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Author Topic: Office of the Department of Internal Affairs feat. SoIA morgieb  (Read 1095 times)
morgieb
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« on: August 10, 2012, 12:11:21 am »
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Welcome to the office of Internal Affairs in Atlasia. I am your Secretary, morgieb.

If you have any questions or concerns, please post them here.

Thank you, and let's hope that my reign as the SoIA be a happy and successful one.
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morgieb
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« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2012, 05:03:12 am »
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ATTENTION ATLASIANS:

I am taking requests from the regions for funding that needs appropriated from Section 5 of this law: http://uselectionatlas.org/AFEWIKI/index.php/Transportation_Infrastructure_Investment_Act.
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АverroŽs Nix
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« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2012, 09:28:08 am »
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The Northeast requests $8 billion for rapid bus transit systems to be established or expanded in the following counties:

Penobscot, ME
Kennebec, ME
Keene, NH
Broome, NY
Chautauqua, NY
Oswego, NY
Jefferson, NY
Ontario, NY
Tompkins, NY
Steuben, NY
Wayne, NY
Chemung, NY
Centre, PA
Beaver, PA
Butler, PA
Cambria, PA
Blair, PA
Lycoming, PA
Adams, PA
Rutland, VT
Washington, VT
Windsor, VT

Edit: I incorrectly referred to Washington County, VT by the name of its largest city, Montpelier.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2012, 10:57:14 am by AverroŽs Nix »Logged

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« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2012, 10:28:47 am »
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Can I ask how you came up with this list Governor?  I'm interested in the thought behind this..
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АverroŽs Nix
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« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2012, 10:44:58 am »
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Can I ask how you came up with this list Governor?  I'm interested in the thought behind this..

Three criteria:

1. Each county must be large enough to support a bus system. I looked at some existing systems, and its seems that the minimum size required is about 60,000 residents. (Smaller counties with high enough population densities could pursue cooperative bus systems, but this wasn't something that I considered.)

2. Each county should have population density of at least roughly 100 people per square mile.

3. Each county should be remote enough and have a low enough population density that its residents are unlikely to have access to other kinds of public transportation. In the Northeast, this eliminates the Bos-Wash corridor, most counties along the I-90 corridor, and Pittsburgh.

It's a fairly simplistic system. If you think that I should consider any other factors, let me know.
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HagridOfTheDeep
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« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2012, 01:04:22 pm »
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The problem with low-density communities and transit systems is that determining where to place stops and where to establish optimal transportation hubs becomes a huge challenge. How do you create routes that will even cover half your population?

One of the benefits of proactive transportation planning is that transportation hubs can become a magnet for commercial growth. In a low density community, you have to account for the fact that the population isn't concentrated in a specific area. That means you have to leave room for parking at major terminals, which erases some of the potential for smart growth. Plus, the further away transit is from your home, the less likely you are to use it at all.

I'd actually argue that the money would be better spent in places that do have other forms of existing transportation. When transit systems work together, the benefits multiply. Businesses grow, cities become more walkable, and you have real hubs of growth.

I think you'd be better off eliminating the least dense communities from your list. Keep the 8 billion, but you'd be better to spend more money on the best suited communities. You don't want to pour money into a community that can't possibly establish smart transit routes... or else you'll have an expensive system with continued upkeep costs that very few people will use.

Sorry to nose my way in here, but I've spent a lot of time studying transit systems for university. I don't want to see you spending money in places that won't benefit from it.
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« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2012, 01:27:36 pm »
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Reading the text of the legislation, it says $8 billion shall be distributed among the regions. So unfortunately, we have to split the money. Tongue
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« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2012, 01:37:45 pm »
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Reading the text of the legislation, it says $8 billion shall be distributed among the regions. So unfortunately, we have to split the money. Tongue

Not necessarily. Money will go wherever it is best effective as determined by the Secretary. There is no minimum funding for a region.
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« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2012, 01:41:49 pm »
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I appreciate that you're willing to share your expertise on this subject, Hagrid. Transportation planning is an area of interest for me, too. (Like you, I was a geography major, although I've taken only one planning course.) I'll try to address each of your concerns individually.

The problem with low-density communities and transit systems is that determining where to place stops and where to establish optimal transportation hubs becomes a huge challenge. How do you create routes that will even cover half your population?

Population density is not uniform across most rural counties, and often the residents who are most reliant on public transportation are clustered in small cities, villages, hamlets. While truly rural (rather than small town) poverty is a reality, these bus systems will be geared toward helping those who live in the population hubs of these rural counties. (Which is where most of the rural poor live, anyway.)

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One of the benefits of proactive transportation planning is that transportation hubs can become a magnet for commercial growth. In a low density community, you have to account for the fact that the population isn't concentrated in a specific area.

Rural counties are not uniformly low density, and population distribution was something that I considered as I compiled my list of counties. These bus routes will be designed to connect hamlets, villages, and small cities in these counties - places that host clusters of both people and commercial activity (sometimes in the form of a traditional Main Street, at other times in the form of the more modern shopping plaza). Creating thriving mixed-use downtown areas even in the smaller communities is one of my goals for the region.

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That means you have to leave room for parking at major terminals, which erases some of the potential for smart growth.

These bus systems will be designed with reducing auto-dependency in mind, and are geared toward serving low-income and institutionalized residents who are less likely to own an automobile and more likely to live within a walkable village or small city. (In most of the Northeast Region, the more affluent residents of rural counties tend to live outside of incorporated municipalities, eschewing the most densely-populated areas.)

Quote
I'd actually argue that the money would be better spent in places that do have other forms of existing transportation. When transit systems work together, the benefits multiply. Businesses grow, cities become more walkable, and you have real hubs of growth.

I've chosen to focus on rural development because these areas are too often ignored in discussions of public transportation and smart growth despite the reality that compact small towns are often better suited to sustainable development than large, disjointed cities. This kind of development can create (or revive) real hubs of growth in these communities.

Few public transportation systems ever reach the point at which they can meet their operating costs independently, even in large cities. But municipalities continue to invest in them because the shared economic and social benefits make it a worthwhile public investment, and several of the counties on my list already host viable public bus systems (e.g. Centre County, PA, Broome County, NY, Washington County, VT). I want to make  a strong case for SoIA morgieb, so I'll take a closer look at a few of the more marginal cases, but I think that public transportation has a fighting chance in most of these communities.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2012, 01:45:15 pm by AverroŽs Nix »Logged

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HagridOfTheDeep
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« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2012, 02:06:16 pm »
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I really can't disagree with anything you've said. It's nice to find someone with similar interests. Smiley

I'd emphasize, though, that if you're only looking to establish transit routes around the population centres for those low-density counties (which is the optimal way to do it), your ridership market will end up being lower than the 60,000 people you talked about. I haven't gone county-by-county though, so you're probably better informed on the specifics than I am. I'm not sure how many counties on your list are right at the 60,000 mark.

Anyhow, best of luck. TOD has the potential to solve a lot of regional problems. If you ever want to talk about it more, let me know. I love this stuff.
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morgieb
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« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2012, 01:56:23 am »
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The Northeast requests $8 billion for rapid bus transit systems to be established or expanded in the following counties:

Penobscot, ME
Kennebec, ME
Keene, NH
Broome, NY
Chautauqua, NY
Oswego, NY
Jefferson, NY
Ontario, NY
Tompkins, NY
Steuben, NY
Wayne, NY
Chemung, NY
Centre, PA
Beaver, PA
Butler, PA
Cambria, PA
Blair, PA
Lycoming, PA
Adams, PA
Rutland, VT
Washington, VT
Windsor, VT

Edit: I incorrectly referred to Washington County, VT by the name of its largest city, Montpelier.
Provisionally granted.
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« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2012, 11:22:34 am »
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So you're giving all $8 billion to the Northeast?
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« Reply #12 on: September 27, 2012, 03:04:13 pm »
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The Northeast requests $8 billion for rapid bus transit systems to be established or expanded in the following counties:

Penobscot, ME
Kennebec, ME
Keene, NH
Broome, NY
Chautauqua, NY
Oswego, NY
Jefferson, NY
Ontario, NY
Tompkins, NY
Steuben, NY
Wayne, NY
Chemung, NY
Centre, PA
Beaver, PA
Butler, PA
Cambria, PA
Blair, PA
Lycoming, PA
Adams, PA
Rutland, VT
Washington, VT
Windsor, VT

Edit: I incorrectly referred to Washington County, VT by the name of its largest city, Montpelier.
Provisionally granted.

These projects are shovel-ready. When will the Northeast receive official approval for the disbursement of these funds?
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benconstine
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« Reply #13 on: September 27, 2012, 04:13:01 pm »
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So you're giving all $8 billion to the Northeast?
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« Reply #14 on: September 27, 2012, 05:32:47 pm »
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So you're giving all $8 billion to the Northeast?

Our need is great. And we're the only region to have even requested funding.

Again, these are shovel-ready, chainsaw-ready, jackhammer-ready, miter saw-ready projects, and every minute we're forced to wait, sixty seconds pass in Africa.
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« Reply #15 on: September 27, 2012, 07:34:59 pm »
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So you're giving all $8 billion to the Northeast?

Our need is great. And we're the only region to have even requested funding.

Again, these are shovel-ready, chainsaw-ready, jackhammer-ready, miter saw-ready projects, and every minute we're forced to wait, sixty seconds pass in Africa.
Well, it was less than 24 hours. I can guarantee you the Mideast will be acting on it as soon as I swear in tomorrow afternoon.
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« Reply #16 on: September 28, 2012, 12:10:21 am »
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So you're giving all $8 billion to the Northeast?

Our need is great. And we're the only region to have even requested funding.

Again, these are shovel-ready, chainsaw-ready, jackhammer-ready, miter saw-ready projects, and every minute we're forced to wait, sixty seconds pass in Africa.
Well, it was less than 24 hours. I can guarantee you the Mideast will be acting on it as soon as I swear in tomorrow afternoon.

I had forgotten that the Mideast was in a transition. My apologies, Tmth. Still, the regions have had the better part of a week to apply.
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« Reply #17 on: September 28, 2012, 08:49:39 pm »
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As the President has signed the national university bill, the Northeast requests that its regional university be located in Presque Isle, ME.
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« Reply #18 on: September 28, 2012, 10:41:25 pm »
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Mr. Secretary, would it be feasible to spend the 1.47 billion allocated for the creation of a national university in our region to instead be diverted to expand and improve our community colleges, as those colleges are the ones most essential to economic recovery in our region?
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« Reply #19 on: September 29, 2012, 10:42:53 pm »
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Thank you, Mr. SoIA, for your patience. Smiley

The Mideast Region formally requests part of the $8 billion for rapid bus transit systems to be established or expanded in the following counties within our region:

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Waukesha, Wisconsin
Will, Illinois
DuPage, Illinois
Champaign, Illinois
Kent, Michigan
Saginaw, Michigan
Kalamazoo, Michigan
Washtenaw, Michigan
Vigo, Indiana (Yes, there is bias here, but we sure need it! Tongue)
Tippecanoe, Indiana
Marion, Indiana
Jefferson, Kentucky
Boone, Kentucky
Summit, Ohio
Hamilton, Ohio
Franklin, Ohio
Kanawha, West Virginia
Henrico, Virginia
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Fairfax, Virginia
Loudon, Virginia
Baltimore, Maryland
Anne Anrundel, Maryland
Greene, Missouri
Jefferson, Missouri
Clay, Missouri
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« Reply #20 on: October 01, 2012, 12:03:03 pm »
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The Northeast requests $8 billion for rapid bus transit systems to be established or expanded in the following counties:

Penobscot, ME
Kennebec, ME
Keene, NH
Broome, NY
Chautauqua, NY
Oswego, NY
Jefferson, NY
Ontario, NY
Tompkins, NY
Steuben, NY
Wayne, NY
Chemung, NY
Centre, PA
Beaver, PA
Butler, PA
Cambria, PA
Blair, PA
Lycoming, PA
Adams, PA
Rutland, VT
Washington, VT
Windsor, VT

Edit: I incorrectly referred to Washington County, VT by the name of its largest city, Montpelier.
Provisionally granted.

These projects are shovel-ready. When will the Northeast receive official approval for the disbursement of these funds?
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« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2012, 04:31:17 pm »
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A vote was held yesterday in the Mideast Region on where we'd like our regional university to be located, and we have selected Elkhart, Indiana. We formally request that it be selected as the location for our regional university. Smiley
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« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2012, 09:16:51 pm »
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The IDS formally requests to receive funds from among the $8 billion to be dedicated to high speed transit in yonder locales:

Charlotte-Raleigh to Rocky Mount
Charlotte-Raleigh to Greenville to Atlanta
Charlotte-Raleigh to Charleston to Atlanta
Tampa to Lakeland to Orlando to Melbourne to Port St. Lucie to Miami
Atlanta to Birmingham to Jackson to New Orleans to Houston
New Orleans to Little Rock to Memphis to Atlanta
Memphis to Nashville to Charlotte-Raleigh
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« Reply #23 on: October 04, 2012, 07:05:16 pm »
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Nashville to Charlotte-Raleigh

I request from the Department of Internal Affairs at their earliest convenience a study of the environmental impacts and the technological feasibility of this specific segment.
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« Reply #24 on: October 04, 2012, 07:10:36 pm »
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The Northeast requests $8 billion for rapid bus transit systems to be established or expanded in the following counties:

Penobscot, ME
Kennebec, ME
Keene, NH
Broome, NY
Chautauqua, NY
Oswego, NY
Jefferson, NY
Ontario, NY
Tompkins, NY
Steuben, NY
Wayne, NY
Chemung, NY
Centre, PA
Beaver, PA
Butler, PA
Cambria, PA
Blair, PA
Lycoming, PA
Adams, PA
Rutland, VT
Washington, VT
Windsor, VT

Edit: I incorrectly referred to Washington County, VT by the name of its largest city, Montpelier.
Provisionally granted.

These projects are shovel-ready. When will the Northeast receive official approval for the disbursement of these funds?
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