[tabi] Re: Nova 2010 Plan

  • From: "Allison and Chip Orange" <acorange@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 17 Sep 2009 20:15:45 -0400

Thanks William.

Sam, or someone from StarMetro, when told that the new plan had many
problems with accessibility, supposedly responded to the person telling him
this `"It's not about accessibility, it's about mobility!"

That, in my opinion, is an accurate assessment of what I've heard, and an
attitude worth discussing.



-----Original Message-----
From: tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf
Of blindwilly
Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2009 7:59 PM
To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [tabi] Re: Nova 2010 Plan

They are still in the planning stages, like his post says, so let's think of
that.   It seams reasonable that bus routes go to malls and important
places, so let's make an issue of it.   we have a schedule of places where
they will be taking public input, along with our meeting of the TCB.   Get
on board all you stragglers and lets make a difference.

        ----- Original Message ----- 
        From: Chip Orange <mailto:Corange@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>  
        To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
        Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2009 5:53 PM
        Subject: [tabi] Re: Nova 2010 Plan

        Hi William and all,
        thank you for the posting.
        I'd like you to know I've been speaking with another blind
individual, who is neither associated with TABI or TCB, so most of us are
unlikely to know what he knows and vice versa.
        He in turn has been speaking with Sam, and has mentioned to him that
the new routes as planned, do not go directly up to the malls (such as
Governor's Square), but only approach a near-by street corner (I believe he
said the Parkway and Park Avenue for instance).
        This would mean quite a walk for someone going to Gov Square, and
even worse, part of it would have to be across the parking lot without any
        He has also mentioned that several routes would require transferring
by walking across a difficult to cross street such as ThomasVille Road or
Capitol Circle, in order to achieve certain routings.
        In general, he believes Star Metro has made these decisions without
considering the difficulty a blind pedestrian would face in following the
        I don't know if his understanding is correct, and even if the
current plan is still this way, but I thought I'd point it out for those who
are interested as an item I would judge to be of importance.

        Chip Orange
        Database Administrator
        Florida Public Service Commission
        (850) 413-6314
         (Any opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not
necessarily reflect those of the Florida Public Service Commission.)



                From: tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of blindwilly
                Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2009 5:40 PM
                To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
                Subject: [tabi] Nova 2010 Plan



                The following is an on going discussion I have been having
with Sam Scheiv of Star Metro.   In fact here is his first message, back to



                Dear Mr. Benjamin:


                It was nice speaking to you yesterday.  Please find attached
the document describing the Nova 2010 project.  Below I have written
descriptions of each route

                as they are now.  I have not included every turn or small
street, but enough to understand the general direction.  These routes are
still in flux.  In

                fact I just made a change this morning.  So this is not
final.  We are taking suggestions from the public and incorporating them
into the plan.  That means

                we need to know what people DO like as much as what people
don't like.  I hope you find this interesting and I appreciate you calling.




                Samuel L. Scheib

                Senior Planner




                Nova 2010 Overview



                For many years transit concentrated in downtown Tallahassee
where shoppers, moviegoers, employees, and diners invariably traveled.  Over
the ensuing decades, the downtown share of the city's employment decreased
as shopping centers, restaurants, movie theaters, and even government jobs
relocated to the periphery (Tax World, Koger Center, CCOC, etc.).  


                The practice of transit is changing, and a growing number of
agencies have found serving multiple destinations has been tremendously
successful, starting with West Coast transit properties in Portland, Oregon,
and San Diego, California and then spreading to places like Colorado Springs
and Madison, Wisconsin, a state capital with a large university presence
like our own.  In Florida, Pinellas and Broward Counties have similarly
restructured their systems.


                Concurrent with the 2005 StarMetro Renaissance Plan, the
2005 Transit Development Plan, the November 2008 City Commission Target
Issue Meeting and the City Manager's 2009 Resolutions, StarMetro has taken
preliminary steps to create a decentralized route structure plan for the
City of Tallahassee.  Once implemented, the plan, known as Nova 2010, would
distribute transit services mostly along major roadways in Tallahassee;
several routes will not serve downtown at all.  By not sending every route
to C.K. Steele Plaza, passengers would experience greater frequency of
service and a system that more closely resembles contemporary vehicular
travel patterns.  


                In developing the draft plan, there were several assumptions
about conditions in Tallahassee.  First, the system would, like the present
one, serve the city of Tallahassee with the few exceptions currently in
place, such as Bradfordville on the 80x.  Second, we would work to use, to
the best extent possible, existing facilities.  We have Steele Plaza and
approximately 105 bus shelters, and have adapted a draft plan to use these
resources as a starting point on implementation day.   Expanding with
additional facilities would be added as the plan gains popularity, as needed
and as fiscally feasible.  Lastly, we assumed two lanes on Tennessee Street
between Monroe and Ocala would be converted to transit-only use, as is
currently recommended in a study by Genesis Group.  Beyond that, our goal
was to use similar existing resources-the number of buses and drivers, the
funding level-all would remain as close as possible to current levels.  The
above is based on our cursory draft plan.  This draft plan is subject to
changes based minimally on a full system analysis, review of alternatives,
considerable public involvement, a thorough origin and destination study and
Commission approval.


                We focused our analysis on employment density, as the
planning literature consistently points to employment density being better
at generating transit trips than population density; although having high
densities of both is best.  Since employment densities are highest on major
roadways, we assigned routes to these roads while trying to approximate a
grid network as seen on the attached map.


                Nova 2010 is intended to accomplish several things:


                q       Reduce Downtown Trips: The most common customer
complaint is that all the buses go downtown.  At a recent listening session,
a customer lamented the only way to get from one section of Orange Avenue to
another was to first go to Steele Plaza at the corner of Tennessee and Adams
Streets.  In order to mimic contemporary travel patters (i.e. to go to jobs
on the periphery) passengers often must make the V-shaped trip of going
downtown first and then back out again to the customers final destination.

                q       Reduce Redundancy: The current hub and spoke system
requires all buses to meet at the same time at the central hub. Since C.K.
Steele Plaza is located along a major arterial (W. Tennessee Street, near
the intersection with Monroe Street), every bus must travel along this
corridor at the same time in order for passengers to make their transfers.
This results in two or more buses arriving and leaving from the plaza in
tandem to travel along the same corridor for a significant distance, passing
the same stops. With the concept Nova 2010 plan, the importance of C.K.
Steele Plaza is downplayed as buses operate independent of each other. This
allows for one bus to cover an entire corridor, instead of five buses
covering the same corridor, as is the case of W. Tennessee Street. 

                q       Increase On-Time Performance: Another complaint
staff receives is buses run behind schedule. This is primarily due to two
reasons - buses traveling at lower speeds in neighborhoods, and routes being
dependent on each other for transfers (i.e. if one arrives late, the other
buses are held for transferring patrons). Under Nova 2010, buses will remain
on the major roads allowing for higher travel speeds as  applicable. In
addition, the routes operate independent of each other. This means if one
arrives late, it does not affect the operation of the other routes. Patrons
are would be accommodated better with Nova 2010 with higher service
frequency leading to shorter wait times (10 to 30 minutes during peak hours
verses up to an hour with the current system).

                q       Increased Ridership/Decreased Carbon Footprint:
StarMetro expects Nova 2010 to make transit significantly more attractive to
a much broader part of the community, and each single-occupancy-vehicle
driver that shifts to transit represents reduced carbon emissions, cleaner
air, reduced congestion, less road maintenance, etc.

                q       Reduce travel time for patrons using transit:
Instead of going in and out of neighborhoods, the Nova 2010 plan would have
more direct service to major employment and shopping/recreation centers.

                q       Increase frequency: Buses will arrive more often
giving our customers more options for using transit service with greater

                q       Increased Opportunities for Regional Travel: With
few exceptions (80X, Route 17, and Route 21), there are no opportunities for
regional travel in the current system. By decentralizing the system,
independent cross-town routes along major corridors create the opportunities
for regional expansion.


                While there are many distinct advantages in addition to the
aforementioned ones of the Nova 2010 concept plan, there are a few perceived
disadvantages, which have proven to be advantages across the country:


                q       Routes would no longer circulate within
neighborhoods. This will, however, allow StarMetro to serve a larger
population by providing higher frequency and better service to the most
popular destinations.

                q       Related to the above, walking distances to StarStops
are anticipated to increase. On the other hand, this will lead to fewer
stops, increased mobility, a more pleasurable riding experience and a
healthier community.


                The benefits, however, would far outweigh the few discrete
disadvantages, which are better communicated in a longer visual
presentation.  StarMetro would have a more dependable system going where our
patrons want to go doing so in a timely, efficient fashion.



                After I got this message, as per Sila requested, I asked for
a discription of the routes for the eleven bus routes, and they are as



                US 90 (1), 20 minutes: Fallschase, W US 90, S Appleyard, W
Pensacola, N Blountstown, E US 90


                US 90 (2), 20 minutes: Fallschase, W US 90, N Capital
Circle, loop through Commonwealth, S Capital Circle, E US 90


                Orange, 15 minutes:  Loop through Paul Dirac, W Roberts, S
Eisenhower, E Lake Jackson/Orange Ave, S Capital Circle, loop through
Capital Circle Office Center


                East, 15 minutes.  Village Square, Capital Circle,
Southwood/Capital Circle Office Center


                Southside, 15 minutes: Ross Road, N Shelfer, N
Crawfordville, Gaile Ave, N Monroe Street, Steele Plaza


                Frenchtown/Bond, 15 minutes: Orange, Saxon,
Wahnish/Macomb/Old Bainbridge, Volusia, Alabama to Preston Loop, and back.


                Pensalachee, 20 minutes:  Pensacola, Gaines, Lafayette,
Apalachee Parkway


                Hospitals, 30 minutes:  Woodland, Tuscan, Sunnyside, N.
Ridge, E Springsax, E Bragg, E Paul Dirac, N Jim Lee, N Magnolia, E
Miccosukee, Capital Medical,

                Bufford, NE Centerville, SE Fleischmann, W Misscosukee


                West Loop, 30 minutes (both directions): N Monroe, SW Fred
George, S Mission, S Appleyard, E Jackson Bluff, N Woodward, E St.
Augustine, through downtown

                to Monroe


                NE to Innovation:  N Pottsdamer, E Iamonia, N Lake Jackson,
E Gaines, Gadsden, Thomasville


                North Mover, 30 minutes: Commonwealth, Hartsfield, Pullen,
Allen, Henderson, Meridian, Bradford/Betton


                CommonWalmart, 30 minutes: Commonwealth, Tharpe,
MLK/Duval/Bronough, Park, Gov. Square Blvd, Park Conner Blvd, Walmart.



                It has been that discriptions brings up more questions than
answere, so here it is to work with.\



                William benjamin

                William Benjamin, Piano Tuner Extraordinaire.
                The tuner alone preserves the tone.

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