You're right. "Building it properly" is a vague term. I'll try again.Curious what people would define as 'building it properly'? Based on the information shared by the City of Calgary it is no longer technically feasible to build a tunnel under the river as the cut and cover method required through the downtown core means the Eau Claire station won't be built at a sufficient depth to permit tunneling under the river. So regardless of whether or not the northern segment to 16th is built now or 20 years from now we are going to be stuck with a bridge.
The Council approved plan originally had the line surfacing at 21st Ave N and there's been no talk of that ever really changing. So knowing those two constraints (a bridge is required over the Bow River and the train will run on the surface starting at 21st Ave N) what does everyone's ideal Green Line plan look like for the missing middle and what aspects of that plan makes it worth the delay by not building to 16th Ave now using the City of Calgary's latest proposal?
I'd like to see the LRT system avoid conflicts with key at-grade crossings. These crossing would see a high number of daily vehicle and pedestrian volume. Ideally key intersections would be grade separated.
A bad example of an at grade crossing is at 162nd Ave:
The 32nd Ave crossing:
North Line in Edmonton:
Even though the LRT has priority at these intersections, I believe the LRT has to travel at a slower speed at these crossings. Also, vehicle and pedestrian movements are impeded. I'm not against cost saving measures, but every at-grade crossing is a point of failure in the system. I'm not against surface LRT on Centre street, but the city has to take their time and design it so that it integrates well with the streetscape. The fact that they proposed a surface crossing at 16th Ave has me extremely worried.