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by Katie Pearce
Would it kill journalists to look at the economics of transit rather than to just believe the Gospel of Enrique Pen?alosa? They compare capital costs, and completely ignore buses’ permanent upfront higher operating costs. Heck, that buses have shorter service lives than rail even implies that capital costs are higher than a mere upfront comparison suggests. Bogota labor is presumably cheaper than first world labor, so they can eat these higher operating costs, and come out ahead for eschewing significantly higher capital costs that may even have to be financed in a foreign currency. This should be pretty “duh” stuff for anyone with a cursory knowledge of business or economics journalism.
Buses are always going to be a piece of the transit landscape but, no, they are not uniform “the future of urban transit” anymore than dollar vans are. A good idea in Bogota is not necessarily a good idea in New York or Berlin.
“Finally, DOTs are admitting what the data has been telling them for the past ten years: Traffic is not increasing. It's flattened out overall and decreasing per person. This will lead to more sensible investments in transportation.”
In response to "It's Happening: Washington State Revises Traffic Forecasts to Reflect Reality"