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Mad Park

Nice article - as a person of relatively diminutive stature (164 cm tall) I've never had to worry about low ceilings or short hotel beds. But when the first low-floor buses arrived here in Seattle they seemed so airy, and then the SLU Tram came into service - wow! Thanks for asking us to look at lowfloor from a very different perspective.

Bob Davis

The second photo is in Portland, OR. Is the first in Melbourne, Australia? And I agree, headroom is important. I belong to a railway museum where, during the 1990's, we ran an Irish double-deck tram on special occasions. On most runs, the enclosed lower deck was empty, and the open-air upper deck had all the passengers.

Jarrett at HumanTransit.org

Yes, the first pic is of a modern low-floor Melbourne tram, while the second of course is the Portland streetcar. TypePad really needs a captioning function.


Yes, I love that sense of the moving sidewalk!

Bob Davis

Thanks for confirming my guess of Melbourne; those "boat anchor" standee handholds were the clue. I visited Melbourne in Feb. 2001, and thought I had entered a parallel universe where streetcars/trams were still an important part of a city--like Los Angeles was before 1945. Melbourne also has an electric suburban system that shows what our Pacific Electric could have become if history had played out differently.

Jarrett at HumanTransit.org

Thanks for the comments! Bob, Melbourne's modern low-floor trams are very nice, designed to be roomy for standees but also comfortable to sit in when not crowded. Not at all like the pre-1945 Pacific Electric, I imagine!

Robert Sugg

____What about the height of the overhead grab bars ? Every so often I've ridden a bus, sat down, rode for a while, got up, and bonked the top of my head on the grab bar. I'm just over six feet in boots so it seems that some bars are set a little low. I haven't made a note (yet) as to which bus's have this problem.

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