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Hi! Welcome back to Eklas' realm of misinformative MS Paint drawings, lazy mapping and shameless passive aggressiveness, aka the Bliki. This week:
Does Odrava need a subway?
Here's a proposal (explanation below):
When I have time between class, I like to doodle the ideas I have for Drabantia. Recently I sketched the tram network in Odrava and tried to lay out the lines and termini. One thing I learned is that the city center is going to get absolutely clogged. And I don't mean traffic - you can just put a few restrictions on that and bam, a different part of the city gets clogged instead - but public transport.
Also I've recently added a bit to the northwestern suburbs, and it seems to me like 500,000 inhabitants are an underestimate. Odrava could realistically have 700, 800 thousand instead, even a million possibly. Seeing that cities of that size (e.g. Nuremberg) mostly have a subway network, here's a question I asked myself: Does Odrava need a subway?
The multimap above shows two hypothetical lines, Line A (in green) and Line B (in blue - note that these are also the Drabantian national colors.)
I feel like Line A would actually do a lot of work. It covers most of the western suburbs, there could be a good connection to the intercity buses going west and northwest, it would relieve the busy tram junction in Staré Město, and again in the south there could also be connection to regional buses. I will probably build at least some of this line (maybe without Zelená čtvrť.)
With line B I'm not sure. I've only marked some more important stations, but I can't shake the feeling the line wouldn't be that useful. Perhaps it could serve the airport (which is connected to the city via light rail for now), but otherwise I think trams are enough. The line would finally create the missing connection between Janovo and hlavní nádraží (as I mentioned earlier), but then it would continue to low-density suburbs.
Here's some more questions: would a subway system change the overall feeling of Odrava? After visiting Riga, Odrava somehow feels very similar to me (guess I've found my spirit city.) Riga also has some 700,000 inhabitants and is fine without any underground means of transportation. Would a subway make Odrava less cozy and more metropolitan, western, hectic?
So, what do you think? One thing I know for sure is that I'm going to wait with the subway until I finish more of Odrava.
Comments are v welcome
Feel free to express yourself
I think the northern end of the A line is too sparsely populated for a subway and it pretty doubles the railroad If I were the Odrava Mayor I would choose cheaper solution like make railroad more useful (more dense stations placement and more lanes). So at least I would build subway in T shape where northern A line and southern B line are in one line, with perpendicular branch of currrent southern end of B line. Or maybe I would realise this southern end as premetro, only partially under ground and connected with tram system in few points. But everything of it is loose conception because we can't see all urban area of the city. If two lines are really needful (but it is questionable if Odrava should have a subway - for example the same size Kraków and Łódź don't have it) the scheme looks rather expensive but reasonable. Rustem Pasha (talk) 19:28, 9 October 2017 (CEST)
Personally, not having a subway makes your capital unique ;P But yeah, I don't think a subway is particularly necessary with the high density of rail lines in Odrava, I could see something more akin to the London Overground or what Rustem was describing using the existing rails in a franchise only in Odrava that serves as what is basically public transport for the capital. Keep the tram lines still, but some of the ones going to the suburbs I think could be converted to this idea of a light-rail railway like London Overground, connecting to the main rail lines. But then all and all, I think your plans for the two subway lines are okay, though I agree about the western end of Lina A with Rustem. --Aces California (talk) 20:15, 9 October 2017 (CEST)
Methinks it depends on the car ownership parcentage. If that is low enough, your need for public transport would indeed be hign enough for your proposed subway system. If it is high, you better save your (taxpayers) money for smarter solutions. The 'Karlsruhe Model' (tram and train combined on some trajectories) maybe ? Marcello (talk) 20:45, 9 October 2017 (CEST)
I agree with @RustemPasha. I think that the southern and central segments of line A are pretty cool, but not the Zelená Čtvrt part. Also, I think the subway is kind of unnecessary. I was also thinking about a subway for Loravia back in April, but I soon realised that it was too small a city with an already pretty extensive bus network to need a subway. I think same goes for Odrava, along with it's uniqueness. You could however, have a sort of Odrava Light Rail System that would connect the suburbs together to form a kind of "circle line" around the city. I live in Geneva, a city of over half a million, and there is none of the things I mentioned. All that there is, is a very large and dense bus, trolleybus and tram network. Overall I think a subway is unnecessary for Odrava, but go with whatever you want of course. Cheers, --mfnowacki (talk) 21:16, 9 October 2017 (CEST)
I'm no public transport expert (just a nerd) but I think that the northern part of line A could easily be served with an S-Bahn style service on preexisting track and small tram network extensions (just as the eastern line B, and the cheapest way to make an efficient metro line in Odrava would be to connect the northern bit of line B and the southern part of line A. But it's always reasonable to build a bit further beyond the osiedla ;) - look up the Kabaty station of Warsaw Metro, when the station came along it was literally the end of the world, but buildings have flocked to it and now it't looks definetely better. Consider having one line of the metro and multiple commuter S-Bahn routes on regular train tracks. There are a few cities that are considering building a metro system in Poland - Cracow had a referendum, where one of the questions was whether or not people want a metro system (feedback was overwhelmingly positive), and in Łódź there will be a railway tunnel going thru the city with a few stops under the city center - It's still going to be just a regular railway but the regional train company will likely have a lot of trains going thru there and the tunnel is already being called the Łódź metro. --Trabantemnaksiezyc (talk) 21:49, 9 October 2017 (CEST)
Thanks to everyone for feedback! Everyone had some great points. I sure have to draw more at first before I can make serious decisions, and as R.P. suggested, maybe my plans with the subway were a bit overboard. Here's another thing I've realized: you can also have trams in the underground when you need to (I've seen this in a couple German cities and also Krakow.) Which is likely what I'm going to do in the city center. You can also have express tram lines (like they have in Poznań, Poland!) That would solve my biggest concern, which is commuting time. (I just had the idea of an express tram line that's partially underground and I got very excited.)
I'm also not opposed to the idea of a light rail system. I don't really want to mix the existing railways with trams, but there could be a couple branches of the tram network that extend into the rural areas. I am definitely going to introduce a system like the London Overground or S-Linien. All in all, maybe the subway won't be needed. Thanks everyone for your time and comments, I really appreciate it! --Eklas (talk) 22:07, 9 October 2017 (CEST)
I suddenly thought I gave you the wrong suggestion: you might consider the example of Bruxelles, where a group of tram lines were clustered and put underground in the city center. In a first phase, this was only a couple of isolated tunnels under complicated (road) crossings, later longer stretches of subways under the city center and in the last phase some of these were converted to 100% subway - then only one or two of the branches in the suburbs were converted to subway, with the rest remaining as feeder service. It happenend so far with the east-west en the circle line, now te north-south line (still being used by trams but with double platforms already in place for both high- and low platform vehicles) is being converted. Such a plan would keep your tram system intact but relieve the city centers' streets. Marcello (talk) 21:35, 10 October 2017 (CEST)