Neighborhood Association (SNA) is working toward the goal of a PRT feeder from their
neighborhood at the North end of Milpitas to the Great Mall Transit
Center (LRT, buses and future BART) at the South end 3.5 miles
away. PRT is a new technology, so it makes sense to limit
our risk by starting small with a minimal system of two stations and
a loop connecting them. People get on at one station and ride
to the other station. We could use such a system to safely
"ferry" people over the railroad tracks between Yosemite
Drive and Curtis Avenue near the Great Mall and LRT station.
(Over the years, various City documents have called for a pedestrian/cyclist crossing at that
location.) Such a demonstration system, costing less than a standard steel-and-concrete pedestrian bridge, will allow
us to verify PRT technology before we decide about expanding the
system to service Sunnyhills.
of being the first City to implement PRT are attractive. If
we're first, the Milpitas PRT will become both a regional and a
national tourist attraction bringing fame, acclaim, and extra tax
dollars. Being first will allow us to pay less; outside funding
from groups interested in our "experimental project" will
help reduce our portion of construction costs from the standard 20%
to only 10% -- or even less. (It could be argued that Milpitas
shouldn't pay anything because we're taking the "risk" of
being first.) Being first will also put us in the lead for
funding of extensions to the Library, Sunnyhills, and perhaps the
BART station in Fremont. Because PRT is scalable, i.e. it works
as a small or large system, we can grow the system over time as need
and opportunities arise.
The Milpitas PRT "ferry" over the railroad tracks will connect Curtis Avenue with Yosemite Drive at the north end of the Great Mall.
The blue dots indicate the general location of the two stations. The green dot shows the LRT station above Main Street.
A first step
for any public works project is writing an Environmental Impact
Report (EIR) which, for this "ferry" project, will cost
about $50,000. SNA will apply for grant funding from
foundations and other sources. Many foundations will want to
contribute because PRT addresses environmental issues, social equity
and transportation issues, and also provides a model that can be
repeated in most cities in our nation.
help. In addition to foundation funding, SNA is inviting $5
pledges from people who are willing to back this "ferry"
with $5 of their own money. After the first $45,000 in grant
funding is secured, we'll return to those who pledged $5 to
collect. Your pledge will demonstrate the public support which
makes the grant funding part even easier. If you'd like to
participate in this experiment in democracy, contact Rob Means at
408-262-0420 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also print the pledge form at
What is PRT?
- Cabs (right) are small, light-weight, and electric powered. Each cab accomodates 1 to 3 people and travels 20-40 mph. Computer-controlled operation provides 24/7 service and safety.
Click here for a 30-second video of Skyweb Express (pictured).
- Guideways (left), with a diameter of only 3 feet, can be routed through small spaces
and even into buildings. Support posts rise every 60-90 feet from a 2 ft2 footprint.
- Stations (right) are 1) small, 2) spaced about 1/2 mile apart, and 3) off the main line so cabs can proceed non-stop
to their destinations. Stations may be elevated or at ground level; elevated stations include elevators. Stations include cameras for security and storage for idle cabs.
Click here for a 3-minute video introduction to PRT technology.
In this first photo, we are looking west along Yosemite Drive where it curves south to become Gibraltar Drive.
Gibraltar Court enters from the right. The yellow circle highlights the corridor that PRT will use to cross over the tracks to Curtis Avenue.
Running between buildings #3 and #4 is a City easement for underground utilities. On the far side of the tracks, telephone/utility poles line Curtis Avenue.
At the west end of the Flextronics parking lot, behind the cyclone fence, is a 30-foot wide security drive. Beyond that lies the 50-foot wide railroad right-of-way that is bordered by two cyclone fences.
The railroad right-of-way is easily spanable by a PRT guideway. Just beyond the tracks you see a white utility truck parked. The cars in the background are on Curtis Avenue.
Request for support.
Help the Sunnyhills
Neighborhood Association (SNA) demonstrate public support -- pledge
$5 for an EIR.
SNA plans to acquire $45,000 from
foundations and other sources for an Environmental Impact Report
(EIR), the first step toward implementing a public works project like
this. After raising the $45,000, those who pledge $5 will be
contacted for their contribution. Make your pledge today for
clean, energy-efficient, quick and reliable transportation.
$5 for an EIR.
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