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High Speed Rail initiative


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#1 Happy Panther

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 08:56 AM

The Obama administration is proposing to spend $53 billion over the next six years to help promote the construction of a national high-speed, intercity passenger rail network, Vice President Joe Biden announced Tuesday.

President Barack Obama said in last month's State of the Union address that he was setting a goal of giving 80 percent of Americans access to high-speed rail within 25 years.


http://www.cnn.com/2...dex.html?hpt=T1

What a joke. I can tell you what $53B (shall we assume $75B with overruns) will get you...

High speed rail between a few select cities...

That will be prohibitively expensive compared to driving or flying...

That will be in receivership by the government...

That will be used by nobody.

If you have spent much time in Europe, high speed rail works ok. Downtown London to downtown Paris is nice on the train. But still prohibitively expensive.

In the US our cities are too spread out meaning it will be no more convenient to drive to Charlotte Douglas than it will be to drive to Billy Graham train station.

In the US we have a great interstate system. And flying is still cheap

Ain't gonna work.

#2 Jangler

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:01 AM

Back to the past...

Amtrak continues to lose money and collect subsidies from the government to keep running.


Next: Triple Decker Buses.

#3 Darth Biscuit

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:07 AM

I know a little about this as we are (hopefully) going to be doing some work in the southeast on this thing... I don't know if the economics of it are feasible or not, but it will pour money into the private sector engineering economy. From my understanding the route they are looking at is ATL to Charlotte to Richmond to DC to Connecticut area...

#4 Delhommey

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:29 AM

Cheapest one way ticket from London to Paris on a plane (3/9/11): $93
Cheapest one way ticket from London to Paris on a high speed train (3/9/11): $67
Proving yet another Tinderbox poster is talking out his ass about Europe in about 3 mouse clicks: worthless but fun anyway.

#5 Carolina Husker

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:34 AM

But isn't that assuming the infrastructure is already in place? Isn't that the rub here?

#6 Happy Panther

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:45 AM

Cheapest one way ticket from London to Paris on a plane (3/9/11): $93
Cheapest one way ticket from London to Paris on a high speed train (3/9/11): $67
Proving yet another Tinderbox poster is talking out his ass about Europe in about 3 mouse clicks: worthless but fun anyway.


First of all they don't use dollars in England

I have ridden the chunnel recently and it was nearly $200 all in. Yes you may be able to find cheaper at certain times but it isn't cheap generally.

Proving yet another Tinderbox poster is talking out his ass about Europe in about 3 mouse clicks

#7 Happy Panther

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:48 AM

I know a little about this as we are (hopefully) going to be doing some work in the southeast on this thing... I don't know if the economics of it are feasible or not, but it will pour money into the private sector engineering economy. From my understanding the route they are looking at is ATL to Charlotte to Richmond to DC to Connecticut area...


The high speed train is fun and I would certainly consider it. But I-85 is easy to navigate.

I would still have to park somewhere, go through security etc.

I bet its like flying to ATL where it isn't that much quicker than driving.

#8 Darth Biscuit

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:54 AM

Yeah, I think it's something that should be looked into, but the problem with the US and rail is that the country is so damn big. It would be such a huge infrastructure investment to do something on a scale that would be beneficial to people it probably won't be economically feasible in the long run.

#9 Happy Panther

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:57 AM

Yeah, I think it's something that should be looked into, but the problem with the US and rail is that the country is so damn big. It would be such a huge infrastructure investment to do something on a scale that would be beneficial to people it probably won't be economically feasible in the long run.


Right.

I would love to know what the expected cost of a train ride from CLT to ATL would be

#10 Jase

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:00 AM

Normally I'm against this sort of thing, but I have a soft spot for spending on transportation infrastructure.

#11 pstall

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:03 AM

its a boon to workers and cough, unions and chamber of commerce types.

is it practical? early on maybe not, but in time, with the rising cost of fuel, there could be a benefit. but my sense is this is simply scratching somebodies back.

#12 Darth Biscuit

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:05 AM

Right.

I would love to know what the expected cost of a train ride from CLT to ATL would be


It will fail miserably if the pricing can't compete with airfare.

#13 googoodan

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:11 AM

http://www.cnn.com/2...dex.html?hpt=T1

What a joke. I can tell you what $53B (shall we assume $75B with overruns) will get you...

High speed rail between a few select cities...

That will be prohibitively expensive compared to driving or flying...

That will be in receivership by the government...

That will be used by nobody.

If you have spent much time in Europe, high speed rail works ok. Downtown London to downtown Paris is nice on the train. But still prohibitively expensive.

In the US our cities are too spread out meaning it will be no more convenient to drive to Charlotte Douglas than it will be to drive to Billy Graham train station.

In the US we have a great interstate system. And flying is still cheap

Ain't gonna work.


True, but take North Carolina for instance. Most of our highways go north-south for some reason. There is no interstate that connects our largest city with the beach or with our capital city. Fayetteville is less than 100 miles from Charlotte, straight line distance. Try traveling from one to the other in less than 2.5 hours.
High speed rail from Charlotte to Raleigh would work. Charlotte to Atlanta would not.

#14 Carolina Husker

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:19 AM

There is definitely an interstate that connects out largest city (Charlotte) with the capital (Raleigh).

It's not a straight shot there because of the Uwharrie Mountains.

#15 googoodan

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:29 AM

85 will get you close to Raleigh. 40 does not connect to Charlotte.
I see what you mean, but have you ever driven through Idaho or Montana? All mountains and almost all national forests. I think just connecting Charlotte and Sanford would do wonders.


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