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Blue is fine since Canada is split between Red (Calgary, Ottawa, Toronto) and Blue (Vancouver, Edmonton, Montreal) anyway when it comes to transit branding. Although that said EMTSC went with a very flashy purple / cyan combo, but it's a moot point now that they're gone.

Generic names are fine too, Toronto Subway and Montreal Metro are about as bland as they come. No complaints there.

For what it's worth, Edmonton Global has a nice logo that looks like an updated version of the Flying E.
 
Bring back the old logo cowards
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Blue is fine since Canada is split between Red (Calgary, Ottawa, Toronto) and Blue (Vancouver, Edmonton, Montreal) anyway when it comes to transit branding
It would be yet another way to differentiate it.
Also, neither Vancouver or Montreal look as grey and dead as Edmonton in the winter (or for as long, in the case of Montreal), and adding a more vibrant colour scheme would definitely be a breath of fresh air, especially in the Metro and Capital line trains.

They're not much older, on average, than the C-Train ones, and yet I can't count how many times I've heard that they look old/less modern. The colour scheme and the actual liveries play a substantial part on this perception.

I also believe that a total rebranding of ETS, coupled with a stronger approach regarding safety and cleanliness, would do wonders for the perception the general population has of the system. It could feel pretty much like when a new tenant takes over a previous business and revamps the whole thing. Might still be the same location, and even the same kind of business, but it's a soft-reboot.
 
Interesting takes, from a few people I recently spoke with, regarding the whole transit system.

1 - My neighbors moved in in October, from Toronto. They sold their car before moving, as they planned on getting one here, but we're afraid they'd have to buy it as soon as they moved, from what they'd heard/read.

1 1/2 months in and they still haven't bought one. They're both young professionals, with a 7 y.o. boy and a baby. Both of them work from home and have been relying on transit for most of their trips, with Uber/Taxi for stuff like grocery shopping.

Their opinion of ETS:

The good:

It works surprisingly well, albeit inefficient at times, especially for a neighborhood like ours (Summerside).

Generally very punctual, at least so far (no heavy snowfall yet).

The Valley Line made their lives a lot easier, as they were able to find a bunch of amenities in Bonnie Doon (doctors, dentists, grocery, etc.). I'm also made easier to get to Whyte and Downtown, which they had barely explored before, but went to every weekend since the line opened, with their children and alone.

The "bad"

Frequencies could be higher and routes could be more straightforward towards the transit centres/LRT stations.

The busses and some of the cars in the high floor lines could be cleaner (or at least look cleaner).

The perception of safety, especially in some transit centres and LRT stations is very bad. They did notice that there's not necessarily more sketchy people, but they're more noticeable and feel more "at ease" to interact with other people because of this.

Suggestions they had:

Having wi-fi and USB ports, like Toronto or Vancouver have on most busses would be a huge plus.

Not having the cloth seats in the LRT and the busses would make them feel a lot cleaner.

Tap with CC instead of having to buy the ARC card.

They'll still buy a car, but their plan is to wait until it becomes harder to live without one as much as possible, to save some money.


2 - a co-worker moved here from Vancouver, in September, in preparation as we're moving our HQ to Edmonton in May. He lived in Downtown Vancouver and chose to live in Oliver, around the 110 st area (close to the Government Centre LRT station). He didn't own a car in Vancouver, and immediately upon moving he bought one, because of his previous experiences in Edmonton (living here ove 2 decades ago, in Millwoods), and feedback from the majority of his friends who live here (all suburbanites).

He has now sold his car, less than 2 months in, as he barely used it, and could probably spend less money with an Uber to do the trips he uses his car for.

His takes:

The good:

Living Downtown/Oliver without a car is very easy. Most of what you don't do walking, you can easily get to by LRT, or busses in some cases.

The LRT is very convenient for DT-centric trips, but also made it easy to shop. He has used it to shop at Southgate (including groceries on Safeway), ECC and ICE District Loblaws (which is his favorite grocery store).

Bus schedules for lines DT are good and frequencies were surprisingly good.

The bad:

The underground LRT stations are generally gross, especially some of the entrances, that reek of urine and are littered with needles and others. They don't feel particularly unsafe, but they're certainly not pleasant.

He echoed the same point as my Torontonian neighbors, regarding the cleanliness.

Some routes are very inefficient, have too many stops and are too long (I assume he's referring to lines like the ones to WEM and Windermere, where most of his friends are).

His suggestions:

He found it VERY unusual that we don't have fare gates. His opinion is that it worsens the lack of safety perception, as it allows the problematic people on the trains, instead of limiting them to the stations.

He had the same point about CC tapping.

He doesn't really have a reason to use the Valley Line, but rode it once to check it out and found it to be great. In his opinion, that should be the standard the whole system should be held to, in terms of modernity, cleanliness, punctuality and general feel.

Now, these are anecdotal evidence, but they do paint a much different, and better, picture of our transit system and than I expected from people coming from these cities.

My own comments on their opinions:

1 - I agree with the low frequency issue, especially on suburban routes. Expanding the LRT will likely free up resources to improve that.

It could also be improved by changing the logic a little bit, and instead of linking every point to Downtown, or having lines cross it (most of the time), feed people into the LRT, with more frequent, shorter and more direct routes, whenever possible.

2 - I also agree with the cleanliness issue. Our busses feel very dirty and unpleasant, a lot of the times. The idea of having plastic seats only is a simple one that I loved. I think the Valley Line nailed it, in this point.

3 - I love the wi-fi and USB suggestion. It would make for much better trips, especially long ones. I'll extend it to: having wi-fi and/or 5G coverage on the underground stations of the LRT would also be great (and might even help with some safety issues).

4 - I cannot express how much I agree with the fare gates point. It's a LOT easier to have police/peace officers patrol only the outside of stations than keep track of sketchy people moving around the system, since you'd only need a couple of officers to be permanently posted in, or around, the most problematic ones.
Would also help make the trains safer, which can definitely improve the experience and increase ridership.
My argument for this being an investment, rather than an expense, like some here have treated it in the past, is that some of the most dangerous cities I know have some of the safest metros in the world, and having the fare gates is a major part of it. São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Bogotá...

I'll add that I really think the VLW will be a major gamechanger, probably the biggest step towards making Edmonton feel like a big, modern city, as it'll link not only our largest attraction to the system, but also our densest neighborhood, which also happens to be blooming into a great urban experience. We'll finally have connected the absolute majority of our main destinations to the LRT (Whyte being the exception, and a sore thumb, in my opinion. I blame terrible planning for this, as I find it very unlikely we'll ever see rail go on/around Whyte).
 
Good points and agree with the idea of not having cloth on the seats. Fare gates is one that seems to come up a lot and might be an idea to pair with and roll out in a phased approach with station renovations.
 
Good points and agree with the idea of not having cloth on the seats. Fare gates is one that seems to come up a lot and might be an idea to pair with and roll out in a phased approach with station renovations.
While I still don’t see fare gates as a silver bullet, and many of our stations don’t make it super possible/effective, I wonder if it’s worth it at some of the hotspots for issues.

It doesn’t fix the entrances and pedways though…

But I do think if you can get the majority of downtown stations with gates, then maybe it keeps people off trains, which are even harder to monitor vs stations.

At least at a station you can somewhat leave. Being on an LRT car while a meth head starts yelling is terrifying for most. And there’s no easy way to escape.
 
I think the station entrances can be improved significantly, especially along Jasper Avenue. I understand that some of them are narrow due to space constraints but that is something that would go a long way to improving the feeling of safety. Some of these entrances/exits are right single/small double lanes staircases up to the street which feels awfully claustrophobic and doesn't allow great visibility. It should be standard for them to be a sufficient width (not sure what that would be, 5 meters?). Hopefully this is dealt with during development of some towers (ie. the Parks).
 
Well as for renaming, we don't have or need a Skytrain, so that is easy. E-Train could work well and be distinctive without being misleading or over the top.

However, I'm ok with LRT which I realize is generic, in part because we have used that name a long time and it is well recognized locally.
 
Interesting takes, from a few people I recently spoke with, regarding the whole transit system.
Summerside without a car sounds not great, but not having to rely on transit for commuting is a relief.

Oliver friend should sign up for Communauto. They've been fantastic whenever I need them. I use their one-way vehicles like taxis.

For both, is the option for CC tapping for them or others? If themselves, considering they seem to take transit on a regular basis, why do they not like Arc Card?
 
While I still don’t see fare gates as a silver bullet, and many of our stations don’t make it super possible/effective, I wonder if it’s worth it at some of the hotspots for issues.
I agree it's not a silver bullet, but especially in the underground stations and some transit centres, like MacEwan, Southgate, Century Park and Coliseum it's fairly easy to do, and it would make a lot easier to monitor/patrol the entrances than the trains AND the stations.

Even from a dispatcher perspective, if you're deploying a police/peace officer, it's a lot easier to say "go to station X" instead of coordinating with LRT security and have a "suspect is on a train bound for station X, between Y and Z, in one or the cars".

Summerside without a car sounds not great, but not having to rely on transit for commuting is a relief.

It's not great, especially if you have to commute every day, but it's less terrible than I and them) imagined. The SE part of the neighborhood is actually surprisingly easy to bike.

Oliver friend should sign up for Communauto. They've been fantastic whenever I need them. I use their one-way vehicles like taxis.

I used when I was in Oliver, even having a car. Sometimes going to Whyte made more sense to use Communauto, because of parking and all.

For both, is the option for CC tapping for them or others? If themselves, considering they seem to take transit on a regular basis, why do they not like Arc Card?

I guess it's a little bit of both.
I'll admit that having to carry an additional card is a bother to me, for example, as I use a very small wallet, with space only for my ID, healthcare, a debit and a credit card. I can imagine that other people go through the same.

I guess for them it's also just the habit of having it, since it's convenient if you are a more casual user.

I'd settle for an app that you could add to the wallet on the phone and tap with that.
 
Expanding from an earlier post on the Capital line thread:

https://pub-edmonton.escribemeetings.com/filestream.ashx?DocumentId=104679

Notwithstanding these are pre-pandemic estimates, is this realistic?

Capital line: 207,500 (2050)
Metro line: 110,000 (2047)
Valley line: 128,900 (2047)

So by 2050 the LRT is going to see around 450,000 boardings a day? That's 4x the 2019 peak of 110,000.
 
Expanding from an earlier post on the Capital line thread:

https://pub-edmonton.escribemeetings.com/filestream.ashx?DocumentId=104679

Notwithstanding these are pre-pandemic estimates, is this realistic?

Capital line: 207,500 (2050)
Metro line: 110,000 (2047)
Valley line: 128,900 (2047)

So by 2050 the LRT is going to see around 450,000 boardings a day? That's 4x the 2019 peak of 110,000.
1 - Someone here had mentioned that apparently, weekday usage, especially during business hours, which is what these estimates generally are for, had already reached pre-pandemic levels before the Valley Line.


2 - If you consider that population should be at least 2.5x what it was in 2019, in some very conservative estimates, and that LRT coverage will have almost tripled in area (Valley Line completion, expansions on the Capital and Metro Lines should also be done), these numbers are not too far off, I guess.

The Valley Line alone will probably be enough to increase at least 80% over that 2019 number, once complete (adding Oliver and WEM to the network will probably be a gamechanger). Blatchford should be substantially more developed by then, as well.
 
1 - Someone here had mentioned that apparently, weekday usage, especially during business hours, which is what these estimates generally are for, had already reached pre-pandemic levels before the Valley Line.


2 - If you consider that population should be at least 2.5x what it was in 2019, in some very conservative estimates, and that LRT coverage will have almost tripled in area (Valley Line completion, expansions on the Capital and Metro Lines should also be done), these numbers are not too far off, I guess.

The Valley Line alone will probably be enough to increase at least 80% over that 2019 number, once complete (adding Oliver and WEM to the network will probably be a gamechanger). Blatchford should be substantially more developed by then, as well.

Oh wow, Edmonton's population (the City, not Region) broke the million barrier in 2019. So it's supposed to be at least 2.5 million by 2050 then... Metro area would almost be the size of 2019 Montreal, whew.

Considering that the LRT network is radial, it seems like each 'leg' of high floor LRT (NE, S, NW) is expected to see ~100,000 riders, while low floor (W, SE) sees ~65,000. It would be interesting to see how Calgary's splits compare.
 
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