What do you think of this project?


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Kaizen

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The Edmonton Project winners now have a name & website up (for awhile now) & are rolling along nicely.
They might deserve their own thread...


I'm liking this idea more and more, small steps..
 

archited

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And the Gondola, too, is a completely asinine concept -- Gondola from where to where? This idea was first proposed in 2011 and fell flat from public dissension -- and now it is back?!? Someone(s) has/have put their head(s) in a place that would need complete body contortions to pull off. What a superior waste of money.
 

Kaizen

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Gondola from Whyte to Jasper Ave I believe is the concept to start. I'm interested to see what their plan/projections look like. I like this ball park concept thus far. Wonder if the Kevin Lowe investor group will submit an offer as well?
 

KyleBlanchett

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I have attached the link to the Gondola project. I know this may be only my opinion but I think for the future of Edmonton transportation we need more things like this.
The average transit time by car from Whyte Ave to Downtown is around 20 mins. The Gondola which wont use the roads can do the same trip just under 10 mins.
The operation of gondola systems uses the least amount of energy and has the lowest emissions of any form of mass transit.
I would love to hear what you guys think!


 

archited

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@KyleBlanchett don't be fooled by the time frames mentioned on the Prairie Sky website. The actual in-gondola time frame might well be less than ten minutes -- I can believe that. But remember that a Gondola station -- especially in an urban area -- needs to be elevated well above grade at each embarkation point, meaning access elevators. And each stop means time loading and unloading; so, realistically, the actual "commute time" would be more like 20 minutes to one half hour. When a similar proposal was forwarded by the City (Planning) in 2011, there was a huge hue and cry from apartment dwellers on the north side (104th street proposed route) pointing out that they did not want tourists nor anyone else passing by their bedroom windows (peep show) -- and that is where there is a huge divergence between Edmonton's proposal and the Roosevelt Island Tram in New York City. The landing points -- and there are only two of them in New York -- are either amid office structures (mid-town Manhattan) or park settings (Roosevelt Island) so no residential peep shows. The Roosevelt Island Tram is fairly new, has completely broken down twice, and has undergone major re-investment to build in redundancy and many other "conveniences" by State Mandate. I don't see Edmonton's effort becoming a commuter choice because of the required means to get to a Gondola station embarkation point. If, by chance, it did become extremely popular in the short run, the lines waiting to catch a ride would negate any speed advantage over other forms of commuting and there would need to be enhanced waiting facilities. It it were part of a more meaningful mass transit application then it might work, but the nature of Gondola conveyance impedes any form of creating that kind of system matrix. From a tourism perspective -- and that is where the real possibilities lie -- I think that for Edmonton it would become a seasonal ride and would therefore not be sustainable financially on a year-round basis. Instead of being a solution to a perceived problem, the Gondola is simply a concept looking for rationales to make it happen. It will eventually fade once again from mind.
 

Avenuer

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And the Gondola, too, is a completely asinine concept -- Gondola from where to where? This idea was first proposed in 2011 and fell flat from public dissension -- and now it is back?!? Someone(s) has/have put their head(s) in a place that would need complete body contortions to pull off. What a superior waste of money.

The gondola is proposed to be entirely privately funded, so I say go for it. There are many examples of successful gondola transit lines/systems worldwide, so not like they are proposing an unproven concept. I, for one, would definitely use it as it's currently quite inconvenient to get from Downtown to Whyte Ave and vice versa via transit, cycling, driving, etc.
 

archited

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What about this soon-to-be completed project, @Nosirrah -- ERRS from the Strat to Grandin -- no intermediate stops, exhilarating views from atop the High Level Bridge of the skyline and the Legislature Grounds. Transfer from the Grandin stop to LRT and go anywhere you like downtown. The ability exists to increase "traffic" on the line to suit demand. I know that this currently is a seasonal operation, but it could easily be upgraded to year-round. It also is privately funded (primarily). More interestingly the line could be extended as I have detailed in previous posts to create an interesting alternative form of people conveyance and a major tourist attraction, supporting both downtown and Old Strathcona.

On the flip side, if the Gondola fails, is the pick-up still privately funded? Is the infrastructure removed and at what cost and to whom goes the bill? Does the City then assume the operation of a failing system? And there are far better ways to get to West Rossdale with alternative systems. To your point there are Gondola systems in other world cities -- NYC and Rio spring immediately to mind. But all cities that have a system are single-use concepts in places with much higher populations and more densely peopled.
 

Avenuer

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What about this soon-to-be completed project, @Nosirrah -- ERRS from the Strat to Grandin -- no intermediate stops, exhilarating views from atop the High Level Bridge of the skyline and the Legislature Grounds. Transfer from the Grandin stop to LRT and go anywhere you like downtown. The ability exists to increase "traffic" on the line to suit demand. I know that this currently is a seasonal operation, but it could easily be upgraded to year-round. It also is privately funded (primarily). More interestingly the line could be extended as I have detailed in previous posts to create an interesting alternative form of people conveyance and a major tourist attraction, supporting both downtown and Old Strathcona.

On the flip side, if the Gondola fails, is the pick-up still privately funded? Is the infrastructure removed and at what cost and to whom goes the bill? Does the City then assume the operation of a failing system? And there are far better ways to get to West Rossdale with alternative systems. To your point there are Gondola systems in other world cities -- NYC and Rio spring immediately to mind. But all cities that have a system are single-use concepts in places with much higher populations and more densely peopled.

I was actually married on the streetcar a couple of weeks ago and love it. I agree that it is a fantastic asset and love the preservation work of ERRS, but if we wanted it to become a fully-fledged part of the transit system, I fear the historical cars would require replacement in favour of faster LRVs. Right now, the ride from the Jasper Stop to the Strathcona Stop is 10-15 minutes, give or take, which is a bit long given that the Jasper Stop isn't even located in the heart of Downtown.

I wouldn't have a problem transferring from the LRT at Grandin station but that still adds time to the whole trip from Downtown to Whyte Ave, which is where the gondola proposal excels (fastest and most direct option to and from both cores). As far as other examples of gondola systems, I like to point out Medellin and La Paz in South America, both cities that aren't hugely popular for tourism, but have very well-used gondola systems (which were preferred over other conventional transit methods due to the mountainous geography of the cities). Yes, both cities are much larger than Edmonton, but both also have multiple gondola lines, whereas only one is proposed here.
 

archited

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@Nosirrah congratulations on your nuptials -- what an exciting venue for you and your bride. I hear the speed argument, but not everything has to be rush-rush. Every trip I take to San Francisco I prefer the cable cars to BART (they also have street cars which I also prefer to BART). I have ridden LRT from Clareview to U of A on several occasions -- it's nice; it's OK -- but I prefer the ambiance of the olden street cars -- especially traversing the High Level Bridge. I view ERRS as a potential mid-town transit experience that helps to put some soul back into the City. Yes, Gondolas are ideal for mountainous venues (nothing much else works).
 

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