Who has a metro?

The Age: Melbourne trains fail world ‘metro’ test

Based on this study: PTUA: Melbourne Metro by name, but not by nature, which looks at the biggest thirty cities in the developed world by population, and which of them have a metro — that is, a high capacity, high frequency (every 10 minutes all day, every day, to most stations) rail service.

In other words, a way of moving large numbers of people quickly and efficiently around, without making them wait very long or check a timetable first to catch a train.

Of those thirty cities, the only ones that don’t? Detroit, Houston, Dallas, Phoenix, Sydney and Melbourne.

But Melbourne could have it, just by running its existing trains more frequently outside peak hours.

I especially like the Tandberg cartoon that The Age did.

Read more at the links above.

Update:

Channel 7 coverage

Human Transit blog: Pitfalls of metro-envy

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11 Replies to “Who has a metro?”

  1. I agreed what you said last year on a news update that if Melbourne wants to call its trains a metro they should run it like a metro that means an improved network. If MTR is a Chinese company and China is the most populated country in the world that the cities may have more than the population of Australia. If MTR in China can cope with the overcrowding and increases then Australia which is a much more small population can cope with the overcrowding and increases.

  2. It is interesting that Miami is listed as having a metro system on the world map and that on the surface it would appear to put it in a better catagory than Melnourne and Sydney.

    This is not the reality however. If you live in Miami you defenitly need a car and only those that really can’t afford a car will do without one. Miami does have an extensive bus system but the city covers such a large area that to travel far by bus is not pratcical and often times not even safe. Imagine trying to get around a city the size of Melbourne that is hot and humid and often has heavy thunderstorms only by bus.

    While we do have Metrorail it is basically 1 line that extends from the southern suburbs through downtown and north into what I would consider a bad, unsafe area to go. Downtown Miami has little in the way of shopping, entertainment, or restaurants to offer and is basically just office buildings. It is dead and unsafe at night. Metrorail does not go to the airport or anywhere a tourist would go such as South Beach, Aventura mall, or Coconut Grove.
    Even if the trains on Metrorail did run every 10 minutes it is useless to most of the people in Miami.

  3. Jed, yeah it didn’t look at the number of lines or stations, but rather the quality of service provided, even if it is limited to a small number of lines.

    In general, cities with metros also tend to have developed the rest of their PT, eg Toronto has only three metro lines but a very extensive frequent buses and trams to back them up. Likewise Rome only has two metro lines (and a third under construction). Miami might well be an exception to this in having only one line, and not having well-developed services on other modes.

  4. Take it from me guys, Rome ain’t the example you want to follow with regards to any form of transport! If you want to know the definition of anarchy, Rome’s roads are a pretty good description! And I quite happily say that, even though I’m the son of Italian immigrants! ‘Free-for-all’ is the best way to describe the driving there, and I don’t think the PT system would be very efficient either- Mussolini’s been dead a long time!!

  5. Melbourne ought to make a metro out of one line, say from Riversdale to Alamein. Remove all level crossings (it has only a couple in that bit anyway), upgrade the track & stations disconnect it from the rest of the system and run new metro trains up and down it every 3-8 minutes.

    Sure, it won’t be too useful but then it’ll qualify as having a metro for the PTUA’s guidelines based on the above comments!

  6. Yeah, you can’t say Miami or LA have better public transport than Melbourne with a straight face. LA trains hardly go anywhere, and the buses are slow and infrequent. You need to either own a car or get taxis everywhere at $40 a pop because of all the time spent in horrendous traffic.

  7. I like the Tandberg cartoon. The germ of truth we all recognise is that performance is usually inversely proportional to promotion (Myki is a great example).

  8. it’s going to take at least another decade until metro brings us up to standards of having a real metro in melbourne

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