KC Light Rail

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Star editorial: “Seattle offers hope”

We like Seattle. It happens to be very late to the light rail table, just like our beloved metropolis (although they did keep their trolleybuses). One wonders if they were getting "served" in the transit game by their smaller and scrappier neighbor to the south (Portland); kinda like we're a decade late to the light rail party that started in St. Louis circa 1993. Yup, they're on their next expansion already and we're stuck on Step 1 of 12. The Star's editorial page today reminds KC residents that — duh! — our situation is neither unique nor any more complicated than what othere cities have gone through.

8 Comments so far

  1. northlander September 24th, 2007 3:56 pm

    If Chicago was in the red $55 million and they have a million riders a day, I think with 50,000 riders a day in Kansas City we better take along hard look at Light Rail.

  2. crasho September 24th, 2007 10:06 pm

    i read somewhere that Portland was facing a huge crime wave attached to its light rail line. seems the thugs are attacking riders as they depart then hopping on the next train before anyone can figure out what happened. the police are flummoxed. it seems there was some data stating that crime along light rail lines is multiple times higher than in regular neighborhoods, on the streets, or even on buses. i’ll have to search my files for that article; it was a doozy. if i find it i’ll surely post it here.

  3. Dave September 25th, 2007 8:51 am

    the article is here:


    light rail is first mentioned in the 8th paragraph. everyone can judge for themselves based on the actual context.

  4. Dave September 25th, 2007 11:06 am

    attribution is required or your comment will be deleted.

  5. Scott Mercer September 25th, 2007 6:21 pm

    Well, here in Los Angeles it’s well known that the light rail, specifically the Blue Line that goes through South Los Angeles, Watts and Compton (gang central) is neutral and does not “belong” to any gang in particular. There is minimal crime on board the light rail and subways.

    Sheriff’s officers frequently ride the trains, though not as often as I would like. They are mostly there to check fares, but they also keep a lid on any “incidents.”

    Light rail does not necessarily equal a gang-infested, crime-ridden box that even armed police won’t ride. That may be Portland’s experience, but it didn’t happen here.

  6. crasho September 25th, 2007 9:06 pm

    who says we’ll have 50,000 riders a day in kansas city, northlander?

  7. Dave September 26th, 2007 8:17 am

    thanks, crasho. we’ll consider the source.

    on the topic of LA, that mayor is out of office and they have a new one who is pro-transit.

  8. Nick Bastian October 22nd, 2007 10:33 pm

    In many of the early light rail meetings here in PHX, there was a lot of discussion concerning crime. We have been told the stations will have good lighting, cameras and security. Our route travels many different types of neighborhoods. It will be very interesting to watch the effect on the different neighborhoods.

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