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Old November 13th, 2005, 01:43 AM   #1
mongozx
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A Tunnel From Inland Empire to OC???

A rather fascinating idea! I'd say go for it!

By GILLIAN FLACCUS, Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 21 minutes ago



ALISO VIEJO, Calif. - Traffic is so bad along the eastern rim of Los Angeles' suburban ring that regional planners are considering the once unthinkable — an 11-mile tunnel through a mountain range in earthquake country.

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Critics question the logic of building a multibillion-dollar project in a region so prone to earthquakes that an alternate proposal for a double-decker highway was deemed too dangerous. The tunnel would begin barely a mile from a fault that produced a 6.0-magnitude earthquake about a century ago.

"It's absolutely absurd to have a tunnel 700 feet below ground in earthquake country," said Cathryn DeYoung, mayor of Laguna Niguel and a vocal opponent. "I mean, would you want to be in that tunnel?"

Planners are due to make a decision in mid November on whether to pursue the project.

The proposal for what would be the world's second-longest road tunnel would create a new path between sprawling inland suburbs and Orange County, which has become one of Southern California's fastest-growing job centers.

Such a project could cost up to $9 billion and take 25 years.

Transportation officials insist something drastic must be done to deal with the crippling traffic congestion between Orange and Riverside counties, which are separated by the 25-mile-long Santa Ana Mountains. Nearly 400,000 people commute into Orange County daily from four surrounding counties and nearly all of them drive.

California Highway 91, the only major road connecting Riverside County, where homes are more affordable, to jobs-rich northern Orange County carries 268,000 cars a day, nearly 50,000 more than it was built to handle. Officials expect that to increase over the next 25 years to nearly a half-million cars per day.

Howard Gottesman, 44, can spend 1 1/2 hours on Highway 91 to travel just six miles from his job as a property manager in Orange County to his home in Corona, just inside Riverside County.

"I call it the longest six miles in the world. It's wear and tear on the car and it's wear and tear on me," said Gottesman. "They need to do something, whether it's double-decking the freeway or tunneling under the mountains. We need relief."

Planners for Orange and Riverside counties have spent the past 18 months and $15 million in federal funds studying the issue. A committee of local and regional officials is expected to choose elements from three main alternatives by Nov. 18. Two of those alternatives include a version of the tunnel. Selecting a tunnel option would trigger years more of studies.

As currently conceived, the four- or six-lane tunnel would make up more than two-thirds of a 15-mile corridor connecting Interstate 15 with two toll roads in central Orange County.

The tunnel would rank second in length to Norway's 15-mile Laerdal Tunnel, which opened in 2000, said Michael Litschi, spokesman for the Orange County Transportation Authority. There are longer railroad tunnels, including the 33.5-mile Seikan Tunnel in Japan and the 31.3-mile Channel Tunnel linking England and France.

Litschi said engineers were waiting to see if the committee chooses the tunnel option before doing more studies on the Lake Elsinore fault system, but acknowledged that seismic activity is a "major concern."

Local officials have worked closely with a British engineering company that has helped build some of the largest tunnels in the world and has concluded that the tunnel is "viable and feasible," said H. Tony Rahimian, a consultant who helped devise the tunnel proposal.

"A tunnel is actually a very safe place. We don't want to run it through the faults and we're going to avoid that," he said.

Many critics say a tunnel will never suffice and suggest more mass transit.

"Every study shows that you can't build your way out of congestion," said Karl Warkomski, mayor of Aliso Viejo, in southern Orange County. "Eventually, you're going to get a point where you're back to square one — where we are now, or even worse."
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Old November 13th, 2005, 02:52 AM   #2
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yeah.. i heard this a while ago, isnt it like one of like 3 plans?? it would be pretty cool though
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Old November 13th, 2005, 04:36 AM   #3
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Intersting, but kind of risky, since you would be tunneling right above major fault lines.
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for the Pelasgians, too, were a Greek nation originally from the Peloponnesus
The Roman Antiquities of Dionysius of Halicarnassus
http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/...assus/1B*.html

Macedonia, of course, is a part of Greece". Strabo, VII, Frg. 9
http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/...ragments*.html

But north of the gulf, the first inhabitants are Greeks called Epirotes....
Procopius
http://books.google.com/books?id=9m6...page&q&f=false
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Old November 13th, 2005, 05:10 AM   #4
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wouldnt it be like easier, cheaper and faster-to-build to build like more mass transit, like i know we have metrolink but metrolink only has a couple of stops, it costs like 15 dollars and stuff, why not just make rail more accesible and cheaper?
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Old November 13th, 2005, 05:25 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PotatoGuy
wouldnt it be like easier, cheaper and faster-to-build to build like more mass transit, like i know we have metrolink but metrolink only has a couple of stops, it costs like 15 dollars and stuff, why not just make rail more accesible and cheaper?
Because most of America (especially suburban) is a car oriented nation. L.A. is the poster child for this. I will say that they have made large strides in it's central city mass transit system, making it the 3rd largest in the U.S. after NYC, and Chicago. I read that daily ridership on the Metrolink is only 32000. Not to say that Chicago's mass tranist is perfect, because it's far from it, our suburban commuter rail Metra, carries 320,000 passengers daily.

In the end, I don't see this tunnel project coming to light (hahah). It will be extremely expensive.
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for the Pelasgians, too, were a Greek nation originally from the Peloponnesus
The Roman Antiquities of Dionysius of Halicarnassus
http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/...assus/1B*.html

Macedonia, of course, is a part of Greece". Strabo, VII, Frg. 9
http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/...ragments*.html

But north of the gulf, the first inhabitants are Greeks called Epirotes....
Procopius
http://books.google.com/books?id=9m6...page&q&f=false
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Old November 13th, 2005, 05:29 AM   #6
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haha, nic pun.. lol yeah i dont think itll get built, besides 25 years?!?! thats like for ever, by then suburbs will extend into palm springs and they'll be thinking of making a tunnel through mt. san jacinto
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Old November 13th, 2005, 07:38 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PotatoGuy
haha, nic pun.. lol yeah i dont think itll get built, besides 25 years?!?! thats like for ever, by then suburbs will extend into palm springs and they'll be thinking of making a tunnel through mt. san jacinto
Or maybe a tunnel from PCH in Santa Monica to like East LA
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Old November 13th, 2005, 10:26 AM   #8
FROM LOS ANGELES
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And giant train stations, at least 2 more Grand Centrals.
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Old November 13th, 2005, 02:46 PM   #9
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Being a quake zone shouldn't matter. I've read that there are tunnels in the Bay Area that are equally close to fault areas too.
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Old November 14th, 2005, 07:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogeorge
Intersting, but kind of risky, since you would be tunneling right above major fault lines.
I haven't heard of a tunnel collapsing in Japan yet.
They have worse earthquakes there.
This earthquake-phobia excuse for not building tunnels was probably popularized by oil companies.
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