Portland's light rail lines have long been derided as Crime Trains, due to the propensity of gang-bangers and other criminals to hop aboard; an interactive map published online by The Oregonian prior to the construction of the Interstate line and the line to Clackamas Town Center clearly illustrated the concentration of crime within a three block radius of the two existing lines. And Clackamas County Sheriff's office reported a 38% increase in crime after the Town Center line opened.
“I saw a guy getting ready to get off but he looked as if he spotted me and decided not to get off the train.”
The man in a blue shirt with a grill or braces followed her to the back of the train.
“He was basically trying to shoot the breeze and trying to get a hookup.”
When Deborah shot him down, the thief decided he wasn’t leaving empty-handed.
“He grabbed my phone and just pulled it. I was trying to hold onto it. I said, oh my God, I’m not letting this phone go. He yanked it so hard that it literally pulled me out of the chair.”
Well, it's important to get people out of their cars and onto trains, you know. Among politicians and planners, the herding instinct takes precedence over safety.
Oddly, there doesn't seem to be a lot of that going on in places like Eugene, Oregon, and other areas that have been implementing bus rapid transit (BRT) systems. Eugene's getting set to begin construction next month on a 9-mile third extension of BRT, and it's only going to cost $92 million - dirt cheap compared to the costs of running light rail lines around Portland.