TriMet Confirms That Orange Line Will Go Through Downtown After All, But Details Still Unclear

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Several months ago I raised my concerns about TriMet’s decision to give the upcoming Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail line its own color (the Orange Line) rather than simply extending the Yellow Line south through downtown, allowing riders to travel from one end of the region to the other on a single train. Even with the Orange Line name, I had hoped that at the very least the trains would be interlined through downtown with the Green or Yellow Line, but a TriMet spokesperson told me on a tour quite definitively that Orange Line trains would stop at Union Station and would not be interlined with existing service.

Well, none other than Neil McFarlane (General Manager of TriMet) has confirmed that the information I had been given was incorrect, and that Orange Lines actually will interline with Yellow or Green Line trains through downtown. He said that normally TriMet does not come up with a color designation until closer to the opening of a line, so that they can do a thorough analysis of the proper service design, but in this case the color Orange was chosen early on even though they always expected most trains to interline with Yellow Line trains. He did not really have an explanation for the early choice to separately brand the line, but defended the choice based on the operational flexibility gained by being able to interline with either Green or Yellow trains as needed.

While this is welcome news compared with the prospect of trains terminating downtown for no reason, it still presents a pointlessly complicated and confusing situation for both riders and operations. For riders, it means that someone getting on an Orange Line train from Milwaukie whose destination is past downtown will have to consult a schedule to determine if that train will turn into a Yellow train or a Green train. It means someone boarding a train at Rose Quarter Transit Center will have to figure out if their train will go through to Milwaukie or stop at PSU. It means the system map will likely show the lines as being totally separate (see map above) even though in practice they will not be.

For operators, it means trains will have to switch colors at some point and communicate that to riders. Imagine for a moment how many times a day you will have to hear over the intercom, “Attention ladies and gentlemen, just a reminder that this Yellow Line train is now an Orange Line train.” Imagine how confusing that will be for anyone who is not a daily commuter. And where exactly will this color switch take place? Rose Quarter or Union Station? South Waterfront or PSU? There is really no good answer to this, which will make it a real challenge to operate and for riders to understand.

Neil also defended the “flexibility” of interlining with Yellow or Green trains as needed because he claimed the demand on the Orange Line will require different frequencies than the other lines. I very much doubt that is true. The Yellow and Green Lines both currently operate at roughly 15-minute headways all day, and that should be plenty of capacity for the Orange Line as well. It’s not as if Milwaukie is anticipated to become a high-density urban center anytime soon. All these MAX Lines are going out to low- to medium-density areas that we hope will become more dense in the future. Hopefully they will all be able to justify 5- or 10-minute headways someday, but for now there is just not enough ridership to justify higher frequency, especially when bus service is suffering under the weight of repeated cuts to the Frequent Network.

In any case, there is still no valid reason not to simply extend the Yellow Line south and keep things simple. It’s better for riders and easier to operate. We can save the color Orange for another line down the road. I urge TriMet to think this through and not feel like they are stuck with this name because someone years ago thought it would be a good idea–it’s not. If the name is still kept, I hope they strive to make the switch between colors as clear as possible and find a good way to communicate to riders that they can indeed ride through downtown and out the other side.

Zef Wagner is pursuing a Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree at Portland State University, specializing in transportation planning. He will graduate in June 2013 and is currently seeking employment.

56 Comments

56 Responses to TriMet Confirms That Orange Line Will Go Through Downtown After All, But Details Still Unclear

  1. Cora Potter
    April 17, 2013 at 11:21 am Link

    For the sake of some of the DD folks that use that corridor, I certainly hope they drop the orange line designation and use Green or Yellow as the line color depending on the final destination of any particular run.

  2. DNF
    April 17, 2013 at 11:22 am Link

    Totally agree. Even if they want to alternate the yellow/green lines, then just both lines all the way out, then people know exactly where the train is going. This is a pointless and confusing designation.

  3. Allan
    April 17, 2013 at 11:29 am Link

    This should be a non-problem. Other posters have already found the obvious solution. Don’t actually have an orange line. Make both yellow and green lines on the map go to Milwaukie and then have some of them terminate downtown if needed. Much ado about nothing

  4. Ross Williams
    April 17, 2013 at 11:54 am Link

    The colors ought to be used for the trains’ destinations instead of for routes.

  5. al m
    April 17, 2013 at 12:25 pm Link

    Put me down for one longer route either yellow or green

  6. dan w
    April 17, 2013 at 3:19 pm Link

    Make the Milwaukie line an extension of Yellow and extend Green along Barbur (assuming there’s ever Barbur LRT).

  7. Douglas K.
    April 17, 2013 at 4:33 pm Link

    Yeah, run the Yellow line to Milwaukie. I really don’t get the point of a separate Orange line at this point. It’s not like we turn the Blue line Purple when it travels through downtown.

  8. Lane Jensen
    April 17, 2013 at 5:27 pm Link

    3 light rail lines through downtown??? How many problems do we have already along the Banfield already when a train has to stop? It affects the entire system for miles. 3 lines will NOT do any good. Here’s a great idea: Run the dam RED LINE to Milwaukie. No overlapping to Beaverton TC, and we still have the service. See? Problem solved.

  9. dwainedibbly
    April 17, 2013 at 5:36 pm Link

    I like the idea of running it as a “Chartreuse line”, to Milwaukie. Seriously, please extend both yellow & green along the new route. It will be so much simpler for riders. Most will be going downtown but for those going farther it will be important to know exactly where a given train is headed. Wasn’t this covered in Public Transportation 101?

    Mrs Dibbly is excited about the prospects of a Purple line in the SW corridor.

  10. zefwagner
    April 18, 2013 at 9:19 am Link

    I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one baffled that they ever came up with the Orange Line name. It just doesn’t make any sense, and I hope they realize it isn’t too late to drop it.

  11. al m
    April 18, 2013 at 9:25 am Link

    I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one baffled that they ever came up with the Orange Line name. It just doesn’t make any sense, and I hope they realize it isn’t too late to drop it.

    ~~~>Don’t you have some sort of affiliation with them, someone sent something to me about you once.
    It listed you as an intern or something.
    You have a better in there than any of us.

  12. Michael, Portland Afoot
    April 18, 2013 at 9:28 am Link

    Lady friend has brilliant suggestion to resolve this issue: “Citrus Line.”

  13. al m
    April 18, 2013 at 9:31 am Link

    Ya HERE!

    Disclaimer: Zef Wagner is currently a Service Planning and Scheduling Intern at TriMet.

  14. EngineerScotty
    April 18, 2013 at 10:02 am Link

    @Al,

    Zef’s internship at TriMet is no secret (and may be in fact over, given that the current article states he is seeking employment in the field). I’m not sure why you consider it relevant.

    @Michael,

    We could call it the “Limon” line.

  15. EngineerScotty
    April 18, 2013 at 10:02 am Link

    @Al,

    Zef’s internship at TriMet is no secret (and may be in fact over, given that the current article states he is seeking employment in the field). I’m not sure why you consider it relevant.

    @Michael,

    We could call it the “Limon” line.

  16. zefwagner
    April 18, 2013 at 10:20 am Link

    Yes, I was an intern for 6 months in the Service Planning department (finished up in December), which has absolutely nothing to do with the Portland-Milwaukie Line at this point. They will get involved closer to opening and will hopefully be able to come up with a good system for operations. I hope TriMet folks consider what I have to say, but I wouldn’t say I have any special sway with them from having been an intern.

    Michael, I love it! If they just extended both Yellow and Green south, it would be the Lemon-Lime Line. They could save Orange for SW Corridor, then use Grapefruit for another future line.

  17. Jeff F
    April 18, 2013 at 12:02 pm Link

    There are already trains (usually very early pull outs and very late pull ins) that change from, say, a Blue Line to a Yellow Line at the Rose Quarter. The overheads change as the train approaches the station and internal announcements are made automatically (no operator intervention needed).

    Internal announcements already include the destination, along with the color designation, so a northbound train from Milwaukie would likely announce as “this is an Orange Line train to Expo Center” at each station (or CTC, obviously).

    The TriMet trip planner would put the customer on the correct through-routed train, just as bus and rail through-routes are handled now. I doubt the map above is anything close to a final design in regard to the Orange Line through downtown.

    This is all my personal experience and observation and not an official TriMet statement.

  18. al m
    April 18, 2013 at 12:17 pm Link

    Cause ZEF has internal contacts there so he could ask directly about any of this.

    Who’s actually making these decisions anyway?

    Somebody is.

  19. al m
    April 18, 2013 at 12:37 pm Link

    Ya know what?
    How come there is no official Trimet representative that comments on this blog.
    After all Portland Transport is a recognized media source.
    Somebody should ask Mcfaralane to appoint one of the pubic relations people to respond to posts here.

  20. EngineerScotty
    April 18, 2013 at 1:00 pm Link

    Mary Fetsch has occasionally posted here, but whether or not TriMet officials wish to do so is up to them. At one point, early in this blog’s existence, many public officials would write guest articles (and AFAIK they’re still welcome to do so)–see our contibutors list), but that hasn’t happened in some number of years.

    Of course, the same applies to union officials as well.

    And of course, the standard disclaimer would apply to all such submissions: guest posts are solely the opinions of their authors, etc…

  21. al m
    April 18, 2013 at 1:26 pm Link

    Mary posts things in response to things you post, at least that is what I remember.

    I do remember many guest posts from actual ‘officials’.

    When you see Mcfarlane Chris tell him that Portland Transport requests an ‘official’ representative from Trimet be available to answer questions and provide information here.

    Steve Banta used to talk about having an actual internal Trimet blog where public and employees could actually enter into discourse with real life ‘officials’.

    Mcfarlane says he wants to bring tansparency into his agency, this would be a good place to start.

    (I’ll even promise not to embarrass any ‘trimet official’ that assumes that role)

  22. dan w
    April 18, 2013 at 1:50 pm Link

    We could call it the “Limon” line.

    If they just extended both Yellow and Green south, it would be the Lemon-Lime Line. They could save Orange for SW Corridor, then use Grapefruit for another future line.

    If we’re going with the citrus theme, why not just package all the lines as the Sprite™ Line? It would make it easier to get a corporate sponsorship :)

  23. was carless
    April 18, 2013 at 1:51 pm Link

    I vote for a light-green line:

    yellow + green = light green

    So not complicated!

    “Attention riders: this GREEN LINE train to downtown Portland is now the LIGHT-GREEN train to downtown Milwaukie.”

  24. Jim Lee
    April 18, 2013 at 2:49 pm Link

    Yo CITRUS dudes!

    I was there many months ago, and you are leaving out:

    BLOOD ORANGE;
    MEYER LEMON;
    CARA CARA;
    POMELLO;
    MANDARIN;
    CLEMENTINE.

    Not to mention the ever-popular BERGAMOT, which gives Earl GREY tea its flavor.

    The only problem is that we would have to let something rot to get the BLUE line.

  25. dwainedibbly
    April 18, 2013 at 5:19 pm Link

    If it goes to Clackistan, it should be the Brown line….

  26. zefwagner
    April 18, 2013 at 7:42 pm Link

    Jeff F, a few late-night color and route switches are one thing (few people are on the train), a constant all-day thing is another. If you can tell me a legitimate reason to switch from yellow to orange and back again on the same line all day long, I’d like to hear it. I also object to your comment that the trip planner will just figure it all out for people. True, but people still rely on maps to get an idea of the network and find their way around, and that is something a trip planner can’t do. There are also lots of people who do not use the trip planner because it is a technological solution that requires a certain level of technical know-how and material well-being.

  27. VS
    April 18, 2013 at 8:58 pm Link

    But but but we want to be able to say we have 5 light rail lines, not just 4. Otherwise, what’s the point in building this thing, amiright? A simple extension of the yellow line won’t do for the fanfare we’re looking for.

    Also, no one has suggested the Plum Line yet.

  28. Lenny Anderson
    April 18, 2013 at 9:08 pm Link

    Primary colors: Red, Blue, Yellow
    Secondary colors: Green, Orange, Purple
    Check out the next rainbow. Its that simple. But I think the Yellow should just run on south to Milwaukie, with an occasional Green switching over (as Reds now do) as needed.

  29. John Sporseen
    April 18, 2013 at 10:00 pm Link

    I recently emailed TriMet and questioned why the Yellow line did not simply go through town and out to Milwaukie. I got an answer that was not especially clear to me but am enjoying the opinions given in this forum. Just ffor interests sake, I have also suggested in the past that the TriMet Red LIne head toward Hillsboro and take a right turn and use the right-of-way still owned by ODOT Rail and parallel Cornelius Pass Road to Highway 26. A Park and Ride Station there would take some pressure off the Sunset Transit Center. Who would use that line? I would have a number of times when going to the Portland Airport. Since money obviously is not available it is just probably a pie-in-the-sky suggestion anyway.

  30. Jeff F
    April 19, 2013 at 12:01 pm Link

    zefwagner, after nearly 30 years in customer information I’ve developed a high regard for our customers’ capacity for comprehension — especially for regular commuters who only care that the bus or train will get them to their destination. I’m not going to speculate on the rationale; I’m simply suggesting that it need not be particularly confusing.

    The online trip planner generated more than 250,000 itineraries last month and this figure does not reflect phone calls for live trip planning or any third party apps. But I did not suggest that this would eliminate whatever confusion may exist, merely that it considerably reduces it — as it does on the large number of through-routed bus lines.

    Again, this is entirely my own opinion and does not reflect and is not sanctioned by my employer.

  31. Chris I
    April 19, 2013 at 12:42 pm Link

    If everyone had a smartphone with google maps and could use their transit directions for every trip, I don’t think this would be a problem. Maybe you should talk with your employer about their opinions on this issue. ;)

  32. Cora Potter
    April 19, 2013 at 2:11 pm Link

    Jeff F and Chris I – you’re making the assumption that all transit users will have the cognitive skills needed – based on your experience with….people who have the cognitive skills to use the trip planner or call 238-RIDE.

    There are plenty of people who use transit that are not able to do either, but they’re perfectly capable of using transit as long as you don’t make it a cognitive challenge that requires trip planning, schedules and/or consulting 238-RIDE.

  33. Chris I
    April 19, 2013 at 2:20 pm Link

    I guess I should have clarified. I was pointing out the a majority of people do not have this capability. Making this the orange line is idiotic. Extend the yellow line to Milwaukie, and change green line trains over at PSU if additional service is needed.

  34. Jeff F
    April 19, 2013 at 2:28 pm Link

    Cora, I’ve worked on projects focusing on transit information for people with cognitive issues so, no, I’m not making any assumptions based on other people. But I would never be comfortable with such a person traveling anywhere without some form of trip planning in advance and without very specific clues for navigation. I would never, for example, tell someone (anyone) to get on the Yellow Line absent any other information. The most critical information is the destination. Line color is helpful but of less value than “you want the train that goes to the Expo Center.”

  35. Diane Goodwin
    April 19, 2013 at 2:58 pm Link

    Hi Zef, Just a quick note. Not sure if you met John Griffiths during your internship.He is the planner who does all the analysis on MAX lines colors and interlining. He is incredibly thoughtful and tireless in making sure he gets the service plan correct in the short and long term. Would you and a few other planners be interested in meeting with him to better understand the process and analysis? I think he is the right person to answer your questions in this area.

    Diane Goodwin, TriMet
    goodwind@trimet.org

  36. Cora Potter
    April 19, 2013 at 3:05 pm Link

    Jeff- that’s exactly the problem. If all orange lines terminate at Union Station that will be the destination displayed. You won’t know the final destination of the train until the line designation changes color at Union Station. Consulting schedules could help mediate some of this – but if TriMet is intending to have the flexibility they are implying, schedules won’t help.

    If you’re helping a person with intellectual differences try to get from Milwaukee to some point along the green or yellow alignments, having to explain that if the color/destination of the train changes to the alignment their stop is not on, they need to get off and transfer is a huge hurdle. It also creates an unnecessary temporal barrier (having to catch a train at a specific time and hope it’s not one that gets re-routed to avoid confusion) that other riders without intellectual differences aren’t limited by – so in a sense it intentionally creates a lower level of service for people with intellectual differences.

  37. Douglas K.
    April 19, 2013 at 4:34 pm Link

    All of the ideas posted here make better sense than a new “Orange line.” Why NOT just extend both the Yellow and Green line to Milwaukie, with some trains from each line turning around at PSU? It seems to me that would be easier to understand from a rider’s perspective. Get on a Yellow or Green Line southbound and it will go to either “Milwaukie” or “PSU”. From a northbound platform on the new Southeast line, you could catch a train to either “Expo” (Yellow) or “Clackamas” (Green). As several people have noted, what riders really need to know is “where is this train going?” Of course, we could have a northbound “orange” line that says “Expo” or “Clackamas” on it … but then what’s the point of making it Orange at all?

    That said, I’d be interested in hearing John Griffiths’ explanation. There are a lot of intelligent people with a lot of expertise in transit posting here, and none of them seem able to make sense of the “Orange Line” decision thus far.

  38. Nathanael
    April 19, 2013 at 9:03 pm Link

    I have been seriously annoyed by “identity change” trains in the past in other cities. Here’s why. Colors have been changed to protect the guilty.

    I looked at the map and I figured out my route. I ride the Yellow Line to station X, then I get out and wait for an Orange Line train and catch it the rest of the way.

    Comes the day, I get off the train at station X. I turn around and discover that, unbeknownst to me, the train has CHANGED into an Orange Line train while I was on it. Of course, its doors have closed and it’s leaving.

    Then I had to wait 10 minutes for the next Orange Line train, while the other colored routes showed up…

    It’s simply not the way you should do it. Clarity is valuable.

    Now, it’s not clear that the “colored line” system is actually the best. If you’re going to run “color changing” operations of the sort which TriMet appears to plan to do, it makes more sense to simply sign each train by its terminating point and forget the colors.

    The only reason you wouldn’t do this, is if trains could take two different routes to the terminating point. Then you’d need to have “via XXX” as well, which gets annoying and complicated, and explains why systems with complex networks use line names and numbers.

  39. Jim Karlock's Dad
    April 20, 2013 at 9:03 am Link

    I think the Orange line designation is a temporary solution and more of a place holder than anything.

    It’s difficult to compare Portland’s transport system to other cities’ transport.

    For one thing, cities like New York have established systems with many lines. They may still be expanding, but the system is essentially “finished”.

    That’s not the case in Portland. The rail system is far from finished. Even when the Barbur route is completed, and possibly a LRT extension into Washington County and a few other improvements like more streetcar lines and possibly BRT on Powell or more commuter rail, the system won’t be finished. They will absolutely need a downtown subway in order to create a legitimate mass transit system.

    If there were billions of dollars available, I’m sure they’d build all that stuff in the next decade. Instead, they’ll have to do it piecemeal over the coming 50 years.

    The Milwakie LRT may be Orange for now. Once they complete the Barbur line my guess is that they’ll push for a downtown subway solution of some sort. At that point, they will have to reconfigure the lines as they wish because the bottleneck at the Steel Bridge will be eliminated.

    It’s likely that at that point the Interstate line will start in Vancouver and head all the way down to Milwaukie.
    The Clackamas line will probably continue on Barbur, and the Red line will head over to northern Hillsboro or south through Beaverton. Maybe both.

  40. al m
    April 20, 2013 at 9:52 am Link

    Jim Karlocks Dad?

    I envision the day that a high speed light rail line, suitably color coded, will run all the way from San Diego California , right on up to Bellingham Washington, and with a little cooperation from the Canadians right on to Vancouver!

  41. Nick theoldurbanist
    April 20, 2013 at 11:34 am Link

    Right Al, if you’re going to dream, might as well dream big.

    Given the current political and financial realities, there will be no more LRT in Portland for at least the next 20 years. However BRT on Powell is likely sometime in the future.

  42. John Powell
    April 20, 2013 at 11:39 am Link

    I think the Orange line designation is a temporary solution and more of a place holder than anything.

    I doubt it. Someday, TriMet might actually need a new color for a line. Unless they plan never to use orange, it would cause at least some confusion and embarassment when they again market an Orange Line (Google never forgets).

    I’m interested in hearing John Griffiths’ explanation as well, because right now it sounds like marketing over logic.

  43. Chris Whitmer
    April 20, 2013 at 12:50 pm Link

    The green line was a yellow line extension, all yellow line trains (for the most part.) Turn into green lines at the downtown turnaround. The orange line was always designed that way. It’s not that big of a deal. You have to terminate downtown for operator breaks anyway. after the break it’ll switch to either a yellow or a green line. and vice versa. That way trains can go where there most needed.

  44. zefwagner
    April 20, 2013 at 8:07 pm Link

    Chris Whitmer, why would operators take breaks downtown? The Blue and Red Lines do not stop downtown so operators can take breaks. Also, the only viable place to do that is at PSU, and you wouldn’t want a northbound train ending at PSU.

  45. Jeff F
    April 22, 2013 at 8:55 am Link

    Jeff- that’s exactly the problem. If all orange lines terminate at Union Station that will be the destination displayed. You won’t know the final destination of the train until the line designation changes color at Union Station. Consulting schedules could help mediate some of this – but if TriMet is intending to have the flexibility they are implying, schedules won’t help.

    I obviously wasn’t clear in an earlier comment. The actual destination of a vehicle should/would be part of the description from the beginning of the trip and at all subsequent stations. Hence, “This is an Orange Line train to Expo Center” would be the appropriate announcement. The exterior of MAX trains doesn’t give much of a visual cue about the Line, especially if you miss seeing the small colored light on the front. Overheads are the most visible indication and they are about the destination.

  46. Cora Potter
    April 22, 2013 at 9:12 am Link

    So, would an Orange line train departing Milwaukie be an Orange Line to Clackamas?

    This would mean that the orange color would run on two different alignments – one northbound and one eastbound/southbound, which essentially means there really is no Orange alignment. So, why bother keeping the color designation?

  47. EngineerScotty
    April 22, 2013 at 9:21 am Link

    So, why bother keeping the color designation?

    It is redundant, on MAX, with the endpoint of a run–given any starting point and ending point, there’s only one reasonable way to get there.

  48. Jeff F
    April 22, 2013 at 10:28 am Link

    Cora, I have no argument in favor of using any color treatment, but I’m also in favor of dropping route names entirely and limiting it to numbers. I’m pretty sure I’m an outlier.

    Some of our visitors are confused that the Red Line trains aren’t actually red.

  49. zefwagner
    April 22, 2013 at 10:42 am Link

    There is an inherent value to using a color, number, letter, whatever, to show on a map the typical operation of a line. It is way easier for people to plan their lives around transit if they can visualize the patterns of transit in their city. You don’t get that from relying solely on trip planners and destination signs. It is also a lot better if those lines are simple and direct, without unnecessary branching. That’s why I don’t like this idea of trains from Milwaukie going to either Expo Center or Clackamas depending on the train, unless it was shown as overlapping green and yellow lines and it happened all the time. I doubt the Milwaukie Line will operate at twice the frequency of Yellow or Green, so it wouldn’t really work that way.

  50. Anandakos
    April 22, 2013 at 11:07 am Link

    Zef,

    Clackamas County now has Max service only from the “Green Line”. The good burghers of that esteemed polis are offended to be associated in any way with “Green” activities, which are way too “Portlandia”.

    In fact, they are incandescent with anger at the thought; they flare like the sun.

    Therefore, they have been awarded the “Orange” color.

  51. Jeff F
    April 22, 2013 at 11:17 am Link

    Cora, I have no argument in favor of using any color treatment, but I’m also in favor of dropping route names entirely and limiting it to numbers. I’m pretty sure I’m an outlier.

    Some of our visitors are confused that the Red Line trains aren’t actually red.

  52. Chris I
    April 22, 2013 at 12:39 pm Link

    The only place I’ve visited that actually color-codes their trains with the line is Boston. I don’t know why anyone would expect the train to be colored. 99% of cities do not do that.

  53. Cameron J
    April 22, 2013 at 4:30 pm Link

    I certainly support a yellow/orange line, for a North South MAX line. Makes the most sense, as opposed to a horseshoe Green/Orange line. The 31 goes between Clackamas and Milwaukie a ton faster than a horseshoe line would.

    I also think names are vital to describe bus routes. For people new to the city or transit system, that’s their way of K knowing where to go. I mean, would half of you even know what the 25 or 46 or 156 went if you just had the number? People need to know where their buses go.

  54. jim karlock's dad
    April 22, 2013 at 8:09 pm Link

    So what color will the Barbour line be?

    I like it when service routes have a color and a number.. I think the current streetcar naming system is ridiculous. Portland thinks so small town sometimes its sad

  55. Chris Whitmer
    April 26, 2013 at 1:10 am Link

    zef, they switch out and use the restroom at the jackson turnaround already. There is a siding next to union station with a break room nearby. That IS how trimet will do it. Yellow lines turn into green ones. Thats how they’ll stay. The redline used to terminate downtown as well. In fact the incredibly long blue line is the exception, but you see the operator if he isnt running late has longer breaks. (That’s what I was told a while ago.) it takes 35 mins for the yellow line run and then 40 for the green. they dont always take breaks at the ends and downtown, but thats where they switch. otherwise putting extra trains on those lines especially in certain areas would take MUCH longer.

    Orange line trains will leave from one of the existing yards so the only line they’ll extend from ironicly is the blue line.

  56. Aaron G
    April 26, 2013 at 2:57 am Link

    If everyone had a smartphone with google maps and could use their transit directions for every trip, I don’t think this would be a problem. Maybe you should talk with your employer about their opinions on this issue. ;)

    TriMet could furnish a lot of the riding advantages users with smartphones have to more people (without giving them gizmos) if they wanted. Just need more gizmos at the platforms, install the trip planner there. Preferably not as a terrible kiosk, but just a map that looks like a map until you’re lost and then you can engage it by tapping destinations and whatnot or perhaps even talking.

    Inside trains, the maps should have a flashing arrow for where they are now and direction they’re headed, little red/green/blue/yellow dots for its path ahead (including crazy changes if any) etc. You could almost do it just by hacking up an actual map with a bunch of LEDs or something.

    they switch out and use the restroom at the jackson turnaround already

    Didn’t know driver amenities were there, I figured it was all racks of equipment. That’s been running for a year now I believe, I wonder if the power output was as predicted.

    I like to imagine there is a phase 2 where the facility keeps an array of batteries charged, plumbed into the catenary power supply so in event of power outages LRVs can get to the next platform.

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