Tuesday, November 20, 2007

U.S. Subways Falling Apart

Nearly 25 percent of the Chicago Transit Authority's 242 miles of track — some of it elevated, some of it underground — is so shoddy that in some stretches, trains designed to travel more than 50 mph must plod along at 5 mph — about the pace of a horse at trot. The average rail car is 23 years old, and nearly one-third exceed the 25-year maximum recommended by federal authorities.


Meanwhile, back in the First World, Beijing plans to build the world's largest subway by 2020.



Anonymous said...

I'm not so sure Chicago is representative of the US. Our city and state have systematically neglected our transit system. The last President of the CTA ran the system into the ground while our mayor stood by and did nothing until it was near a breakdown, when he finally appointed a new President, who so far seems to be doing a good job. He has made getting the tracks into a good repair a top priority (you'd think this would have been the case before), eliminating those "slow zones."

I think there are other examples in the US though of positive change. Denver, Salt Lake City, Phoenix, and Los Angeles are all expanding and creating transit systems. Portland of course is leading with the first large new streetcar system. We'll see over coming months whether Chicago will receive much-needed funding to turn it's ailing system around.

Brains said...

I've never seen a subway map like that. It looks like a street map, lacking a center. It's probably the most beautiful plan I've seen!