Since busses have to stop to pick up passengers, and they also have to stop before crossing a railroad track, why not combine these two things to improve efficiency. As many of the bus stops as possible will be located just before railroad tracks, thus eliminating extra stops.
If we also added
a regulation that the train must stop before passing a bus stop, then this would give public transportation users a convenient way to get from bus to train (or vice-versa) without having to ride the bus all the way downtown to the train depot.-- mwburden,
Dec 24 2000
The second part of this idea (require trains to stop at railroad crossings) just wouldn't work. There's a reason that railroad crossings always give the right of way to the train - the stopping distance for a train at running speed is too great to make it possible for trains to stop frequently or on short notice. (Here, the rules of the road are dictated by physics, not public policy).
Now, given that making trains stop at railroad crossings doesn't work, what would be the point of putting bus stops there? Many railroad crossings aren't located near places bus passengers would be going to or coming from (except for the train, which isn't stopping)?
What you'd need, of course, to make this idea work is a mechanism for train<->bus transfers that does not require the train to actually stop. I suggest something involving catapults and parachutes.-- mab,
Dec 24 2000
I wouldn't say that the train doesn't go many places that bus passengers would want to go. The train here goes right by the GM plant, along with many other light and heavy industries.
The part about the stopping distance of the train is just another engineering problem, which is probably made a lot easier by the fact that the train doesn't usually travel full speed within the city.-- mwburden,
Dec 25 2000
I have seen, though, and been annoyed by railway stations that were right next to grade crossings, where the crossing gates would be activated when the train was approaching the station from the station's side; the gates would remain down until the train stopped at the station, picked up passengers, and then finally proceeded across the tracks.
It seemed to me there oughta be a better way to do that.-- supercat,
Dec 30 2000
If you said that you would build the railway-cum-bus station such that the railway tracks are side-by-side of the platform (bus on the left, train on the right), I would give it a +1. But what would happen if the bus breaks down right at the tracks...-- mailer_daemon,
May 27 2002
Started off reasonably well but then you said about trains stopping every 5 metres. That would be stupid!-- ferret,
May 28 2002