More What-Might-Have-Beens

I love the alternate history game. And as it turns out, several US cities were in contention for the Olympics this year, and so alternative visions of a Games that never were have abounded. New York is an interesting example, where in the end, some several billions of dollars worth of the proposed venues and other improvements were built anyways.

But did you know there also might have been a DC 2012? It’s true! Apparently, it would have been more of a regional bid than anything, with venues stretching from Baltimore to Annapolis to West Virginia. But could it have been done?

Of course the DC 2012 planners thought so. But as the past decade has shown, it would almost certainly have been an unmitigated disaster. Reason #3 why DC “was qualified” to handle the Olympic games?

Mass Transit To Handle The Crowds 
The Olympic and Paralympic Games are about moving thousands of people with ease and comfort. We are blessed with a mass transit system that allows us to say with confidence today that this will be a breeze. From Washington, DC’s acclaimed, accessible METRO system, to Baltimore’s Light Rail we have the resources to move the expected visitors, athletes, and officials sure to be here in the summer of 2012. Our area has over 450 miles of rail line to move passengers and we expect to call heavily on the resources of not only METRO and Baltimore’s Light Rail, but also on the MARC, VRE , and Amtrak systems. We’ll also press in to service the thousands of busses that regularly move commuters and tour groups throughout our region.

Oh, fine then, totally. Can’t imagine any breakdowns ever of this wonderful, well-networked transit system. Also – where is all this “acclaim” and “belovedness” I hear about so often? I’m pretty nostalgic for the past myself, but that particular chapter of history seems lost…

Visions of a present that could have been are nice. But about as outlandish as I can picture is a week without offloads or headways longer than 8 minutes. That would be a truly great accomplishment.

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