OKC has the most amazingly stoopid transportation planning.

This post is guaranteed to get me another code violation, lol.

Sometimes I think those responsible for transportation planning in central Oklahoma should receive an award for the “Most Amazingly Stupid Transit Planning Anywhere”.

When I take Amtrak to Ft. Worth, I get off at a multi-modal transportation center that has everything!  Amtrak, Trinity Rail, Ft Worth City buses, taxicabs — AND the Greyhound Bus.

You’d think, with all of the Texas Envy that is so popular with our ruling aristocrats, that they might take a clue or two from the Dallas-Ft Worth regional transportation system, but I guess they just envy the no-income-tax schtick.

Comes now the news, Bus Station Buyer Pays $2 Million, in the Oklahoman, that the Greyhound Bus Depot has been sold, and the Greyhound and other inter-city buses that stop in Oklahoma City are headed east, to MLK/Eastern and East Reno, to set up shop in an empty restaurant building.

During the destruction of the most obvious place for a multi-modal transit center — our original Union Station, whose rail yard now sits under 10 lanes of concrete freeway –  there was some talk about spending multiple millions of dollars to build a “multi-modal” transportation center somewhere.

Well, I guess this article makes it crystal clear that said “multi-modal center” might be at most bi-modal (Amtrak and the new streetcar system).  City buses will not be welcome, and obviously the Greyhound Bus won’t be welcome either, since this article says that the plan is to relocate the Greyhound Bus Depot to MLK/Eastern and East Reno.  Obviously, at some point, the Greyhound Bus people were told, “You won’t be welcome at our new transit center”, so they decided to go elsewhere.

TWENTY-SIX buses a day stop at Oklahoma City. You’d think that would be worthy of some attention from our transportation planners and local politicians, but if you think that, you are obviously wrong.

The City’s transit center for the bus system is at NW 5 and Hudson.  The Amtrak station is at 100 S. E.K. Gaylord.  And speaking of that station. . . I doubt that there is an uglier Amtrak station anywhere in the nation.  Could we please get some decent lighting in the cavernous dark tunnel that connects the tracks with the parking lot?  At our old Union Station, all the tracks were at ground level. At the OKC Amtrack/Santa Fe depot, you have to go up and down a long flight of stairs (or use a sloooow elevator).  The dark parking lot can also use some light and AND SOME SECURITY LIKE A POLICE OFFICER.  It would be nice if the stained concrete was cleaned or painted. If first impressions count, the first impression of Amtrak travelers of OKC is not good. But we had to pave over the Union Station rail yard with ten lanes of concrete thus ending its potential forever as a multi-modal transit center. Sure, that was a state thing, but the OKC Council did ZILCH, NADA, NOTHING to stop that from happening..

Now the inter-city buses are headed east to MLK/Eastern and East Reno.

I care nothing about the closing of the existing depot, nor the plans of the developer who bought it to “preserve” it.

What I care about, as a customer of Greyhound Bus, Amtrak, and the city bus system, is transportation planning that makes sense, such as they have in Ft. Worth.  I swear, sometimes I am tempted to move to Dallas-Ft. Worth, especially when I see such stoopidity at work in our transportation planning and execution. But I’ve invested too much in the dirt of my property in the Gatewood Neighborhood to pull up stakes and move elsewhere.

So go ahead and send the code inspectors out to write me up, Oklahoma City goobermint.  It won’t make a damn bit of difference.

It won’t change the fact that we have the Most Amazingly Stoopid Transportation Planning.  And we are paying good money, tax money, for this incompetence.

Oops, I forgot.  OKC government doesn’t really care all that much about people who ride city buses and the inter-city bus system. So this is probably a deliberate central planning ploy so that the aristocracy with access to the new street car system won’t have to mingle with the hoi polloi riding the buses.  God save us from nouveau-riche white trash with political power.

This entry was posted in Good and Frugal Government, Peak Oil, Social Justice and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to OKC has the most amazingly stoopid transportation planning.

  1. Tom Elmore says:

    ODOT now admits “$680 million” as the current cost of their “$236 million,” 4-mile relocation of Interstate 40 through the downtown area.

    That’s $170 million per mile.

    Actual total project cost, all-direct-effects-considered? Likely well-in-excess of $1.5 billion.

    They could have redecked and improved the Old Crosstown — making it better than new — for less than $50 million. That would have left a modern highway passage plus the magnificent Union Station hub, best in the West, for handling all transit needs. Imagine what the 12-track-wide, 8-block-long OKC Union Station yard could have become with perhaps half or even a quarter of what’s inescapably going to be spent on “the New Crosstown.”

    Oh — and now ACOG wants to talk about “what we need to do to extend transit to Will Rogers Airport.” Of course — ODOT’s fine, intelligent statesmen destroyed a string-straight rail line linking Union Station directly to the northern entry to the Will Rogers Terminal facility with an already-extant spur into the Monroney FAA Center — and did it in such a way as to ensure that this rail access could never be reintroduced.

    As longtime World Bank Chief Transportation Economist Malise C. Dick wrote, back in the late 1990s — “This project violates every world standard for acceptability. It is the worst project I have ever seen.”

    Salt Lake Mayor Rocky Anderson — who’d spoken words of warning about the destruction of OKC Union Station’s rail center — called ODOT’s project “insane” in a radio interview with KGOU’s Scott Gurian.

    Now — as with the famous Oklahoma County Jail — the roadway is no more than “just opened” — and everybody finally recognizes what a goofy, backward, ugly and ultimately unmaintainable boondoggle it really is. (I note that the “taggers,” undoubtedly in awe of the REAL vandals at ODOT, are beginning to have a ball painting up those ugly concrete walls. What did ODOT figure was going to happen?)

    My only promise is this: ODOT and OKC leadership has not nearly heard the end of it. Accountability now needs to flow down like mighty, rushing waters.

  2. Pingback: Be Careful What You Ask For, Okie City - Bobaganda!

  3. okcommoner says:

    I recall asking one of the OKC transportation guys why they built the new inner city bus station in its present location. He replied “they told us to not build it anywhere close to Bricktown.”

  4. diogenes1956 says:

    Ft Worth Intermodal Center also has a car rental office. This may not be the most sustainable option for travel at your destination, but it’s important for answering people who ask “But how do I get around when I get there?”

    There’s also a Subway fast food outlet – again not the healthiest option but you can do much worse and sometimes you have to have a bite.

Leave a Reply