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Never Know What You’ll See Out The Bus Window

One of the great things about riding the bus is being able to observe the city as you pass through it…

ABOVE: An odd scene at Cass & Jefferson
ABOVE: An odd scene at Cass & Jefferson, click image for map.

…and being able to photograph something that strike’s you as odd.  A military truck parked on a pill of dirt/rocks is such an example.

This site had a building on it as recently as 1971, verified via historicaerials.com. That spot where the truck is parked was vacant in 1909 but buildings existed to the left and right. The building in the background was already there, it was Brown Shoe’s “Blue Ribbon factory”, via Sanborn maps.

The NW corner of the vacant Pruitt-Igoe site is across the street.

— Steve Patterson

 

Validate Your MetroLink Ticket

Metro has announced a change of policy regarding MetroLink ticket validation, effective today:

Starting Monday, January 7, 2013, all MetroLink tickets and 2-hour passes will need to be validated by customers prior to boarding the trains. The ticket vending machines will no longer automatically print the expiration time on these tickets or passes. This will allow customers the flexibility to purchase Metro tickets in advance of their trip, and then validate ticket when they are ready to use them. It also will eliminate confusion over whether or not tickets need to be validated. The following fares must be validated starting January 7.

  • Ride Ticket
  • Hour Pass
  • Round-Trip Tickets (each ticket immediately prior to travel)
  • Tickets from 10-Ride Ticket Booklets

I personally welcome this change, it allows buying a ticket before you need it.

ABOVE: Advance tickets must be validated as shown (top),  tickets purchased at MetroLink machines will no longer have an expiration date, these can now be purchased in advance but they must be validated
ABOVE: Advance tickets must be validated as shown (top), tickets purchased at MetroLink machines will no longer have an expiration date, these can now be purchased in advance but they must be validated
ABOVE: Red validation machines exist at entrances to all MetroLink stations/platforms
ABOVE: Red validation machines exist at entrances to all MetroLink stations/platforms

The change is already in place.

— Steve Patterson

 

MetroLink Railroad Tie Replacement Underway

December 20, 2012 Featured, Public Transit 6 Comments

Metro has been doing a lot of late night maintenance on the MetroLink light rail system.

ABOVE: Many of the wood railroad ties from the original  line have rotted
ABOVE: Many of the wood railroad ties from the original line have rotted
ABOVE: Pallets of new railroad ties ready to be installed.
ABOVE: Pallets of new railroad ties ready to be installed.

Not all of the ties are being replaced, just those needing replacement were tagged. I’ve passed by the equipment that replaces the a tie from under the rails, but I’ve never seen it in operation.

Newer sections of our MetroLink system was built with more costly concrete ties, so they’ll not need this maintenance.  The original MetroLink line opened in 1993.

— Steve Patterson

 

Olive Street Is Streetcar Ready

Most days Olive St. is pretty much deserted even though it’s a major east-west arterial.

olive.cardinal
ABOVE: Looking eastbound on Olive from Cardinal St. at 10:52am on Thursday December 6, 2012

In each direction you have a parking lane, a bike lane, and two travel lanes. I don’t know the posted speed limit but the road design is for much higher speed. Any savvy urban cyclist will use Locust St a block north even though it lacks dedicated bike lanes because Locust is narrower and has much slower traffic.

Former director of planning Rollin Stanley had suggested a green median where you could jog down the middle of Olive St. I could never figure out why someone would want to do that.

If the Partnership for Downtown St. Louis has their way Olive St. will once again have a streetcar line. Their aggressive timeline calls for it to be operational by 2016. Great if it can happen but I’d be happy with 2020. Actually I ride the #10 MetroBus often along Olive and Lindell and I’m pretty happy with it.

Much of the potential new development along the eastern part of the route could happen between Jefferson Compton avenues. If the right land-use controls are put into place first this will be very urban a decade from now. If not, we’ll have an expensive streetcar line passing by vacant/underdeveloped land.

— Steve Patterson

 

Today Is Rosa Parks Day

December 1, 2012 Featured, History/Preservation, Politics/Policy, Popular Culture, Public Transit Comments Off on Today Is Rosa Parks Day

Today marks an important day in history:

ABOVE: The #10 (Gravois-Lindell) MetroBus at Gravois & Jefferson

Most historians date the beginning of the modern civil rights movement in the United States to December 1, 1955. That was the day when an unknown seamstress in Montgomery, Alabama refused to give up her bus seat to a white passenger. This brave woman, Rosa Parks, was arrested and fined for violating a city ordinance, but her lonely act of defiance began a movement that ended legal segregation in America, and made her an inspiration to freedom-loving people everywhere. (source)

I was born less than a dozen years later, my oldest brother was 5.  I can’t imagine  the kind of trouble I’d have gotten into trying to fight racial segregation.  Or would I have thought it was the way the world worked?

— Steve Patterson

 

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