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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 13th, 2013, 07:50 AM   #4461
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Old December 13th, 2013, 08:41 AM   #4462
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I LOL-ed at the Omaha-Las Vegas HSL.
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Old December 15th, 2013, 12:08 AM   #4463
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Originally Posted by Jbte View Post
I would love to see this implemented as soon as possible.

It would be also nice if High Speed Rail technology could be fine tuned to run economically at 250mph(402km/h). That would be a sweet spot for the size of the U.S.

Last edited by FM 2258; December 15th, 2013 at 12:17 AM.
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Old December 15th, 2013, 12:02 PM   #4464
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AAF will only have a MAS of 79 mph for 60 miles (between West Palm and Miami). The 140 mile section between West Palm and Cocoa will be 110 mph,
Yes, on existing, shared track. It may not be scheduled to stop, but it'll be stopping or slowing for any number of unscheduled points along the line. They may be capable of scheduling it for a 70mph average speed, but they'd be fools to not pad the schedule and run the risk of many late trains and what would amount to false advertising. With diesel locomotives hauling heavy rolling stock the slightest disruption is going to play havoc with their schedule. Hell, the average speed for Amtrak's Acela includes an appreciable pad and it's given priority over almost all other traffic on the line.

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I'm also willing to bet that AAF will run the original FHSR route between Orlando and Tampa at 125 mph. It's not 185 mph, but it really doesn't matter when the distance between the two cities is 90 miles.
I rather doubt it. FECI doesn't own real estate in downtown Tampa that they cannot currently develop. It's not like AAF is anything other than a real estate development project with a long tail hanging off toward Orlando. Were they able to finance their development plans without the FRA loans which require they create some rail service I'd be willing to bet the very risky rail portion of the project would evaporate as fast as they could pull the webpage off the server.

It's nice that they can use their real estate development to pay down the debt incurred constructing AAF and maybe even provide a return to investors. But when they've built a 50mph average speed railroad which isn't attracting enough market share to cover its operating expenditures that real estate money isn't going to be there to subsidize their losses. I hope the State of Florida is prepared to step up and keep the service running when FEC loses interest in sustaining its losses.

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Originally Posted by chrsjrcj View Post
Also, because of the improvements to the FEC track that AAF will require, we'll likely see Tri-Rail service on the FEC within the next 5 or 6 years. Amtrak service is starting to look like a pretty good possibility too. It's really shaping up to be a good public-private partnership with the FEC and Florida.
Again, that assumes it gets built. It's a very nice paper railroad, but they have a long way to go before they can even begin to meet their claims. Given all the brash promises for "private" rail services, I'm none too optimistic they'll meet their goals or even create a self-supporting rail system.

But I'd be delighted to be proven wrong.
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Old December 17th, 2013, 06:48 PM   #4465
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http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?sec...ate&id=9359971

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Board approves eminent domain move for high-speed rail train
Friday, December 13, 2013
This image provided by the California High Speed Rail Authority shows an artists rendering of a high-speed train station



This image provided by the California High Speed Rail Authority shows an artist's rendering of a high-speed train station. California's ambitious bullet train project is picking up momentum thanks to the $8 billion set aside for high-speed rail development in the economic stimulus package signed into law this week. The state is aggressively going after federal funding for the 800-mile high-speed rail system as it vies with a dozen designated high-speed rail corridors across the nation for a share of the money. (AP Photo/California High Speed Rail Authority)
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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A state board gave approval Friday for the California High-Speed Rail Authority to start the process of seizing its first piece of property through eminent domain for a $68 billion bullet train.

The State Public Works Board voted 3-0 to approve a request from the authority to try to seize a 2.5-acre parcel in Fresno that is needed to build an underground trench for the project. The authority has declared an impasse with the owner of property.

Fresno County records value the property at $2.4 million. It includes a 20,000 square-foot commercial building that is leased to the state Department of Corrections.

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Rail officials said they have been unable to reach an agreement with owner Frank Solomon Jr. after making an initial offer in May. Details of the offers have not been made public.

Solomon did not appear at the hearing and a phone listing under that name in Fresno could not receive messages.

Don Grebe, director of real property for the rail authority, said the parcel has been pegged as critical to acquire early because of the complicated construction needed to be done there. He said the rail authority is still open to negotiations with the owner.

The action by the board allows the rail authority to file paperwork in court asking a judge to determine the fair market value of the property as well as compensation the owner is entitled to for relocation.

The legal action also could allow the rail authority to access the property and start construction even before the state owns it.

Frank Olivera, co-chairman of the group Citizens for High-Speed Rail Accountability, told the board it would be premature to let the state acquire the property, given recent legal and administrative setbacks for the project.

Last month, a Sacramento County judge invalidated the state's funding plan and said it must have 130 miles of environmental clearances in place to meet the terms of Proposition 1A, the bond measure voters approved to sell nearly $10 billion in bonds for high-speed rail.

"I question the necessity to even take this parcel when the rail authority may not even be able to pay for it," Olivera said.

Grebe said the authority has closed escrow on five of the 380 parcels needed to complete the first nearly 30-mile stretch from Madera to Fresno.

"Overall we have people that have been signing agreements. I think it's been going quite positively, slowly," he said. Still, he estimated that as many as 20 percent of the properties could end up going through the eminent domain process.

Olivera, the rail opponent, said the prospect of eminent domain has cast a pall over many residents and business owners in the train's proposed path.

"Everybody is scared of the state of California coming to your house and saying we're going to take this, we're going to take your parking lot or your business, and they don't know what to do," he said.

Grebe said if the project were scrapped at some point and the property was no longer needed, state law gives the original owner the first option to buy it back.

(Copyright ©2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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Old January 5th, 2014, 11:14 PM   #4466
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I guess nobody had caught on to this news.

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Abe proposes to provide 5 billion dollars US through International Development Bank to develop Maglev line from DC to Baltimore.

It was learned through government officials that PM Abe when meeting Obama last year in February had made a proposal that Japan is willing to provide 5 billion dollars in loan to develop a JRC type Maglev line between Washington DC and Baltimore.

JRC is willing to provide the technology free of patent fee if the US agrees in the project... for the original article in Japanese click here
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Old January 6th, 2014, 12:44 AM   #4467
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I wonder how that would go down politically?
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Old January 6th, 2014, 01:33 AM   #4468
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It seems kind of like an irrelevant proposal to me. That's only a 60 mile distance; a maglev is not going to be significantly faster than a traditional HSL over that distance.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 02:03 AM   #4469
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aquaticko View Post
It seems kind of like an irrelevant proposal to me. That's only a 60 mile distance; a maglev is not going to be significantly faster than a traditional HSL over that distance.
It's up to the US Federal Goverrnment to extend the route up to NY and beyond. The Japanese proposal is just to kick start the entire NEC Maglev project.
I believe the leak by the Japanese government official was to move the disscussion to the general public which had been kept behind closed doors by US beauracarcy.
Some may remember that some US Government officials visited the Yamanashi Maglev test track for a joy ride last year. Now we know why they were here for.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 02:08 AM   #4470
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I understand, but even given our country's gullible politicians/citizenry, I don't think anyone's going to be fooled into undertaking such an expensive endeavor as a full DC-NYC maglev line just because a third party is donating a relatively small amount of funding for just a portion of that line.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 02:47 AM   #4471
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Originally Posted by aquaticko View Post
I understand, but even given our country's gullible politicians/citizenry, I don't think anyone's going to be fooled into undertaking such an expensive endeavor as a full DC-NYC maglev line just because a third party is donating a relatively small amount of funding for just a portion of that line.
Don't think 5 Billion dollars is exactly pocket change especially when you consider the Tokyo Nagoya route only costs 50 billion dollars for construction cost and the route is approx. 280 Km.
The 5 billion would probably pay the entire DC Baltimore route construction cost even if it was tunneled all the way.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 04:44 AM   #4472
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Originally Posted by SamuraiBlue View Post
It's up to the US Federal Goverrnment to extend the route up to NY and beyond. The Japanese proposal is just to kick start the entire NEC Maglev project. I believe the leak by the Japanese government official was to move the disscussion to the general public which had been kept behind closed doors by US beauracarcy. Some may remember that some US Government officials visited the Yamanashi Maglev test track for a joy ride last year. Now we know why they were here for.
No, it's been known for quite some time that this is what they want to do.

The problem is that they're exporting the wrong technology. They should just invest in the existing plans to create an actual PDL to operate the Acela on.

maglev hasn't really reached a cost advantage yet with traditional rail.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 11:20 AM   #4473
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Originally Posted by SamuraiBlue View Post
Don't think 5 Billion dollars is exactly pocket change especially when you consider the Tokyo Nagoya route only costs 50 billion dollars for construction cost and the route is approx. 280 Km.
The 5 billion would probably pay the entire DC Baltimore route construction cost even if it was tunneled all the way.
The DC Baltimore is roughly 1/3 the distance of the Tokyo Nagoya line so I don't see how can 5 billion USD covers the construction cost, unless US construction cost is significantly lower than Japan's. I think it'll be much better to spend the money on a conventional PDL, a 200+ mph conventional line is just as good as a maglev for the US passengers who have not had the chance to ride on a real HSR.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 12:17 PM   #4474
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The DC Baltimore is roughly 1/3 the distance of the Tokyo Nagoya line so I don't see how can 5 billion USD covers the construction cost, unless US construction cost is significantly lower than Japan's. I think it'll be much better to spend the money on a conventional PDL, a 200+ mph conventional line is just as good as a maglev for the US passengers who have not had the chance to ride on a real HSR.
Some Rail projects that region are pushing 1-2 billion for half that distance. That corridor and anything in the Northeast in general will require a lot of tunnel for something new. I rather see conventional rail that would benefit a larger chunk of the population then a Maglev that only the Rich could use. I doubt the average ticket price will be affordable for a DC-Baltimore salary.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 12:21 PM   #4475
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maglev has high seed capital costs, but very low maintenance and operation costs.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 12:49 PM   #4476
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Are you sure? It would be better to wait for the Chuo Shinkansen to state it...
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Old January 6th, 2014, 02:14 PM   #4477
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Are you sure? It would be better to wait for the Chuo Shinkansen to state it...
Not really since JR Tokai has about 5 years worth of data on maintenance obtained from the Yamanashi test track.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 02:24 PM   #4478
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Are you sure? It would be better to wait for the Chuo Shinkansen to state it...
Didn't they test that extensively in Germany as well?

I'm thinking out of an engineering standpoint. maglev trains don't have friction with (most of) track. There aren't complicated switches and far fewer mechanical parts that need constant maintenance. That, alone, should drastically reduce ongoing costs of operating the system and the wear-and-tear on vehicles, let alone tracks.

Maglev allows for tighter curves and steeper grades as well, which is a benefit in crowded corridors. It is also more silent, though I'm not sure how much noisy would be air displacement alone at speeds approaching 400 km/h.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 03:29 PM   #4479
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maglev has high seed capital costs, but very low maintenance and operation costs.
But I don't think its right for this corridor....conventional would be better and easier to build...and have more benefits.
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Old January 6th, 2014, 04:07 PM   #4480
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Quote:
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Some Rail projects that region are pushing 1-2 billion for half that distance. That corridor and anything in the Northeast in general will require a lot of tunnel for something new. I rather see conventional rail that would benefit a larger chunk of the population then a Maglev that only the Rich could use. I doubt the average ticket price will be affordable for a DC-Baltimore salary.
One interesting point of Maglev is that the tunnel diameter will be smaller compared to wheel on rail conventional trains since it has no boogies or over head wiring which reflex directly to construction cost.
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