The Disneyland effect is a term that has come up several times since light rail began running in the Phoenix area. The first few months of light rail ridership in 2009 was ‘higher than expected” and many people attributed that to the “Disneyland effect.” Light rail was something new, something to try out once or twice, but it surely wouldn’t sustain large ridership numbers like that. Curiosity, newness and first time riders would surely not keep coming back to ride this thing, right?
The Disney term has also been floated around with the upcoming “Sky Train” project at Sky Harbor Airport. In a meeting last year with a bunch of transportation geeks, I heard one of the main speakers say that approximately 1000 people a day will ride the Sky Train just for fun. Heck, it’s going to be an elevated train ride, who won’t enjoy that, right? My kids love to ride the light rail, I’m pretty sure they won’t balk if I ask them if they want to take the light rail to a Sky Train. I guarantee, the name alone will piqué their interest enough for them to say YES…
As we learn more about the design of the Sky Train, it continues to sound pretty cool. Cool, as in kind of a fun way to get to Sky Harbor Airport from light rail; cool, as in a “fun” elevated train ride; cool, as in “airport officials also made sure the air conditioning system was powerful enough to maintain 72 degree interior temperature during triple-digit summer temperatures”.
Many people have been using the current shuttle service to Sky Harbor via the light rail system, but those numbers should continue to increase dramatically once it is more convenient and “cool.”
All together now…. M. I. C. – K. E. Y…
Kristal Kraft says
You are so right, there will always be Grandparents and the like taking their kids for a fun ride. It’s not quite the same as going to Disneyland, but the effect and the memory will remain.
We really have to keep building this transportation BEFORE it is needed, so keep plowing ahead planners and ignore those who don’t agree.
.-= Kristal Kraft´s last blog ..Forbes Deletes Denver Dissing Article =-.
Solana Del says
Curiosity and amusement are perfectly fine reasons for experiencing something for the first time. Then the quality of the service has to be high to bring people back for subsequent rides. I think the light rail is a great thing for Phoenix. There’s a big need to thin out the traffic that has built up on the highways there, and people are doing the environmentally correct thing by riding the rail.