Today’s LTE Forum uses a letter to the editor in the morning paper (subscription required) to make a crucial point about rail’s effect on congestion.
Rail won’t work without UH stop (Star-Advertiser, 1/25)
The “out-of-session” effect currently is a reduction in congestion of about 11 percent. With tens of thousands of commuters switching from driving to riding the train by 2030, the reduction in vehicle hours of delay in the urban core will be about 18 percent. In other words, rail’s effect on traffic will be 64 percent greater than the “out-of-session” effect that the writer appreciates so much.
Let’s be clear about why rail is being built. The system will provide a travel option every day of the year to those who don't want to fight congestion and sit in traffic jams. The line will be an attractive and convenient way to and from work that will completely avoid street and highway congestion.
But let’s not forget future students’ advantages in using rail even when the last leg of the trip to Manoa will be on a bus from the end of the rail line at Ala Moana Center. Taking the train and then TheBus will be quicker than driving on a traffic-clogged freeway, and it also will be extraordinarily less expensive than relying on high-priced gasoline to get to school.