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View Poll Results: Should the US build or improve it's HSR network?
Yes 249 89.57%
No 29 10.43%
Voters: 278. You may not vote on this poll

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Old December 23rd, 2012, 05:22 PM   #3721
aquaticko
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Well, that's why I said "budgetary" toe in the water. I, and I'm sure most other people here, are well aware that the NEC Amtrak services are successful, but most other people aren't, and having to explain to your constituents in Missouri why there's $150 billion being spent on superfast trains in the Northeast and you have bridges that don't pass inspection is just that much harder than explaining away ~$100 billion in California, a place many already (incorrectly) associate with wreckless spending anyway. Not to mention the whole "shovel-ready" thing that I believe was part of the impetus for this particular project in the first place.

In the best of all possible worlds, we'll soon have the public realise what a joke the right in this country has become, and we can begin spending real money on rail and other transportation projects around the country.
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Old December 23rd, 2012, 07:21 PM   #3722
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aquaticko View Post
Well, that's why I said "budgetary" toe in the water. I, and I'm sure most other people here, are well aware that the NEC Amtrak services are successful, but most other people aren't, and having to explain to your constituents in Missouri why there's $150 billion being spent on superfast trains in the Northeast and you have bridges that don't pass inspection is just that much harder than explaining away ~$100 billion in California, a place many already (incorrectly) associate with wreckless spending anyway. Not to mention the whole "shovel-ready" thing that I believe was part of the impetus for this particular project in the first place.

In the best of all possible worlds, we'll soon have the public realise what a joke the right in this country has become, and we can begin spending real money on rail and other transportation projects around the country.
I don't buy it. First of all, the shovel ready thing could have been prepared for the NEC as well if they had any sense. There should have been a plan ready to go years ago.

Secondly, the average joe in rural Missouri (or small town America) will never realize this because it doesn't affect him directly, and to them trains = socialism/europe, etc. They will just keep on calling it a boondoggle/major waste of $$ like every other time anything regarding rail or transit is proposed in this country because it only serves them city folk. I don't think you are ever going to get the respect and support of these people so counting on it is a fools errand.

Last edited by aquablue; December 23rd, 2012 at 07:28 PM.
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Old December 24th, 2012, 03:22 AM   #3723
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How Ironic considering his small town probably came into existence because of some rail depot.
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Old December 24th, 2012, 02:41 PM   #3724
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Incredible pics of the construction process https://bitly.com/ZcX5pY
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Old December 24th, 2012, 04:23 PM   #3725
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How Ironic considering his small town probably came into existence because of some rail depot.
I'm not from Missouri; I'm from Manchester, NH. That was just an example which I thought of because of that one bridge in Missouri that's a major trucking throughway and yet is doesn't even approach being in acceptable condition.

I'm not saying I'm against either the NEC or California HSR projects. Believe me, I'm not. I'm just trying to acknowledge that people in the middle of the country have particular views about either coast, and yet seem more likely to me to essentially completely write off California, whereas they don't have quite that low an opinion about the East Coast. Maybe I'm biased and wrong. It was just a thought.

And it remains true that as much of a mess as land acquisition was in California, it could've/would've been a much bigger one in the NEC.
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Old December 25th, 2012, 06:52 PM   #3726
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I was referring to the people in small towns against HSR. not you. Sorry for the confusion.
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Old December 27th, 2012, 12:14 AM   #3727
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Mexico announced it is considering HSR. Are we really going to be last to the party? How pathetic.
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Old December 29th, 2012, 07:30 AM   #3728
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Interesting article about population density using census data.

You can play around with the map here
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Old December 29th, 2012, 08:38 AM   #3729
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From the above map I can definitely see a Everett-Portland line, they are two large population centers separated by over 100 miles of low density countryside. Besides the lower land acquisition cost they will not be building that many stops, significantly reducing trip time. I think all they need are Everett-Seattle-Tacoma-Olympia-Portland.
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Old December 29th, 2012, 07:03 PM   #3730
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hmmwv View Post
From the above map I can definitely see a Everett-Portland line, they are two large population centers separated by over 100 miles of low density countryside. Besides the lower land acquisition cost they will not be building that many stops, significantly reducing trip time. I think all they need are Everett-Seattle-Tacoma-Olympia-Portland.
Agreed. Don't forget to include Vancouver, BC too.
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Old December 29th, 2012, 10:40 PM   #3731
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Originally Posted by aquaticko View Post
is just that much harder than explaining away ~$100 billion in California, a place many already (incorrectly) associate with reckless spending anyway.
There is nothing incorrect about that widely held view.

California wastes money on so much foolishness, it's absurd.

The state is going broke. Construction costs and Union wages are beyond belief. Pensions are obscene for retired state workers, taxes are too high, and jobs are scarce.
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Old December 29th, 2012, 11:32 PM   #3732
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I've lived in California and it's certainly true that vast amounts of money are wasted. In my opinion a lot of it has to do with the peculiar form of direct democracy there. People just like to vote good things for themselves...

To me US government seems to be too divided and weak on anything other than military to spring for a major infrastructure investment. It could be done - the country is still much richer than China with all their construction, but I don't see it happening. Sad but true...
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Old December 30th, 2012, 01:13 AM   #3733
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenixboi08 View Post


Interesting article about population density using census data.

You can play around with the map here
Looks like an Atlanta-Charlotte-Raleigh line would be a good idea. Also, San Antonio-Austin-DFW. 125mph hour tilting trains on upgraded lines would be good in these areas as a first step. Electrification would help achieve a good service.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 01:17 AM   #3734
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
I've lived in California and it's certainly true that vast amounts of money are wasted. In my opinion a lot of it has to do with the peculiar form of direct democracy there. People just like to vote good things for themselves...

To me US government seems to be too divided and weak on anything other than military to spring for a major infrastructure investment. It could be done - the country is still much richer than China with all their construction, but I don't see it happening. Sad but true...
Their is plenty of investment in infrastructure, it just isn't in trains or transit.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 01:36 AM   #3735
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Originally Posted by aquablue View Post
Their is plenty of investment in infrastructure, it just isn't in trains or transit.
Of course there is some, big country after all, but I can't think of anything major right now. What did you mean with plenty? Mining perhaps?
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Old December 30th, 2012, 02:02 AM   #3736
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mostly mass transit I would say (light rail). Not to mention airport expansions/renovations. And there are improvements being done on existing rail. I don't think there needs to be much of a rush. In my opinion, if we push to quickly, we'll do it all wrong. It should be incremental.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 02:06 AM   #3737
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
Of course there is some, big country after all, but I can't think of anything major right now. What did you mean with plenty? Mining perhaps?
Roads, highways, tunnels, airports, etc.. Roads do count btw, lol

Miami Port Tunnel, for example.
Highways in Texas.
JFK terminal expansion
Chicago O'hare new runways
LAX terminal.

Some transit:

Rail Tunnels in NYC - SAS, ESA, 7th avenue line extension.
Light Rail expansions in various cities.

I'm sure there is more. Oil and Gas fracking.

Hopefully we can see the start of the CAHSR next year.

Last edited by aquablue; December 30th, 2012 at 02:35 AM.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 02:37 AM   #3738
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Originally Posted by China Hand View Post
There is nothing incorrect about that widely held view.

California wastes money on so much foolishness, it's absurd.

The state is going broke. Construction costs and Union wages are beyond belief. Pensions are obscene for retired state workers, taxes are too high, and jobs are scarce.
Jobs aren't scarce. It's got an unemployment rate of just under 10%, higher than the national average, but not by much, and it's dropping.

There is something incorrect about it. Name for me another trillion dollar economy which is required to have a balanced budget at the end of every fiscal year. Nevermind the fact that California is a net donor state in terms of redistribution of federal tax dollars. Nevermind that no one in their right mind would allow or cause the state to go broke considering the value it has to the national and global economy.

The U.S. has the sort of fiscal and monetary union and attitude about that which would save the Euro quickly, if it weren't for the Austrians in the ECB and those like you who keep egging them on. Look, I don't want to get into this, because I've tried to explain to you basic macroeconomics before, and you explicitly refused to listen. I suggest a mod delete these two specific posts, if possible.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 02:47 AM   #3739
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US infrastructure spending is pathetic anyway you cut it, including highways. 2.4% of GDP is literally half what Europe spends. It's what you get when half the country can't differentiate between spending and investing.

Anyways, I've had to cut this post down a number of times, because I tend to ramble on the subject, but aqua not to split hairs, but it's the 7 train extension, not the 7th Ave extension. Small difference but don't want anyone to get confused.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 06:19 AM   #3740
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Originally Posted by yankeesfan1000 View Post
US infrastructure spending is pathetic anyway you cut it, including highways. 2.4% of GDP is literally half what Europe spends. It's what you get when half the country can't differentiate between spending and investing.

Anyways, I've had to cut this post down a number of times, because I tend to ramble on the subject, but aqua not to split hairs, but it's the 7 train extension, not the 7th Ave extension. Small difference but don't want anyone to get confused.
LOL, yeah, that's right!

About the infrastructure spending. Well, I presume our military spending and wars often takes up some of the funding that would go to infrastructure otherwise. Reduce military spending by 1 percent or so and re-direct those funds to infrastructure, that would be a decent solution. Also, show evidence to the naysayers that our global competitiveness is actually being hurt by this lack of investment. I don't know if that is true our not at this time (perhaps in a future projection?) but you need to show these people the numbers before they will have any incentive to change their thinking.

For our rail systems, I think finding private overseas investors is what is required to help fund our projects, since the government won't.

Last edited by aquablue; December 30th, 2012 at 06:32 AM.
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