Lisbon tram climbing a 13.8% grade!
Here are ten questions to test the knowledge of political candidates about LRT & public transit in May’s provincial election. Passing grade is 70%.
1) What is light rail transit?
2) What is metro?
3) What is capacity?
4) What grade maximum is now industry standard for light rail?
5) What is the maximum grade that LRT/tram climbs (by adhesion) in revenue service today?
6) After the introduction of ‘busways’ in Ottawa, ridership changed by how much?
7) Approximately what percentage of operating costs of a transit system can be attributed to wages?
8) Approximately how much ridership is lost per transfer?
9) Are automated transit systems cheaper to operate than non automated transit systems?
10) What is the maximum capacity of the largest light rail vehicle today, calculated at all seats filled and standing passengers at four persons per square metre?
1) LRT is a transit mode, generally electrically powered, able to operate in mixed traffic, that can economically carry between 2,000 and 20,000 persons per hour per direction.
2) Metro is a grade separated transit mode, electrically powered, built for average hourly ridership loads in excess of 15,000 pphpd. LRT can be operated as a metro, though a metro can’t operate as light rail!
3) Capacity is a function of headway.
5) 13.8% (Lisbon, Portugal)
6) A decline of ridership of 15.7% from 1986 to 1997 (OC Transpo)
9) No, studies have found that LRT is cheaper to operate, when comparing equal systems.
10) 350 passengers; the ‘Jumbo’ modular light rail cars used in Strasbourg, France. (By comparison, four Mk.1 SkyTrain cars have a capacity of 300 persons!)