14
Nov

2009

De-Bugging

Post by Steven Dale

When one first encounters the idea of Cable-Propelled Transit (CPT), one is alarmed. We’re suspicious of it and in some cases even hostile.  It doesn’t look like transit and it certainly doesn’t behave like transit.

We therefore conclude that it must not be transit.

That’s true, but only because we’re used to transit systems that are not centered upon our needs as riders. As riders, we want cheap, reliable service that is safe, environmentally friendly, quiet, pleasant and provides LT1M wait times.

The transit we’re accustomed to provides some of those things, but certainly not most of them. I suspect that’s why we reject the notion of CPT as transit.  Only once we make that realization can we fully contemplate cable as a legitimate mode of transit.

It’s a process my colleague Adam Cooper (a transportation planner with the University of British Columbia) calls ‘de-bugging.’ It’s a process I went through, he went through and most everyone who encounters this topic goes through.

Our current transit systems are centered on the needs of the system: Schedules, drivers, tokens, service interruptions, strikes, transfers, etc. serve nothing but the system itself.

CPT serves the needs of the riders, not the needs of the system itself and because we’ve only known transit to the be latter, not the former, we tend to reject out-of-hand the idea of cable as transit.

That’s changing, more and more.  People are de-bugging and that’s a wonderful thing.



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Want more? Purchase Cable Car Confidential: The Essential Guide to Cable Cars, Urban Gondolas & Cable Propelled Transit and start learning about the world's fastest growing transportation technologies.

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