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I dunno, if the streetcar is on rails it can't squish you into the curb. I suppose the bigger danger there is from cars, since the lanes on the pike are shoulderless. When you ride the pike, do you take a lane or do you stick to the side?

What bothers me about the picture is the rails. Just try talking a left turn across the rails when its wet. Then there is the prospect of dodging obstacles, jaywalkers, cars and such. You could easily catch your wheel along the rail and you'd be down in a blink.

Personally I wouldn't want to try to ride in front of a street car--The tracks are a major wheel trap hazard. Your right about the gutter bunny in the "after" photo.

The video is somewhat substantial (a hair over 54Mb) but the website just isn't capable of serving it out. It took nearly an hour to download on a commercial grade broadband connection--about the same rate I would have gotten with my old dial up service.

They try to show the before and after without taking out the trees that will never be allowed to exist that close to the power lines. Too much chance of either the trees damaging the power lines or the trees serving as a method for someone to electrocute them self (intentionally or not).

Both. When going down the big hill north from Walter Reed, I take a lane, otherwise I ride over a bit (though I make a point to not ride in the gutter - I have some pride).

So tell me again why a streetcar on the road is better than a bus? I think this case shows some of the problems when streetcars don't have their own space. If streetcars use the same physical space as other traffic, they are subject to the same traffic. But in addition, they have the constraint of being limited to their tracks, so they can't move laterally to deal with obstructions or slower moving vehicles. Plus, the tracks themselves create maintenance and safety issues on the road surface.

The arguments I've heard are:
1. More economic development
2. Quieter
3. Lower operating costs
4. Electricity less polluting than diesel or gas.
5. Smoother/more comfortable ride
6. People will ride them - less stigma
7. Greater carrying capacity

I'm not saying that these are all true, or that they're worth the added cost. Just, those are the arguments.

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