Leo Sullivan wrote:Everyone in this thread is forgetting that if you look up 'Light Rail' from 80 years ago, you will find that it means a small locomotive and train, probably narrow gauge, on a roadside line with no amenities and, in Britain, one of the places they had 'light rail' the speed was legally limited to 25mph. In other words, "Light Rail' means what the promoters say it means.
Actually, there is a late 1990's FRA Rule in the Federal Register
( proposed at that time) which has a very succinct identification of the term "Light Rail" and what it means. Essentially the FRA notes that the terms Light and Heavy Rail are those used by the Federal Transit Administration to describe the two basic forms of "Urban Rapid Transit". It is mentioned in the FRA Rule to indicate that, generally, these types of railways are not subject to FRA regulation. As desribed in that report, Heavy Rail defines what we think of as Subway and Subway-Elevated lines, completely separated from vehicular traffic, with high level platforms, etc. Light Rail is described as lines which will share ROW with Vehicular traffic, have ground level loading, etc.---- So the use of the term "Light Rail" as it is being used in this thread in right in line with the definitions in that FRA proposed rule.