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"Peak and plate"

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Alvaro Martín Gómez A., Apr 9, 2006.

  1. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Well, I don't know if that term is familiar to English-spoken people (this is just a direct Spanish translation), so let me tell you about it: Tomorrow, big works for a new massive transportation system called "Metrolínea" will start in my city. Due to that, the already congested ways won't be able to receive the regular traffic flow, so the mayor, along with the transit authorities, adopted this system to reduce the vehicular flow during the peak hours based on the last digit of cars' license plate (hence the name).

    At first, they told us that the cars which licenses' last digit are 1,2,3 and 4 won't be out on Mondays, 5,6,7 and 8 on Tuesdays, 9,0,1 and 2 on Wednesdays, 3,4,5 and 6 on Thursdays and 7,8,9 and 0 on Fridays. It was OK. I was prepared for leaving my car at home on Mondays and Thursdays (my license's last digit is 4).

    But suddenly they changed their minds and now the thing is like this: Cars which license plate's last digit is an even number can go out during the peak hours, but not during the rest of the day on even-numbered days. On odd-numbered days, even-numbered cars can't go out during peak hours, but can circulate during the rest of the day.

    That's difficult for me! It would be OK if I had one single working place, but I work at two universities and most of the times I have to move from one to another between 12:00 M. and 2:00 P.M. with no gaps in my schedule. Seems like a real hassle for me. And I'm picturing those vampires who work as transit agents training themselves to catch every car they can. For the first two weeks, the fine will be just "educational" but later it will be effective ($$$$). At the current exchange rate, it equals US $137. I agree that the city needs something like this due to the circumstances (and it will last three years at least), but again, the first method sounded better to me. The new one is a true annoyance. :spit:
  2. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    If they tried anything like that in the USA, there would be rioting in the streets.

  3. canopener


    Sep 15, 2003
    Isle of Lucy
    Without a doubt.
  4. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Can't you use a bike, or is that too far?
  5. Wow, hombre, that's crap. I suggest you move to Chile.

  6. A bicycle, moped or scooter is the fastest way around town, so maybe it might be a solution.
  7. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    A bicycle is an option and I'd use one, but the problem is that I don't have enough time for moving between my working places. I work in one university in the morning until 2:00 P.M. and start classes at that time in the other. Most of the times I have to warn my students at the beginning of the semester that the 2:00 P.M. class won't start at that time since I'm moving from one place to another, so I always start that class like 20 minutes later at least. It doesn't worries me too much because it's a 2-hour class, so we can work perfectly in a 1 hour plus 40 minutes session. With a bicycle, I think I'd arrive there one hour later at least (as an added minus, I'm so bad at sports).

    Another option would be a motorcycle (the measure applies only for personal use cars), but frankly, I think they're very dangerous. Besides, sometimes I carry my bass and I don't see myself with my instrument on a motorcycle.
  8. Didn't they do something like that back in the '70s during the gas crisis? But I think it was your last name or something. If you last name began with A-L, you could get gas during certain days, and if it began with M-Z, it was the other days.

    Or something like that. I was born in '83, so you old guys will have to clue me in.:D

    Rock on
  9. d8g3jdh

    d8g3jdh Guest

    Aug 9, 2005
    I'd like to see some sort of transit equation involving variables and imaginary numbers. THAT would be a pain.
  10. Ericman197


    Feb 23, 2004
    Even and odd days, something like that. It was a farce, of course; ALL of the even people got gas on one day and ALL of the odd people got gas on the other, so the lines were no shorter. If you were a doctor you could get gas on either day, and most likely police, ambulances and firefighters could as well.
  11. What happens to the people who get caught in the traffic jams who WERE driving during their allowed time,s but get caught in their disallowed time frames?
  12. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    "You must put your car into a parking place inmediately". :meh:
  13. That may be the single worst traffic control plan I've ever heard. I wish you luck in overcoming or circumventing this crap.
  14. Swap cars with somebody who has the same problem as you, but in a different time frame. If everybody cooperates, the effects of the scheme can be circumvented.
  15. That, gsys, is a clever solution to this problem, if it works.
  16. d8g3jdh

    d8g3jdh Guest

    Aug 9, 2005

    "If the last 2.7 digits of the cars license plate plus pi to the tenth digit are greater than or equal to the circumference of liberty island minus the total mass of 8 bouncy balls squared, then cars are allowed to drive a distance variable according to the closeness to the sun to the power of i, provided that they first have a mileage less than that of Queen Latifa's buttocks."

    Sounds a little complex to me. :meh:
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
  18. Now why did you have to go and bring Queen Latifa's buttocks into it? This thread was doing just fine.

    Rock on
  19. They tried something like this in Athens in the '70s to deal with air pollution, but what people ended up doing was buying another car with an odd-numbered license plate!

    Alvaro, I am surprised that your city is trying a clearly outdated method of traffic control like this. Congestion pricing using radio transponders, like what they do in London and Singapore and what is done on certain freeways in the United States, is a much better way of discouraging people from driving downtown. It's pretty simple: set tolls low at off-peak hours and high at peak hours. That encourages people to either drive in at different times (and thus avoid traffic) or simply not drive at all (and save gas and cut air pollution).

    I'm seriously leaning toward writing my PhD dissertation on political issues surrounding congestion pricing and automated road tolling, so I've gotten pretty familiar with it. 20 years from now, most major cities in the developed world are going to need to have some form of road pricing because gas tax revenues fall every time average fuel economy goes up.
  20. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    I was gonna say buy another license plate.

    Sucks indeed though. Hope you find a good solution to your problem.

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