Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Lift Ogden

Perhaps the most interesting debate going on in Ogden is about the future of mass transit in the area. Ogden is a railroading town near the Golden Spike. The town loves its train station and there is a great deal of support for commuter trains. A commuter train to Salt Lake could pull some of the traffic off the bottleneck near Farmington.

While the city's history favors trains and light rail, there also an innovative idea of building a system of Gondolas in Ogden (Lift Ogden has a PDF on the Gondolas). Gondolas take advantage of the third dimension. Intercity Gondolas would be more convenient and faster for intercity transportation since a new Gondola would show up every

The Sierra Club opposes the Gondola as it would bring more people and the need for more services into the Wasatch. Since a gondola would lift people above the fray, it would increase overall appreciation of the beauty of Ogden.

Personally, I would favor mass transit devices leading into the Wasatch. A Gondola would help encourage people to leave their vehicles behind. As much as I love the train, I think the future of mass transit will be with smaller compartment sized people movers that allow for more customized transit.

Think about this for a moment: What is the most popular mass transit device in America? My guess is that elevators move substantially more people each day than trains. Our perception is that elevators conform to the needs of people while people have to conform to the needs of train.

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