Boy, it’ll be good when that trolley gets finished so our traffic problems will be over.
Ha ha. Just kidding.
I took that picture today. Looking south from Stanton and Baltimore. I reckon that’s what the whole length of Stanton will look like once the trolley starts running.
The genius masterminds behind the project are cutting Stanton down from four lanes to two. To accommodate the trolley that duplicates the routes of at least four other bus routes.
If you live in Kern or Mission Hills, I predict that your house will lose from five to ten percent of its value. Because who wants to fight rush hour traffic?
Or maybe not. Maybe you’ll only lose five to ten percent of your hair, and your blood pressure will rise five to ten units, because who knows what units they measure blood pressure in? PSI?
Svarzbein’s trolley. Rim road is now a relief route for traffic diverted by the Stanton street trolley construction. The city is proposing to build a $150,000 roundabout at the intersection of Rim and Hague to slow down traffic on Rim. A public forum was hosted by Svarzbein May 3rd at the El Paso Tennis club to discuss what type of landscaping would be appropriate. I was there. I’m sixty five years old and I was the youngest person there.
I was there too and no you weren’t. There were at least half a dozen folks there who looked to be in their 30s-40s (and that’s not counting their toddlers) and quite few folks spoke up about the safety issues they deal with trying to get to Tom Lea park.
Chuco geek. I was the drunk guy that yelled at the city employee that claimed stop signs and speed limit signs were only invitations to motorists to break the law. I counted at least three people under the age of 40 there. I’m sorry. I thought they worked at the Tennis club. I also gave an exclusive video interview to a gal from channel 4 which aired that evening. Look it up. It’s on the inter web. And I’m sorry I missed you. I swear to God I thought you worked there. And I’m sorry about your kids.
It’s even better than you know.
Apparently the City couldn’t get some of the utility companies (AT&T probably) to relocate their lines away from the edge of the road. Solution? Move the streetcar not to the middle of the road, no sir. They added a two-way bike lane on the left side (looking at your picture) and put the streetcar in a shared middle turn lane and then reduced it from 2 lanes each way down to one so the streetcar line got moved more than halfway across the road.
I have been to several public meetings and I have yet to hear anyone explain how people will safely get on the streetcar when it’s in the middle of the street (Run across traffic? Wait in the middle of the street?) and I’m really not convinced that anyone will know what to do when a cyclist comes racing down the street (effectively going the wrong way) and then turns without stopping and often without looking which way they’re going. Keep in mind I like bike lanes and I support people being able to bike around town, but this one is going to be a mess. Hell the Streetcar on Stanton from Rio Grande to Baltimore is going to suck especially hard (that’s where it was put in the middle of the streets) and it really makes me question what they’re thinking. I was a big supporter when they started but seeing how badly they’re building it and how shitty their traffic control is makes me really worry about what we’re going to get in the end.
What a farce. That trolley will be exciting for a few people for about a month or two, then it will be just another (costly) thing in the way. Who is the demographic for that exactly when there are already so many other and better options?
How embarrassing. And fuck Peter Svarzbein. The trolley campaign as a visual art project wheatpasted all over downtown was cool but it wasn’t supposed to be a reality. The trolleys are long gone for good reason. That guy is nothing more than an opportunist pile who squandered a golden opportunity as a City Councilman and has just gone along with the others off the cliff.
Actually the trolleys were done away with because of one guy in the 70s. Seriously one guy didn’t want them operating any more and he did away with them because he got elected mayor and that was one of the first things he did as mayor. Clearly he did have some support for that action because he did get elected and he was pretty up front about it, but we all know how shitty our voting turnout tends to be so it’s not like the trolleys were hated by everyone at the city. I bet if you could have gotten all the people who regularly rode it to vote in favor of it that guy wouldn’t have made it into office.
That being said, at the time that they were shut down the trolleys in El Paso were doing all right business and could have continued to operate. Granted that was 40+ years ago so who knows if they could have survived disco, or various changes to our border policy since their time (and especially since 9/11) but to say that the time for trolleys has come and gone is disingenuous.
El Paso even being able to build this new trolley system was a bizarre piece of “good” luck. TxDOT had just taken away a bunch of money from San Antonio because they didn’t have an appropriate project ready to go and we just happened to have our trolley plan sitting on a shelf ready to go into construction (supposedly “shovel ready” but not really). It’s totally debatable whether the trolleys are a good or a bad idea, but it’s not like the money being spent on them would have gone to something else in El Paso. If we had said “no we don’t want to build the trolley” TxDOT would have taken the money and gone down the line funding other qualifying projects in other cities (just like they took the money away from San Antonio). Maybe that would have been the “better” thing to do, but it’s turning down $97M capital improvement work would have been hard for anyone to do (especially for a project that elicited so much nostalgia from folks who had fond memories of the trolleys)
That nostalgia is going to cost approx 1 million dollars a year for maintenance and to run it . Really think the trolley will earn that much revenue. It will go to the wayside just like the tramway. Don’t believe the cost estimate, talk with city reps that are willing to be honest. Don’t waste time asking Dist 1, that’s his pet project.
Really believe that tourists will travel to El Paso to ride the trolley. If you do, stay out of the sun. Most people in other regions have no idea where El Paso is located and some actually believe we still travel by horse and have cattle round ups. I know, I experience those questions before moving here permanently.
Give it up, El Paso will not return to being a destination city because Juarez is considered dangerous. Mexico is second on the list of dangerous countries and killings. Syria is number 1, Afghanistan and Iraq are 3 and 4. Google it and see for yourself. The only reason tourism was big is because of access to Juarez. Until Mexico gets off the list you will not convince other about having lunch or living in Juarez.
The trolley makes as much sense as the two buildings with 10 stories each and the cheapest condo is 2 million dollars. Low wages, high taxes ring any bells ? Do we really have that many millionaires? Why would anyone buy a condo for 2 mil when they can invest in a nice home and plenty of space.
Rice a roni, clang clang the San Francisco treat! Remember that commercial. What will we have ? chicos tacos, fart fart, the El Paso treat.