badlatitude

China's Superfast Bullet Train Shows Just How Far Behind The U.S. is

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13 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

I agree with you, and I'm astounded by the number of people feeding into the negativity. TMSAIL picked the article with the largest cost projection while the Los Angeles Times is estimating a nearly 25% less expensive project. http://www.latimes.com/local/california/la-me-bullet-train-cost-increase-20180309-story.html

No it was the first article that came up.  Here is the cost projection from your link. Looks like you missed the high and only posted the low 

The price of the California bullet train project jumped sharply Friday when the state rail authority announced that the cost of connecting Los Angeles to San Francisco would be $77.3 billion and could rise as high as $98.1 billion — an uptick of at least $13 billion from estimates two years ago.

The rail authority also said the earliest trains could operate on a partial system between San Francisco and Bakersfield would be 2029 — four years later than the previous projection. The full system would not begin operating until 2033.

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1 minute ago, TMSAIL said:

No it was the first article that came up.  Here is the cost projection from your link. Looks like you missed the high and only posted the low 

The price of the California bullet train project jumped sharply Friday when the state rail authority announced that the cost of connecting Los Angeles to San Francisco would be $77.3 billion and could rise as high as $98.1 billion — an uptick of at least $13 billion from estimates two years ago.

The rail authority also said the earliest trains could operate on a partial system between San Francisco and Bakersfield would be 2029 — four years later than the previous projection. The full system would not begin operating until 2033.

Okay, so why cherry pick the high number when it is only an estimate? And the train opens the first section in just four years, albeit in the central valley where there is nothing but farmland.

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10 minutes ago, jerseyguy said:

My Texas friends like to say: " He would find something to bitch about if you hung him with a new rope." Seems to describe some of our right wing brethren and their elk quite well.

I put a link up from someone who supports high speed rail explaining why it would be a tough sell in the US.  NOT SURE HOW THAT IS BITCHING 

KEY POINTS

  • Population density or lack thereof
  • Our unique model of urban and suburban development
  • The strength of our property rights
  • Car culture, or America's lingering obsession with the automobile
  • The lasting power of network effects
  • An existing rail network is geared towards long-haul commercial freight traffic

 

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8 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

Okay, so why cherry pick the high number when it is only an estimate? And the train opens the first section in just four years, albeit in the central valley where there is nothing but farmland.

I didn’t cherry pick the number or the article.  I googled and found that story from a San Francisco source.  Use your numbers it’s still a huge expense for one line.   It has gone from 40 billion to 78 using the low in two years.    Knowing how cost overruns work it’s more likely going to go much higher by 2033 when it might be completed. 

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14 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

Okay, so why cherry pick the high number when it is only an estimate? And the train opens the first section in just four years, albeit in the central valley where there is nothing but farmland.

Opens when? Your link says they are already behind 4 years?

 

The rail authority also said the earliest trains could operate on a partial system between San Francisco and Bakersfield would be 2029 — four years later than the previous projection

 

Well here is one reason China can do it

The cost of environmental reviews jumped from a projected $388 million in 2010 to more than $1 billion

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2 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

I didn’t cherry pick the number or the article.  I googled and found that story from a San Francisco source.  Use your numbers it’s still a huge expense for one line.   It has gone from 40 billion to 78 using the low in two years.    Knowing how cost overruns work it’s more likely going to go much higher by 2033 when it might be completed. 

Cost overruns are a part of life, we had them for the Golden Gate Bridge, The Hoover Dam, for the Tennessee Valley Authority. If you want to Make America Great Again this is a necessary project. If we don't do something, population growth will.

Screen_20Shot_202015-01-22_20at_2012.52.

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2 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

Opens when? Your link says they are already behind 4 years?

 

The rail authority also said the earliest trains could operate on a partial system between San Francisco and Bakersfield would be 2029 — four years later than the previous projection

"It says 119 miles (192 kilometers) of track in the Central Valley is scheduled to open by 2022, which would make it the first operational segment. That's 14 years after voters approved a $10 billion bond for high-speed rail in November 2008."  https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/california/articles/2018-03-09/california-bullet-train-plan-to-show-updated-cost-timeline

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7 hours ago, Lark said:

Nice idea for the flatland.

Except power lines don't typically go where you want. Most power stations are outside the population center.

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4 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

Cost overruns are a part of life, we had them for the Golden Gate Bridge, The Hoover Dam, for the Tennessee Valley Authority. If you want to Make America Great Again this is a necessary project. If we don't do something, population growth will.

Screen_20Shot_202015-01-22_20at_2012.52.

Hey it’s your state, 

 

9 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

"It says 119 miles (192 kilometers) of track in the Central Valley is scheduled to open by 2022, which would make it the first operational segment. That's 14 years after voters approved a $10 billion bond for high-speed rail in November 2008."  https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/california/articles/2018-03-09/california-bullet-train-plan-to-show-updated-cost-timeline

Not exactly   They have to finish by then or potentially lose the federal funds 

One of the top priorities now, Kelly said, is to fulfill the state's obligations under $3.5 billion in grants that the Obama administration provided, which require that 119 miles of track be completed and all of the project's environmental clearances be obtained by 2022. The federal government could theoretically ask for its money back if those requirements are not met, officials close to the project say

 

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1 minute ago, TMSAIL said:

Hey it’s your state, 

 

Not exactly   They have to finish by then or potentially lose the federal funds 

One of the top priorities now, Kelly said, is to fulfill the state's obligations under $3.5 billion in grants that the Obama administration provided, which require that 119 miles of track be completed and all of the project's environmental clearances be obtained by 2022. The federal government could theoretically ask for its money back if those requirements are not met, officials close to the project say

 

It's merely an illustration of how difficult the process becomes the longer we wait.

 

They are committed to making that deadline.

 

 

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7 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

It's merely an illustration of how difficult the process becomes the longer we wait.

 

They are committed to making that deadline.

 

 

This is from the guy in charge.

How to pay for the entire project remains "uncertain," Kelly said. 

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1 minute ago, TMSAIL said:

This is from the guy in charge.

How to pay for the entire project remains "uncertain," Kelly said.

So? What project of this size has all the financing lined up?

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2 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

So? What project of this size has all the financing lined up?

They should.  Looks like the cost is working out to 140 million per mile. 

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1 minute ago, TMSAIL said:

They should.  Looks like the cost is working out to 140 million per mile. 

The biggest problem California faces are the mountains to the north of the city, a high-speed train cannot grab on an incline as a car would, meaning we would have to construct tunnels, which add the greatest cost to the project. Not much different from the challenge in the northeast corridor settling eminent domain claims.

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Just now, badlatitude said:

The biggest problem California faces are the mountains to the north of the city, a high-speed train cannot grab on an incline as a car would, meaning we would have to construct tunnels, which add the greatest cost to the project. Not much different from the challenge in the northeast corridor settling eminent domain claims.

Serious question.  What type of rider do they anticipate using it

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Down here in Texas they hate railroads. In fact, when they sing the University if Texas school song , “i’ve Been working on the railroad “ they change the words. 

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5 minutes ago, Gouvernail said:

Down here in Texas they hate railroads. In fact, when they sing the University if Texas school song , “i’ve Been working on the railroad “ they change the words. 

Too bad, Texas could really use high-speed rail.

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1 hour ago, Hillary said:

Except power lines don't typically go where you want. Most power stations are outside the population center.

Surprised.   Not much of a grid, just feed lines and a few cross connections,   

 

BE8A402A-61EB-4021-90DD-8BE601C8833C.gif

I’m impressed.

 

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3 times Seattle voted for an elevated monorail, and 3 times the self apppointed Guardians of the Seattle Galaxy scuttled it.  I think we have to face the fact that elevated high speed rail ain’t going to happen.  

On the other hand, an elevated/underground  medium speed rail made it through, without much democratic process.  

And so it goes.

Its nice, but that’s it.

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15 hours ago, Bus Driver said:

Interesting to see the comments regarding the way China can get it done. Loose regulations, cheap labor, authoritarian government. 

No wonder you guys support President Trump. 

careful , tad close to the bone .

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14 hours ago, Lark said:

I’m hoping we can catch up with India.

 

Pretty fancy. Are all the castes allowed aboard?

15 hours ago, badlatitude said:

So you use eminent domain to work around that. Eminent Domain is okay when used for the common good, not so good when used to build mcmansions and golf courses.

Where has that happened? I think it's not so good when used by a community development corporation to enhance tax revenue. Any thoughts on that issue?

14 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

I think part of the problem is determination of fair market price;

Another part is exactly when it's appropriate to determine a fair market price. I explained why over here.

10 hours ago, badlatitude said:

Too bad Trump hasn't lived up to his bluster, it would take a real bully to make it happen.

I called him the Crony in Chief in the first linked thread above. If he thought there was something in it for Donald Trump, he'd definitely bully people out of their land just like the New London Development Corp did and just like he's doing on the pipeline.

 

10 hours ago, Innocent Bystander said:

We don’t have the will to do it.  

And that's why Trump won't bully up on this one. We don't want it. We have cars and roads and airplanes and ships and passenger trains can't compete.

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3 hours ago, Uncooperative Tom said:

And that's why Trump won't bully up on this one. We don't want it. We have cars and roads and airplanes and ships and passenger trains can't compete.

China has been building some really cool stuff, no doubt about it.  But does it make financial sense?  In such an authoritative government, it is almost impossible to know.  In Xiamen, they have this really cool elevated bus line.  It is a 2 lane road elevated throughout the city that buses use.  That way, there is never any traffic to interfere with the buses.  It is pretty cool, but is it efficient?

If people really wanted high speed rail in the US, someone would provide it to them.  

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11 hours ago, SloopJonB said:

Curious that Japan - a country as densely populated everywhere as anywhere in the USA - manages to have them work very well.

People here don't seem to understand the concept they operate under - high speed between major population centers. They don't operate like old style "stop in every town" commuter rail.

Boston to NYC to DC would probably work very well

 

Depends on how the phrase ‘flyover country’ still rankles in Trumpistan.....

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I find the hardest part of 'mass transit' is always the first and last mile.  That's where the US system tends to break down and overlay models fail.

To get from my apartment to, say, the airport.  It's 14 miles direct.  or about 25 minutes in no traffic (2x that with traffic).  It's 19 miles by freeway (about the same time, 25 minutes no traffic, 2x with traffic).

It's about a 1/3rd of a mile walk to the bus stop, followed by a 6 mile ride on the bus, followed by a 6 or so mile ride on the train, followed by another 5 or so miles on another bus.  Total transit (assuming no traffic or delays ) is about 1 hour, 40 minutes.  Can you do it?  Sure.  But that lost time and aggravation adds up and becomes a non-starter pretty fast, particularly during rain or snow.

So the answer than becomes 'light rail' from city hub to city hub for business travelers?  The competition there is microjets.  http://www.hondajet.com/#6  The hondajet costs 5 mil and lands at regional airports.   

It's not that trains are a bad idea in general - particularly if you're starting green field or have cities already based around the concept of centralized distribution hubs.  But American cities aren't laid out that way.

Personally, if we're going the governmental route, I'd rather streamline and expand regional jets to accommodate generic commuter traffic and put more money into personalized "busing" concepts similar to Uber/Lyfts grouping models, applied to regional bus service.

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1 hour ago, jzk said:

China has been building some really cool stuff, no doubt about it.  But does it make financial sense?  In such an authoritative government, it is almost impossible to know.  In Xiamen, they have this really cool elevated bus line.  It is a 2 lane road elevated throughout the city that buses use.  That way, there is never any traffic to interfere with the buses.  It is pretty cool, but is it efficient?

If people really wanted high speed rail in the US, someone would provide it to them.  

Why would they? The wealthy fly around in private jets. They don't have the slightest need for high-speed rail, and the expense of acquiring the land make it very unlikely to be profitable.

-DSK

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1 minute ago, Steam Flyer said:

Why would they? The wealthy fly around in private jets. They don't have the slightest need for high-speed rail, and the expense of acquiring the land make it very unlikely to be profitable.

-DSK

Why would they?  Because they want a second private jet.  If high speed rail is worthy of doing, then it will be profitable.

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5 minutes ago, jzk said:

Why would they?  Because they want a second private jet.  If high speed rail is worthy of doing, then it will be profitable.

Really? You're always nattering about "capitalism." So, how does a transportation business make a profit if their capital costs (acquiring the land to put the train tracks on) are so high that NO amount of ticket income will cover it? If if the only way to make it profitable is to put the ticket price so high that nobody would pay it?

How do airlines price tickets to encourage high passenger utilization?

-DSK

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Just now, Steam Flyer said:

Really? You're always nattering about "capitalism." So, how does a transportation business make a profit if their capital costs (acquiring the land to put the train tracks on) are so high that NO amount of ticket income will cover it? If if the only way to make it profitable is to put the ticket price so high that nobody would pay it?

How do airlines price tickets to encourage high passenger utilization?

-DSK

Yes.  If the rail company can't make a profit, then the venture is not worth doing.  That is why we have no high speed rail in the US.  People would rather use that land for other purposes as indicated by the price that you cite.

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12 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

Why would they? The wealthy fly around in private jets. They don't have the slightest need for high-speed rail, and the expense of acquiring the land make it very unlikely to be profitable.

-DSK

This is true and, depending on your definition, it's not just "the wealthy" who fly around the US. We have civilian aviation in a way that no other country does and you can get a serviceable Cessna or Piper airplane for about the price of a nice 4ksb or a nice flats fishing boat. The military scattered runways all over FL, which is conveniently flat where they did not, so we have communities where people keep their airplanes at their house.

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Just now, jzk said:

Yes.  If the rail company can't make a profit, then the venture is not worth doing.  That is why we have no high speed rail in the US.  People would rather use that land for other purposes as indicated by the price that you cite.

 

In other words, your cheery & simple economics slogans state that the US must remain a second or third-tier state compared to China and India, much less France.

-DSK

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1 minute ago, Steam Flyer said:

 

In other words, your cheery & simple economics slogans state that the US must remain a second or third-tier state compared to China and India, much less France.

-DSK

Why does not having high speed rail make us a "second or third-tier" state?  We don't want it.  We have more efficient modes of transportation that we prefer.  

If you want it, assemble a group of investors and get it.  Why do you feel the need to force society to give you what you want, when it is clear that society doesn't want it?

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1 minute ago, Steam Flyer said:

 

In other words, your cheery & simple economics slogans state that the US must remain a second or third-tier state compared to China and India, much less France.

-DSK

Maybe it's just me, but I'd rather have a plane in my yard than a nearby train.

I like the fact that I could say Donald Trump looked like Winnie the Pooh if I wanted to and I like not being in a caste, so China and India don't have much appeal to me.

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3 minutes ago, Uncooperative Tom said:
7 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

 

In other words, your cheery & simple economics slogans state that the US must remain a second or third-tier state compared to China and India, much less France.

-DSK

Maybe it's just me, but I'd rather have a plane in my yard than a nearby train.

I like the fact that I could say Donald Trump looked like Winnie the Pooh if I wanted to and I like not being in a caste, so China and India don't have much appeal to me.

I prefer to not be in a caste, too. In fact, I refuse to be; which is why so many Republicans who want to turn US citizens into peasants find my views unappealing.

I have a lot of friends with planes, and a lot of friends near water. Buying a plane may be cheap, but it's even more time & maintenance intensive than boating; I'd much rather buy an inexpensive ticket to go to XYZ than have to fly myself to XYZ (assuming there's either a field or open water nearby); and also have the option of buying an inexpensive ticket to quickly and safely get to any place that DOESN'T have a field or open water.

The idea is not to be "like" India and China, but to point out that following backwards, stupid, economic ideas, make it inevitable that countries like China and India which used to be fly-blown shit holes not long ago, are now more advanced that the US.

-DSK

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5 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

 

In other words, your cheery & simple economics slogans state that the US must remain a second or third-tier state compared to China and India, much less France.

-DSK

No, you seem to be the only one saying that. 

The feds want to build HS rail here in Florida but the folks who live near the tracks aren't so sure.

The proposed multi-billion dollar run from Orlando to Tampa is already served by I4.  Folks along the way want to have stops (pretty much like interchanges).  Building it isn't like a cross china railway.  With or without stops you would inconvenience a few milllion people for a few years for a quicker trip that isn't usually necessary.  All those folks on Cruise ships in Tampa who want to take the tour to the theme parks would still have to ride a bus to and from the station and to the destination.  It's an hour and a half ride now, I don't know what you would save in time for the huge financial investment and social disruption.

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7 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

I prefer to not be in a caste, too. In fact, I refuse to be; which is why so many Republicans who want to turn US citizens into peasants find my views unappealing.

I have a lot of friends with planes, and a lot of friends near water. Buying a plane may be cheap, but it's even more time & maintenance intensive than boating; I'd much rather buy an inexpensive ticket to go to XYZ than have to fly myself to XYZ (assuming there's either a field or open water nearby); and also have the option of buying an inexpensive ticket to quickly and safely get to any place that DOESN'T have a field or open water.

The idea is not to be "like" India and China, but to point out that following backwards, stupid, economic ideas, make it inevitable that countries like China and India which used to be fly-blown shit holes not long ago, are now more advanced that the US.

-DSK

If you want a plane, get a plane.  If you want to ride the train, ride the train.  Do whatever you want.  If you want to be a peasant, be a peasant.  If you want to be rich, be rich.  It is all up to you.  I wont force my views on you if you promise not to force yours on me.

If there is demand for a bullet train, and that demand exceeds the costs, some one will build it.  One thing you might want to consider is removing the considerable government costs that you are imposing on such a venture.

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5 minutes ago, Saorsa said:
19 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

In other words, your cheery & simple economics slogans state that the US must remain a second or third-tier state compared to China and India, much less France.

-DSK

No, you seem to be the only one saying that. 

Hardly. But I'm flattered that you give me so much importance

The feds want to build HS rail here in Florida but the folks who live near the tracks aren't so sure.

The proposed multi-billion dollar run from Orlando to Tampa is already served by I4.  Folks along the way want to have stops (pretty much like interchanges).  Building it isn't like a cross china railway.  With or without stops you would inconvenience a few milllion people for a few years for a quicker trip that isn't usually necessary.  All those folks on Cruise ships in Tampa who want to take the tour to the theme parks would still have to ride a bus to and from the station and to the destination.  It's an hour and a half ride now, I don't know what you would save in time for the huge financial investment and social disruption.

 

Well, there you go. Trying to impose stupidity and vague social concepts on what should be first considered on the basis of numbers. Will hi-speed rail from point X to point Y be a net saving in time, energy, and money? If yes, -then- bring in the stuff about {music} FEE-ee-EELINGS {end music}

Hi-speed rail doesn't stop in every Podunk whistle stop. You wanna drive there, drive. We're not proposing to get rid of roads.

To me, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to put in a hi-speed rail line from Orlando to Tampa. They're too close together, and as you say, there are a lot of options for travel. But it could cut the time in half or a bit less, so the savings in people-hours would be large.

OTOH in JZK-world, such a line might be profitable because of the large number of tourists they can herd aboard; so you'd be fucked over, too bad so sad.

-DSK

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13 hours ago, SloopJonB said:

Curious that Japan - a country as densely populated everywhere as anywhere in the USA - manages to have them work very well.

People here don't seem to understand the concept they operate under - high speed between major population centers. They don't operate like old style "stop in every town" commuter rail.

Boston to NYC to DC would probably work very well

 

The Bos/Wash corridor is lumpy, curvy, crowded, and parts of it are in serious need of replacement. A perfect reason to fix all these problems, but perhaps not the best place to experiment....Washington to Miami maybe....

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Personal planes?    The congestion bad on the streets so instead of fixing it have the rich people use planes?   Or sell less rich people planes and revamp air traffic control to accommodate much more traffic?   Who pays for that?    Certified maintenance?  Inspections?  Paper trail on redundant parts, etc.    Clearly only a solution for the best people or a population density like Nebraska.   CMilliken was slightly more reasonable with commuter jets.    The problems:    Terrorism and homeland security(maybe this can be eliminated with hijack proof robot pilots),  air traffic control upgrades, airport delays, and especially environmental impact.   What will Arizona do as they face more days above 118 degrees and the commuter planes are grounded?  The linked Paris study showed cars had a carbon footprint of 151.6 g CO2/km when road construction and maintenance, car replacement and fuel was considered.   Air was 164g / km.   High speed rail was 11 g / km (LGV Mediterranée).

I am holding judgement on Elon Musk projects until I know more.   Scalability and operating expenses are unknown.  Rail can move the most people at he least cost per decade.  Like the Boston subway, it’s a public investment with a very long payout.  Robot cars or Uber Toyota’s will last for only a couple years of continuous operation, half a million miles if they don’t idle too much.   Locomotives are designed to operate 30 years or more, cars 40 years.  Track maintenance is minor once the thing is built.   The original Boston tunnels are still in use.    New York City shows even wih decades of massive neglect the system sort of runs.    The problem with railroad economics is the return on investment is terrible over 5 years but great over 50 and 100.   Americans are terrible planners.   Modern American Democracy is even worse.   We never would have built the transcontinental railroad, and would have a dozen gauges of train in use without government interference.   Why is it wrong to have government involvement continue?

 

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2 minutes ago, Lark said:

Personal planes?    The congestion bad on the streets so instead of fixing it have the rich people use planes?   Or sell less rich people planes and revamp air traffic control to accommodate much more traffic?   Who pays for that?    Certified maintenance?  Inspections?  Paper trail on redundant parts, etc.    Clearly only a solution for the best people or a population density like Nebraska.   CMilliken was slightly more reasonable with commuter jets.    The problems:    Terrorism and homeland security(maybe this can be eliminated with hijack proof robot pilots),  air traffic control upgrades, airport delays, and especially environmental impact.   What will Arizona do as they face more days above 118 degrees and the commuter planes are grounded?  The linked Paris study showed cars had a carbon footprint of 151.6 g CO2/km when road construction and maintenance, car replacement and fuel was considered.   Air was 164g / km.   High speed rail was 11 g / km (LGV Mediterranée).

I am holding judgement on Elon Musk projects until I know more.   Scalability and operating expenses are unknown.  Rail can move the most people at he least cost per decade.  Like the Boston subway, it’s a public investment with a very long payout.  Robot cars or Uber Toyota’s will last for only a couple years of continuous operation, half a million miles if they don’t idle too much.   Locomotives are designed to operate 30 years or more, cars 40 years.  Track maintenance is minor once the thing is built.   The original Boston tunnels are still in use.    New York City shows even wih decades of massive neglect the system sort of runs.    The problem with railroad economics is the return on investment is terrible over 5 years but great over 50 and 100.   Americans are terrible planners.   Modern American Democracy is even worse.   We never would have built the transcontinental railroad, and would have a dozen gauges of train in use without government interference.   Why is it wrong to have government involvement continue?

 

Government involvement in the Transcontinental railroad consisted primarily of land grants of right of way.  Not a great expense.  Land Grant colleges were another good thing.  The feds originally only put up the land and let the states take the initiative to build and operate the schools.  Nowadays they just send money.

Europe always looks so good but we never had a couple of nice world wars to clear a lot of the ROW.

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39 minutes ago, Saorsa said:

Government involvement in the Transcontinental railroad consisted primarily of land grants of right of way.  Not a great expense.  Land Grant colleges were another good thing.  The feds originally only put up the land and let the states take the initiative to build and operate the schools.  Nowadays they just send money.

Europe always looks so good but we never had a couple of nice world wars to clear a lot of the ROW.

The Lincoln commission designed the transcontinental railroad with a five foot gauge to match California rail, but the challenges of different gauges during the civil war convinced them to change to standard (4’8.5”) to match the east coast’s more common size.

http://trn.trains.com/railroads/abcs-of-railroading/2006/05/a-history-of-track-gauge

The act also provided financing with 6% 30 year bonds for the high risk high cost project.   I can’t imagine Republicans doing that today.   

The question of "internal improvements" was constantly before Congress in the 19th century: Should Congress assist in improving the country’s transportation system? One such improvement was the dream of constructing a railroad that would cross the entire country. In the 1850s Congress commissioned several topographical surveys across the West to determine the best route for a railroad, but private corporations were reluctant to undertake the task without Federal assistance. In 1862 Congress passed the Pacific Railway Act, which designated the 32nd parallel as the initial transcontinental route and gave huge grants of lands for rights-of-way. The act was an effort to aid in the construction of a railroad and telegraph line from the Missouri River to the Pacific Ocean and to secure the use of that line to the government.

https://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc.php?flash=false&doc=32

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1 hour ago, Mrleft8 said:

The Bos/Wash corridor is lumpy, curvy, crowded, and parts of it are in serious need of replacement. A perfect reason to fix all these problems, but perhaps not the best place to experiment....Washington to Miami maybe....

High speed rail needs new, dedicated, straight track. You don't go 200 on roadbeds from the 19th century

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15 hours ago, jerseyguy said:

My Texas friends like to say: " He would find something to bitch about if you hung him with a new rope."

:D

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20 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

I prefer to not be in a caste, too. In fact, I refuse to be; which is why so many Republicans who want to turn US citizens into peasants find my views unappealing.

I have a lot of friends with planes, and a lot of friends near water. Buying a plane may be cheap, but it's even more time & maintenance intensive than boating; I'd much rather buy an inexpensive ticket to go to XYZ than have to fly myself to XYZ (assuming there's either a field or open water nearby); and also have the option of buying an inexpensive ticket to quickly and safely get to any place that DOESN'T have a field or open water.

The idea is not to be "like" India and China, but to point out that following backwards, stupid, economic ideas, make it inevitable that countries like China and India which used to be fly-blown shit holes not long ago, are now more advanced that the US.

-DSK

You must know some really nasty Republicans. I don't know any who want to turn US citizens into peasants.

Having personal planes, cars and boats and having property rights make China an especially inapplicable example. Their people don't have the choice of private aviation at all and they don't have our network of highways and long dependence on cars.

But the really big thing they don't have is private property rights and a fifth amendment and eminent domain discussions like this one and this one.

"Just do it like China" would run into a bit of a problem because the government here can't just declare that they own a right of way and have that problem behind them immediately and at no cost.

So it can only happen if we want it and we just don't see the use, hence the lack of demand. I can't imagine how a high speed train could be at all useful in my life. Can't do without a car, though.

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2 hours ago, Uncooperative Tom said:

You must know some really nasty Republicans. I don't know any who want to turn US citizens into peasants.

...     ...     ...

No, we know the same ones.

The ones who think that poor & colored people shouldn't have safe healthy drinking water, or health care. Who think it's fine to throw away environmental regulations so their buddies can make more profit...... yeah it'll trickle down to you, sooner or later........

Meanwhile, back to high speed rail........

2 hours ago, Uncooperative Tom said:

.....   ...    ...

"Just do it like China" would run into a bit of a problem because the government here can't just declare that they own a right of way and have that problem behind them immediately and at no cost.

So it can only happen if we want it and we just don't see the use, hence the lack of demand. I can't imagine how a high speed train could be at all useful in my life. Can't do without a car, though.

For getting myself, family and friends, around the area, I can easily see a subscription service to robotic vehicles as much cheaper and less trouble than owning a car. A light truck OTOH is unlikely to be profitable to rent out as-needed, I will probably have to own one of those forever.

Most people travel, at least some. Many people travel quite a lot. Trains are a hell of a lot more efficient. Why should our socioeconomic system waste shitloads of money just because the money we'd save would not be finding it's way into the right pockets?

-DSK

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1 hour ago, Steam Flyer said:

No, we know the same ones.

The ones who think that poor & colored people shouldn't have safe healthy drinking water, or health care. Who think it's fine to throw away environmental regulations so their buddies can make more profit...... yeah it'll trickle down to you, sooner or later........

I don't know anyone like that. I do know some TeamR people who think TeamD wants to trap the poor in welfare dependency.

I think taking someone else's policy goals and assigning to them motivations matching what you think will happen, not what they intend, is just a foolish trick used by partisans. On both sides.

1 hour ago, Steam Flyer said:

For getting myself, family and friends, around the area, I can easily see a subscription service to robotic vehicles as much cheaper and less trouble than owning a car. A light truck OTOH is unlikely to be profitable to rent out as-needed, I will probably have to own one of those forever.

Most people travel, at least some. Many people travel quite a lot. Trains are a hell of a lot more efficient. Why should our socioeconomic system waste shitloads of money just because the money we'd save would not be finding it's way into the right pockets?

I can't wait for self-driving on-demand cars. But can't see anyone renting me a truck either.

The money we'd save is pretty hypothetical because of that little property rights problem. See RKoch's post in that thread I linked above about eminent domain claims for a roadway. It gets darn expensive and time consuming if you don't have a dictatorship like the Chinese do.

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2 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

No, we know the same ones.

The ones who think that poor & colored people shouldn't have safe healthy drinking water, or health care. Who think it's fine to throw away environmental regulations so their buddies can make more profit...... yeah it'll trickle down to you, sooner or later........

Meanwhile, back to high speed rail........

For getting myself, family and friends, around the area, I can easily see a subscription service to robotic vehicles as much cheaper and less trouble than owning a car. A light truck OTOH is unlikely to be profitable to rent out as-needed, I will probably have to own one of those forever.

Most people travel, at least some. Many people travel quite a lot. Trains are a hell of a lot more efficient. Why should our socioeconomic system waste shitloads of money just because the money we'd save would not be finding it's way into the right pockets?

-DSK

Cliche nonsense.  Who thinks that "colored" people shouldn't have health care?  If a "colored" person wants to hire the very best doctor in the world to treat their illness, who would oppose it?  Who would say that the "colored" person should not have the right to do business with that doctor?

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26 minutes ago, Uncooperative Tom said:

...     ...     ...

I think taking someone else's policy goals and assigning to them motivations matching what you think will happen, not what they intend, is just a foolish trick used by partisans. On both sides.

...     ...     ...

 

It's not "what -I- think," it's what the stated policy goals are. And history, generally if something has happened over and over and over, it's pretty clear that it is likely to happen again given the same circumstances. So, "removal of environmental regs" = "more pollution" is not necessarily universal but it's by far the most likely outcome.

So, partisan trick? No, unless you're talking about -your- use of rhetoric to attack my statement(s)

-DSK

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3 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

It's not "what -I- think," it's what the stated policy goals are.

Oh, sorry.

As I mentioned, I have never met one who stated that he thinks "that poor & colored people shouldn't have safe healthy drinking water, or health care."

Are these just people you've met or can you quote an elected one?

Those seem to me more like what you think will happen than what they actually want. Much like when some of them tell me that TeamD wants people dependent on welfare. What some partisan thinks will happen is not usually what his opponents actually intend.

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8 minutes ago, Uncooperative Tom said:

Oh, sorry.

As I mentioned, I have never met one who stated that he thinks "that poor & colored people shouldn't have safe healthy drinking water, or health care."

Are these just people you've met or can you quote an elected one?

Those seem to me more like what you think will happen than what they actually want. Much like when some of them tell me that TeamD wants people dependent on welfare. What some partisan thinks will happen is not usually what his opponents actually intend.

Ask the people of Flint Michigan, with good Republican office holders all the way up the ladder.

Hardly a figment of my imagination, and the same kind of drama has played out with less publicity in a lot of other places.... again, almost uniformly under Republican administration..... "hey we're saving the taxpayers money, here!"

-DSK

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You must know some really nasty Republicans. I don't know any who want to turn US citizens into peasants.

Maybe not deliberately but that is the net effect of the stupid, short sighted ignorance based policies they want to implement.

Corporate leaders don't want to eliminate their customer bases either but that is the long term effect of their race to the bottom in wages and benefits.

Greed is not good.

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4 minutes ago, SloopJonB said:
5 hours ago, Uncooperative Tom said:

You must know some really nasty Republicans. I don't know any who want to turn US citizens into peasants.

...    ...    ...    ...

 

Maybe not deliberately but that is the net effect of the stupid, short sighted ignorance based policies they want to implement.

Corporate leaders don't want to eliminate their customer bases either but that is the long term effect of their race to the bottom in wages and benefits.

Greed is not good.

 

Oh, in many cases it is quite deliberate. Cut money from public schools, those working class people don't need education. Get rid of worker protection laws, the workers are fricking expendable. Get rid of the laws about equal opportunity, us bosses are tired of listening to uppity unmoneyed people talking about how we hire only white people or make remarks about women employees tits (in between grabbing them).

Many Republicans are pretty disdainful of the whole idea of equal rights, equal opportunity, equality before the law, and the cultural ideal of egalitarianism. WTF is the point of being rich if you can't enjoy it by shitting on poor people?

The fact that it happens a lot makes no more impression on Tom than the fact that Republicans have banned guns. He may be sincere in thinking he's not a Team R cheerleader but he darn sure wears their blinders and waves their flag.

-DSK

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On 5/13/2018 at 1:43 AM, TMSAIL said:

That was my point worded in response to too many roads in place unless you are willing to cross or close  to hundreds of road crossings there are very few corridors.  Farm land sounds great until the farmer has no way to get across

Would need to be elevated or underground in those cases.  

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On 5/12/2018 at 2:16 PM, TMSAIL said:

You assume we want or need high speed rail in the US.  It is the difference between a state run economy and a free economy.  Commuter rail loses money in most every case.   

So do freeways

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25 minutes ago, Mickey Rat said:

Would need to be elevated or underground in those cases.  

Which adds astronomically to the cost.  The CA planned train from LA to SF has already gone from 40 Billion to 78 - 100 billion in 8 years.  Cost is almost 150 million per mile. It still has 15 years to go.   Light rail is fine to feed urban areas   Chicago has a great system to get people in and out of downtown from 50 miles in all directions.

The BART system in SF serves the same purpose as do others.    

When you are talking greater distances driving or flying is still the best option in the US and I believe will remain the best option for a long time.  

 

..

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5 minutes ago, Raz'r said:

So do freeways

We have a great toll way system  beautiful roads 4 lanes in every direction, open lane tolls Fully lighted at night.  Emergency service 24 hrs  Plowed quickly  No government subsidies at all.  You use it you pay for it.  Unlike rail which is funded through taxes regardless if  you use it or not

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3 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

We have a great toll way system  beautiful roads 4 lanes in every direction, open lane tolls Fully lighted at night.  Emergency service 24 hrs  Plowed quickly  No government subsidies at all.  You use it you pay for it.  Unlike rail which is funded through taxes regardless if  you use it or not

ahh so as part of your uber-transformation of the public system, you want to privatize all roads?

the freeways suck up a tremendous amount of public resource. Saying they don't is disingenuous. But not surprising from the Right.

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44 minutes ago, Mickey Rat said:

Would need to be elevated or underground in those cases.  

A lot of the French TGV seems to run in trenches or cuts.

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1 hour ago, Raz'r said:

So do freeways

Aren't those the roads you need to get to the train station?

Or, away from it?

 

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1 hour ago, TMSAIL said:

Which adds astronomically to the cost.  The CA planned train from LA to SF has already gone from 40 Billion to 78 - 100 billion in 8 years.  Cost is almost 150 million per mile. It still has 15 years to go.   Light rail is fine to feed urban areas   Chicago has a great system to get people in and out of downtown from 50 miles in all directions.

The BART system in SF serves the same purpose as do others.    

When you are talking greater distances driving or flying is still the best option in the US and I believe will remain the best option for a long time.  

 

..

Actually, the train beats flying or driving quite often for 200 mile trips, if you factor in the airport hassle or traffic jams.  New York to DC, Seattle to Portland, NY to Boston, for instance.  

High-speed trains make a lot of sense.  Except to those who like their subsidies buried in less visible ways.  The Interstate system, for instance was pushed through as a national defense measure.

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5 minutes ago, Left Shift said:

High-speed trains make a lot of sense.  Except to those who like their subsidies buried in less visible ways.  The Interstate system, for instance was pushed through as a national defense measure.

That wasn't a bit of fakery - Ike did it because of his pre-war experiences trying to move a military convoy across the country. I think that getting the network built for defense reasons was one of the main reasons why he ran for POTUS.

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12 minutes ago, SloopJonB said:

That wasn't a bit of fakery - Ike did it because of his pre-war experiences trying to move a military convoy across the country. I think that getting the network built for defense reasons was one of the main reasons why he ran for POTUS.

Totally agree it wasn't hidden at the time, but it certainly has been conveniently forgotten by all those who object to mass transit subsidies.  Just like trucking companies griping about road taxes, when their entire livelihood is based on those roads.  

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3 hours ago, TMSAIL said:

We have a great toll way system  beautiful roads 4 lanes in every direction, open lane tolls Fully lighted at night.  Emergency service 24 hrs  Plowed quickly  No government subsidies at all.  You use it you pay for it.  Unlike rail which is funded through taxes regardless if  you use it or not

In my neck of the woods the freeways are built, paid for, then spun off to a toll company which takes over maintenance and profit.    They are not started as a private venture, its just a means to privatize state revenue.

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2 hours ago, Left Shift said:

Actually, the train beats flying or driving quite often for 200 mile trips, if you factor in the airport hassle or traffic jams.  New York to DC, Seattle to Portland, NY to Boston, for instance.  

High-speed trains make a lot of sense.  Except to those who like their subsidies buried in less visible ways.  The Interstate system, for instance was pushed through as a national defense measure.

Of course It was a national defense measure,  with huge civilian benefits.  Also built to state of the art standards for the 50’s 

As to trains being better, hard to know what security will be like on a high profile bullet train. If it’s business I might take a train 200 miles assuming I have a way to reach my final stop.  Personal or a family trip way more economical to drive.   

 

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27 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

Of course It was a national defense measure,  with huge civilian benefits.  Also built to state of the art standards for the 50’s 

As to trains being better, hard to know what security will be like on a high profile bullet train. If it’s business I might take a train 200 miles assuming I have a way to reach my final stop.  Personal or a family trip way more economical to drive.   

 

I think you will find in Portland, Seattle, DC, NYC and Boston that the locals have collectively come together to provide you with quite a choice of ways to get to your final stop.  All of which are subsidized in one way or another.  (May not be true in Houston)

 

 

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Riddle me this.  

The US built a railroad from coast to coast in the 1860’s with a civil war going on for part and manual labor in about 8 years   Yet it will take CA  with modern machinery, tech and Enginering over twice as long to go roughly 1/6 the distance. Thoughts?

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9 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

Riddle me this.  

The US built a railroad from coast to coast in the 1860’s with a civil war going on for part and manual labor in about 8 years   Yet it will take CA  with modern machinery, tech and Enginering over twice as long to go roughly 1/6 the distance. Thoughts?

The twin towers broke ground Aug 5 1966, he first tenants moved into the North Tower on December 15, 1970

Less than 4 1/2 years

APRIL 27, 2006 Ground was broken for construction of 1 World Trade Center 

NOVEMBER 3, 2014 One World Trade Center Officially Opens

It seems to be a pattern

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11 minutes ago, Nailing Malarkey Too said:

The twin towers broke ground Aug 5 1966, he first tenants moved into the North Tower on December 15, 1970

Less than 4 1/2 years

APRIL 27, 2006 Ground was broken for construction of 1 World Trade Center 

NOVEMBER 3, 2014 One World Trade Center Officially Opens

It seems to be a pattern

what pattern is that? and whom is to blame? please share your wisdom

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1 hour ago, TMSAIL said:

Of course It was a national defense measure,  with huge civilian benefits.  Also built to state of the art standards for the 50’s 

As to trains being better, hard to know what security will be like on a high profile bullet train. If it’s business I might take a train 200 miles assuming I have a way to reach my final stop.  Personal or a family trip way more economical to drive.   

 

Really depends on where specifically you are going. If I’m headed to Long Island (1:15 drive to Amtrak,  transfer to the LIRR at NYPenn after a 3 hour run for another 1:20 , rent a car out in Ronkonkama while I’m there and then reverse, I’ll drive or fly as it’s right at the cost convenience cutoff.  

If i’m headed to Manhattan alone, where it’s $50 per night for parking?  Amtrak plus the subway, Uber or taxis. Two for a  trip?  Amtrak is still better. 3 or more?  Rent a one way car each way and try to avoid the worst of the traffic. 

You don’t have to have a car in the cities Left Shift calls out. If you are going outside the immediate metro area, rent one when you need it. 

Driving isn’t as economical it might seem and in some places, having a car is a downright expensive PIA. 

For some routes, high speed trains make sense if we can stomach the build costs. The slow NE Regional is often full. Make it 1:30 instead of 3:00 at an affordable price and it becomes the preferred method of travel for a lot of folks. 

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33 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

Riddle me this.  

The US built a railroad from coast to coast in the 1860’s with a civil war going on for part and manual labor in about 8 years   Yet it will take CA  with modern machinery, tech and Enginering over twice as long to go roughly 1/6 the distance. Thoughts?

Must be the unions.

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3 minutes ago, aA said:

what pattern is that? and whom is to blame? please share your wisdom

With HS railroads it’s cost overruns EPA studies plans unions right of way and tech issues 

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1 minute ago, TMSAIL said:

With HS railroads it’s cost overruns EPA studies plans unions right of way and tech issues 

so if i read that right... #1 the contractor, #2 the government, #3 the unions, #4 eminent domain, #5 the tech industry. very interesting if i'm reading you correctly

 

of course that's also civil work (infrastructure) you're speaking to, not a commercial building that malarkey used in his analogy

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Innocent Bystander said:

Really depends on where specifically you are going. If I’m headed to Long Island (1:15 drive to Amtrak,  transfer to the LIRR at NYPenn after a 3 hour run for another 1:20 , rent a car out in Ronkonkama while I’m there and then reverse, I’ll drive or fly as it’s right at the cost convenience cutoff.  

If i’m headed to Manhattan alone, where it’s $50 per night for parking?  Amtrak plus the subway, Uber or taxis. Two for a  trip?  Amtrak is still better. 3 or more?  Rent a one way car each way and try to avoid the worst of the traffic. 

You don’t have to have a car in the cities Left Shift calls out. If you are going outside the immediate metro area, rent one when you need it. 

Driving isn’t as economical it might seem and in some places, having a car is a downright expensive PIA. 

For some routes, high speed trains make sense if we can stomach the build costs. The slow NE Regional is often full. Make it 1:30 instead of 3:00 at an affordable price and it becomes the preferred method of travel for a lot of folks. 

I agree with most of that.  I used Chicago’s light rail as an example.  A bullet train NY to Chicago Ohare would link up with light rail.  One of the routes was Chicago to St. Louis   Who would travel back and forth to make it worth it?   Very few.  

 

It sounds like just getting a route locked in with RoR could take a decade or longer.  Who knows what tech might be available in 25/ 30 years 

 

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1 minute ago, aA said:

so if i read that right... #1 the contractor, #2 the government, #3 the unions, #4 eminent domain, #5 the tech industry. very interesting if i'm reading you correctly

 

of course that's also civil work (infrastructure) you're speaking to, not a commercial building that malarkey used in his analogy

 

 

I’m basing a lot of that on the CA Bullet train LA to SF.  BL provides a study. 

1 billion in environmental studies alone 

Cost  over runs of 38 - 60 billion before they even make serious progress.  They are worried about completing a short stretch in flat fields and could loose fed funds. 

Unions collective bargaining will come into play several times during a project this long. 

Tech will change over a decade.  Do you modify with larger costs and delays for higher tech or build an outmoded train. 

I cannot imagine the nightmare of seizing land in the east coast corridors. 

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34 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

I’m basing a lot of that on the CA Bullet train LA to SF.  BL provides a study. 

1 billion in environmental studies alone 

Cost  over runs of 38 - 60 billion before they even make serious progress.  They are worried about completing a short stretch in flat fields and could loose fed funds. 

Unions collective bargaining will come into play several times during a project this long. 

Tech will change over a decade.  Do you modify with larger costs and delays for higher tech or build an outmoded train. 

I cannot imagine the nightmare of seizing land in the east coast corridors. 

I’m no fan of the Ca bullet train. It’s 50 year old tech. We could do a lot better for a lot cheaper. I think that’s kinda the point of why China is eating our lunch. A train becomes a way to spread money across competing interest groups, rather than a way to move people efficiently. 

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21 minutes ago, Raz'r said:

I’m no fan of the Ca bullet train. It’s 50 year old tech. We could do a lot better for a lot cheaper. I think that’s kinda the point of why China is eating our lunch. A train becomes a way to spread money across competing interest groups, rather than a way to move people efficiently. 

Better yes cheaper.  Not so sure tunnels through mountains are expensive regardless of the tracks and trains running through it.   

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1 minute ago, TMSAIL said:

Better yes cheaper.  Not so sure tunnels through mountains are expensive regardless of the tracks and trains running through it.   

Maybe.

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45 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

I’m basing a lot of that on the CA Bullet train LA to SF.  BL provides a study. 

1 billion in environmental studies alone 

Cost  over runs of 38 - 60 billion before they even make serious progress.  They are worried about completing a short stretch in flat fields and could loose fed funds. 

Unions collective bargaining will come into play several times during a project this long. 

Tech will change over a decade.  Do you modify with larger costs and delays for higher tech or build an outmoded train. 

I cannot imagine the nightmare of seizing land in the east coast corridors. 

Isn't the final cost closer to 100 billion. 

The sales pitch for the train said it will take you between LA and San Fran in 3 hours for $90 vs 90 minutes and $140 by air.

Well I just checked Kayak and one way with same day purchase on united is $51. 

 

image.thumb.png.ce85fa4782c9f1faa35271c88bd20c59.png

Their ridership estimates are between 33 and 71 million per year. The working estimate is 54 million with 31.6 million between LA and the Bay area

100 billion dollars invested in a mutual fund should generate 5% return as a minimum over many years. That is 5 billion per year in just the cost of the money

That is $135 per trip before the operating cost are included. 

Nor fair you say. Bond rates are lower than that. Well a 1.5% bond over 30 year maturity that is 4.141 billion/yr so it isn't much better

What isn't clear to me is if the 97 billion included the financing charges during the 15 or so years of construction

In any case the money would have been better spent on local rapid transit that links to the major airports. That would serve the local communities and link the city's quickly. 

One last thought. 54 million Riders? (the projection if train fare is 50% of air)  Ahhhhh ha ha ha ha hahahahahahahhah  not.

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22 minutes ago, TMSAIL said:

Better yes cheaper.  Not so sure tunnels through mountains are expensive regardless of the tracks and trains running through it.   

I read the tunnels were 20-40 billion estimated 

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