Room for one more?

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Jaiden

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'Ello all. Suppose it's only good form to do one of these introductioarymibobs even though I'm never sure what to say in them.

Name's Jaiden (no relation to Kraiden despite the power of rhyme). I'm a somewhat curmudgeonly twenty one year-old Briton, not really hugely into AB/DLism these days but it's an interest that's always lurked somewhere in the recesses of my mind even if I rarely indulge in it. A couple of people here might recognise my name from another forum and since this place seems to be on the up and attracting a lot of interest I thought I might as well pop my head in the door here as well. Probably won't be around too much but I can always be tempted into sticking an oar or two into any interesting debates that arise and I'll try and keep fairly involved as there seems to be an amiable atmosphere to the place.

In summary then, 'sup?
 

ZodiacPup

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... since this place seems to be on the up and attracting a lot of interest I thought I might as well pop my head in the door here as well.
Welcome. You're right to do so.
 

Jeremiah

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Welcome Jaiden!

Thank you for the good introduction. Feel free to stay stay and post.
 

MarcusBear

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Aloha.

Best I do one of these replythingimajigs to your introductioarymibob
 

Dream

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Welcome to site and hope you have a good time here.
 

baconbit

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Welcome to adisc. Hope you have a good time. Makes sure to check out the wiki ,and blogs; both have links in the top left corner.
 

Peachy

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Sure, there's room for one more. Just squeeze in, but don't inhale too deeply because there's not enough space for your lungs to expand, and you don't want to smell people's body odor, or smelly diapers anyway.
Oh, sorry, I was just thinking about the London Tube. Plenty of space in here still, so grab a seat and make yourself at home. ;)

Peachy
 

Jaiden

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Thanks for the welcomes guys. It seems a friendly place so far.

Peachy, I'm a Northerner so using the Tube is a fortunately infrequent experience. From the couple of times I've been to Germany, I would say that we could learn a lot from you in terms of public transport though. I was there for the last World Cup and I can't imagine the London transport system holding up as well Berlin and Hamburg seemed to with so many visitors.
 

Peachy

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Peachy, I'm a Northerner so using the Tube is a fortunately infrequent experience. From the couple of times I've been to Germany, I would say that we could learn a lot from you in terms of public transport though. I was there for the last World Cup and I can't imagine the London transport system holding up as well Berlin and Hamburg seemed to with so many visitors.
Well, you cannot compare the Tube to German transit systems...if German law ever applied in London, the Tube would have to be shut down immediately for safety reasons. In Hamburg's new DT4.5 trains, you can easily hear a pin drop when the train is in motion. That's quite amazing for a subway system which is 96 years old! :eek:
Berlin's transit system was a disaster during the Cold War because the suburban trains (S-Bahn) in the west were operated by the communist government in the east...and people decided pretty soon after the wall was built to boycot the S-Bahn. So it went into a state of disrepair and most lines in west Berlin were closed in 1980. After reunification, the German government basically had to rebuild half of the system...to present day standards, that's why it seems more efficient. The British government just doesn't spend enough money on public transit.

And yes, you can indeed learn a lot from us in terms of public transit...and you have already. EVer been on Sheffield's Supertram? As opposed to Manchester's God-awful Metrolink, Supertram was majorly influenced by German light rail developments in the 1990s and is now Britain's best light rail system.
There's one other thing you can learn over there (something that occurred to me while riding a bus in Edinburgh): Buy buses with more than one door! Transport for London did learn that lesson...they bought Geran bendy buses with three doors now ;)

Peachy
 

Jaiden

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Heh, I really wouldn't have been able to guess that this thread would turn into a discussion about European public transportation.

I'm actually from Sheffield so I'm familiar with the Supertram. It's a good service to an extent but it's coverage of the city is much more limited than the Metro's is in Manchester, it's a shame that plans to extend it never came to fruition. It also operated at a loss for several years, though I'm not sure if that's still the case. Unfortunately, the government is really quite overcommitted in terms of public spending at the moment and, with the current financial situation, I would be surprised to see any significant investments in any similar projects in British cities, apart from the crossrail in London which is more or less a necessity, that is. The powers that be just aren't willing to take on the risk even though investment is sorely needed and public demand is sadly lacking as well. You can more or less pick a European country at random and it has better transport networks than the UK even though we're one of the richest countries in the area and it's quite embarrassing. I was in Budapest a few months ago and they have the second oldest metro system in the world (behind London) which, while in need of a lick of paint, was very efficient and accommodating of public requirements in a way the Tube isn't.

Funny you should mention the new bendy buses, incidentally; they caused quite a furore in the recent mayoral elections in London with a lot of nostalgic pining for the old style Routemaster models and they've decided not to introduce any more. Make of that what you will.
 

Icey

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JAIDEN!! Welcome & yeah there is room for ya!!
 

Peachy

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I'm actually from Sheffield so I'm familiar with the Supertram. It's a good service to an extent but it's coverage of the city is much more limited than the Metro's is in Manchester,
Well, Metrolink and Supertram both have three branches currently (not counting the two stations to Herding's Park in Sheffield). So I figure they're on equal terms. Plus Metrolink only replaced national rail services on two of the three branches, so only one of them is actually a completely new addition to Manchester's transport network.
Besides, neither system is anywhere near finished. Unless you have billions to spend, you can't build the perfect system with complete coverage of the entire city in one go...especially in a country that has had no experience with light rail whatsoever until Metrolink arrived.

It also operated at a loss for several years
The idea of making a profit off public transit is a stupid notion to begin with. Those times are long past, and in our time, public transportation is beneficial to the environment, quality of life and people's schedules...benefits that cannot be figured into the price of a ticket. Decent public transit systems require continuous public spending. In my city, every citizen pays 100 Euros in tax money a year to keep the transit system going - not counting investments in new routes.
In that respect, I like the idea in America that the local council can raise sales tax for specific projects...like better public transit. So citizens of every city can make an individual decision.

Funny you should mention the new bendy buses, incidentally; they caused quite a furore in the recent mayoral elections in London with a lot of nostalgic pining for the old style Routemaster models and they've decided not to introduce any more. Make of that what you will.
I can't blame Boris (the mayor) for not wanting more of those crappy buses. My own transit authority bought three of that particular make and model (Mercedes Citaro) back in 2000. They sold them three years later because they were of disgustingly low quality. Nothing like arriving at a bus stop just to find out that the door opening buttons simply quit working and passengers cannot get out without manually opening the doors. I'm glad it happened at my stop, so it didn't inconvenience me! :D
Incidentally, my transit company bought Polish buses now. I bet they won't even last 3 years!

Peachy
 

mizzycub

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*wonders why the majority of british *b/dls seem to be northeners

Welcome to the site. Make yourself at home and you'll find it very comfortable. Just don't borrow my stash. It is pitifully small and I will kill anyone else who uses it.


You can more or less pick a European country at random and it has better transport networks than the UK even though we're one of the richest countries in the area and it's quite embarrassing.
Interesting point in there. Quality of life in a country coincides not with wealth as much as distribution of wealth. A more balanced society has a better quality of life. The UK has one of the biggest wealth gaps between the rich and the poor, hence the fact that everything seems worse compared to poorer, but more balanced countries (my dad was preaching that at me after a talk he went to, so I just wanted to shout that at someone else).

I have vivid memories of my first reaction about the transit system when I went to Frankfurt. After having a little difficulty working out that you don't buy a ticket for a particular destination I can remember the shear amazement I had at how clean it was and how it ran on time.
 

the0silent0alchemist

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by the routemaster models.. your not referring to the famous londen red busses are you, THAT admittedly would be not so good since THEY are historical icons.. despite having possible efficiancy problems..

the australian public transpor system is... well i havent really seen those of other countries.. but its OK... i think it could be better... but its alrigh where... trans are at the most 20 minutes apart and in the peak periods its often 10 minues or less, busses, wel they could be a fair bit better but well, i have no massiely outstanding complaints... except it HAS annoyed me to sometimes have busses come early due most likely getting through their route faster that time, small comfort to me who arrived half an hour late to a ONE hour lecture T_T

sometimes, from the ciy centre at about...6-6:30 it can be horrible, but for me my experiences of public transport have been good, but then again my line to the city is linear and pretty short...
 

Jaiden

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Icey, Mandi *tips hat* Nice to see some familiar faces.

Peachy, don't disagree with any of what you say about financing of public transport in principle, I would like to see more subsidising to meet the rising costs of using services these days, not to mention the environmental arguments. Unfortunately, it's just not terribly realistic in the current political and economic climate in this country so how profitable a service is is relevant.

mzkkbprmt (how on earth do you pronounce that??), what you say is very true but the interesting bit is in deciding whether it is more fair to redistribute and, some would say, artificially create balance or allow a balance to occur as it will, with those who succeed allowed to reap greater rewards without utilising their success for the benefit of others. It might be easy to say which you think is superior from a utilitarian perspective but the morality of the action of redistribution itself can still be contentious The big difference between American and European political thinking lies with that dichotomy and is something that I've always found interesting. For the record, I very much come down on the veil of ignorance>social contract>distributive justice side of things but it's a difficult area. Also, in response to your other query, it's probably because the North is great.

silent deadly alchemist, the famous red London buses are the ones in question but never fear, they're going to be around for some time yet.
 

ayanna

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It looks like we're getting a lot of new members these days....and as usual I'm late to welcome...but at least you can say you were welcomed by "The Resident B.I.T.C.H." :D

Come often, stay long! It's a friendly crowd here (for the most part).
 

Gingy

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Room for one more? Room for one more!!!!???
What do you mean is their room!?!?? Were like fricken sardines in here!!!!

OF!!! COURSE!!! THERE!!! Is room =]

Haha just making fun with the name of the thread,

Have fun on the forums!
 

PuddleFopsKit

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First of all, welcome!

Heh, I really wouldn't have been able to guess that this thread would turn into a discussion about European public transportation.
That's what its like here.. you'll find that a lot of our conversations tend to do that- but in a good way. :D

And of course there's room for one more! Even though you aren't really into the *B/DL thing, I think you'll fit in just fine. We're pretty easy to get along with, so even though you are not into the *B/DL(* represents A for adult and T for teen) lifestyle, I think you'll be able to feel comfortable here. We have a large selection of forums to choose from, and not all of them are *B related.

Also, if your interested in learning more about *B/DLism, then check out our Wiki. It has quite a lot of content and should give you a good understanding of what we are all about.


 

Peachy

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Unfortunately, it's just not terribly realistic in the current political and economic climate in this country so how profitable a service is is relevant.
Yeah, but that climate was created when (or before) you were still in (baby) diapers :D You can thank Maggie Thatcher for that - she Americanized your country quite well. So while thinking only in risk and return fared you quite well in the past years with a stronger economy than continental Europe, it's bound to come back to haunt you eventually. And (aside from the sub-prime loan crisis) public transit is just one area the American business model has a negative impact on. Ironically, Americans threw their own concept of risk-and-return out the window and are building new light rail systems like crazy. There's a new system popping up at least every year now...compared to the 5 light rail systems in the UK (Croydon (London), Manchester, Birmingham, Sheffield and Nottingham) with one more under construction (Edinburgh). Germany only came up with one completely new system - hardly surprising since we already had >50 to begin with.

The UK has one of the biggest wealth gaps between the rich and the poor

I have vivid memories of my first reaction about the transit system when I went to Frankfurt. After having a little difficulty working out that you don't buy a ticket for a particular destination I can remember the shear amazement I had at how clean it was and how it ran on time.
You've never been to America if you think the gap between rich and poor is extreme in the UK. The American university I went to had more Chinese, Indian or even German students in my classes than black students...even though black people made up almost 50% of the citizens of that state.

As for Frankfurt and their transit system: I didn't think it was that spectacular. It's absolutely necessary though for the city to have efficient public transit to get all the office workers back into their suburbs quickly. That's probably why it was relatively clean, because office workers don't litter and in turn demand clean vehicles.
Most cities also issue tickets by zones rather than destinations. It was introduced in the 60s when the companies got rid of conductors on buses and trams. The previous fare system according to stages for each line was too complicated for people to understand themselves, so the companies had to invent a simple system that everyone understands as customers would have to get their tickets themselves from then on. So they came up with fare zones. NOwadays, one municipality (city, town, borough, council whateveryoucallit) is one zone. It doesn't matter where you go within that zone, or what type of vehicle you use - the price remains the same.
London has slowly started to introduce a similar system, although you still pay different prices for different types of transit. Traveling from, say, Wimbledon to Victoria station on the Tube (District line) costs you 2.50 GBP with an Oyster Card (electronic ticket), 4 GBP with a paper ticket. Traveling in between the exact same stations on National Rail Trains costs you 2.90 GBP, and if you catch a bus you only pay 1.80 GBP (with an Oyster card), as you have to change once and pay 90p each time you board. So..same distance, three prices. Wouldn't find that in Germany - same distance, same price. Some states even made that a legal requirement!

Peachy
 
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