.  Hence, it should NOT be an either/ or.  There should be people AND gates at stations.

    2)  I don’t have insider information, just common sense. And experience with Tokyo’s and San Francisco’s subways, where they have both gates and staffed stations.  and TAP-style cards which cross several central Japanese prefectures.  or link all around the Bay Area from San Francisco to San Jose, in Clipper’s case.

    3)  perhaps it is bureaucratically impossible, but it is certainly not technically impossible for TAP cards to cross county lines (see above examples).  and OCTA, at the very least, IS interested in allowing various operators to be compatible. 

    “forcing” them to switch?  sounds like the Monty Python sketch about “forcing” people to sit in comfy chairs. if money is an issue, Find The Money.

  • Smithy

    Re the Featured Headline: there will be no surprises about what the Metro staff thinks about the geotechnical issues surrounding the Westside Subway and Beverly Hills at the Wednesday committee meeting.  Their minds were already made up long ago…

    http://youtu.be/L7Xp6Z0NZYw