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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 May 14th, 2008, 04:57 AM   #441
Mariachi McMuffin
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Amtrak has said that increasing speed on its Acela lines will not substantially make a difference in destination time.

You people are fighting a battle your not going to win. Americans dont want to ride on trains. Until oil/gas prices make regional air/auto travel too expensive, then its not going to happen. Trains are seen as a step below taking a plane in this country.
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Old May 14th, 2008, 05:09 AM   #442
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mariachi McMuffin View Post
Amtrak has said that increasing speed on its Acela lines will not substantially make a difference in destination time.

You people are fighting a battle your not going to win. Americans dont want to ride on trains. Until oil/gas prices make regional air/auto travel too expensive, then its not going to happen. Trains are seen as a step below taking a plane in this country.
The ignorance, stuns me.

You do realize amtrak controls more than half of the train plane NY-DC and NY-Boston market right? Door to door is faster via plane to Boston than the train, yet for some reason the train has the majority market share? How does that fit into your the train is for the peasants idiotic world.

So no, the train is not seen as a step below flying in this country, in case you have not realized a prostate exam, passing kidney stones and giving birth is more pleasurable than flying in this country. So I am just gonna call you a bias idiot once again and go on my way.
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Old May 14th, 2008, 10:12 AM   #443
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mariachi McMuffin View Post
Amtrak has said that increasing speed on its Acela lines will not substantially make a difference in destination time.

You people are fighting a battle your not going to win. Americans dont want to ride on trains. Until oil/gas prices make regional air/auto travel too expensive, then its not going to happen. Trains are seen as a step below taking a plane in this country.
Guess what...

I'm American and I want to ride a high speed train *shock**shock*. I don't know what "you people" means but you aren't on some morale high ground over me.

And you think cutting almost an hour off the current time between DC and New York is not enough? (from 2:30 hours to 1:30 hours?). Please.
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Old May 14th, 2008, 10:27 AM   #444
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mariachi McMuffin View Post
Amtrak has said that increasing speed on its Acela lines will not substantially make a difference in destination time.
I'm no expert on USA rail politics, but if I remeber rightly what Amtrak actually said is that investing any more into it's existing tracks for some gains in speed would not substantially make a difference - read into that a brand new high speed line would make a difference, politics and nimbyism aside.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 12:55 AM   #445
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Galls View Post
The ignorance, stuns me.

You do realize amtrak controls more than half of the train plane NY-DC and NY-Boston market right? Door to door is faster via plane to Boston than the train, yet for some reason the train has the majority market share? How does that fit into your the train is for the peasants idiotic world.

So no, the train is not seen as a step below flying in this country, in case you have not realized a prostate exam, passing kidney stones and giving birth is more pleasurable than flying in this country. So I am just gonna call you a bias idiot once again and go on my way.
When did I say that it was my viewpoint? Americans do view train travel as a step below air travel. Leave your New England bubble sometime.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 12:59 AM   #446
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ramvid01 View Post
Guess what...

I'm American and I want to ride a high speed train *shock**shock*. I don't know what "you people" means but you aren't on some morale high ground over me.

And you think cutting almost an hour off the current time between DC and New York is not enough? (from 2:30 hours to 1:30 hours?). Please.
When did I say that I wouldnt ride a train? You people judge me and its laughable.

Build your high speed train to D.C., but dont expect the rest of the lower density U.S. to follow suit until there is a need for it. You train advocates try to shoe-horn train travel down our throats and dont let the market decide. There obviously is not a big enough need for it, or else there wouldnt be such a fight to build these things in pretty much every place around the country.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 10:56 AM   #447
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Mariachi McMuffin - I agree with you that the majority of americans have the view that you say, I don't remember who but a politician I think described HSR as a glorified form of victorian transport (even though the railways pre-date Queen Victoria). There are amny and varied reasons why HSRs haven't happened, and it's not just fair and free market conditioins. there's little political will, the freight operators have such a stranglehold on operations that passneger services are severely impacted by them thereby suppressing ridership through poor services, which makes the case for HSR harder to convince without healthy classic rail services. Most other places in the world a have approved HSLs on the back healthy passenger numbers on the route already - for example Paris - Lyon had a similar average speed in the late 70s as Acela does now, and that was before the first French LGV was built.

But it's not the same playing field in the USA. Strange rules which say locos have to be ridiculously heavy restricts the speeds at which they can run or severely increases maintenance costs of the infrastrucure to way above what the rest of the world achieves. There are many other reasons too why the market is not a level playing field for passnger rail in the USA.

I hope I don't sound like I'm attacking you at all, that is not my intention!
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Old May 16th, 2008, 12:31 AM   #448
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^no, I dont think you are attacking me at all. Those other two were though.

High speed rail will happen eventually, its only a matter of time.
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Old May 18th, 2008, 11:54 PM   #449
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I think for the rest of the country to see the benefits of high speed rail the CHSR is going to have to be implemented. I really hope it pulls through, it makes no sense in spending almost $100 for roundtrip fair for a city one travels to quite often. So once CHSR is working the rest of the nation will realize how much more efficient it is in connecting corriodors than flights where one has to arrive 90 minutes early to check their bags and wait in the security lines then to find out their flight is delayed....

Amtrak is so pathetic. If one wants to go by rail to Los Angeles, they would have to take a train from Emeryville, which is on the other side of the bay. Then they would catch a slow train with so many stops , it probably takes about 7 hours to get to Bakersfield. Then from Bakersfield one would have to take a bus to get to Union Station in Los Angeles, and that bus is bound to get stuck in traffic. The Coast Starlight from San Jose to LA takes i think 12 hours? And there have been huge delays of up to 9 hours... so yea Amtrak? Its a third world rail line.... Even Greyhound would be a better substitute over that.......
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Old May 19th, 2008, 05:51 AM   #450
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mariachi McMuffin View Post
When did I say that I wouldnt ride a train? You people judge me and its laughable.

Build your high speed train to D.C., but dont expect the rest of the lower density U.S. to follow suit until there is a need for it. You train advocates try to shoe-horn train travel down our throats and dont let the market decide. There obviously is not a big enough need for it, or else there wouldnt be such a fight to build these things in pretty much every place around the country.
Wow, so hostile? The Northeast can continue to upgrade to a more efficient means of travel while you and your beloved Milwaukee can sit around wasting away. It's not like Milwaukee is important anyway.
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Old May 21st, 2008, 04:42 PM   #451
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Illinois has invested plenty into HS rail and is at the forefront of building the MWHSR system. I don't think Mariachi knows what he is talking about, or what is going on in his own state. The Hiawatha Amtrak line between Chicago and Milw has seen record ridership in each of the last 3 years. This line will likely be the first true HS line outside of the NE Acela. The 2nd midwest HS line will likely be Chicago-St. Louis and then Chicago - Detroit.

Ther are currently 6 rounds trips daily between Chi and Mke. They are scheduled for 1.5 hours for the 92 mile ride. Already that is faster than you could actually drive that route, esp between 7:00am and 7:00pm.

Ridership Total for YTD March 2008
Line FY08 FY07 %gain over FY07
Hiawatha Chicago - Milwaukee 62,399 47,863 +30.4%
Lincoln Service Chicago-St. Louis 42,932 33,857 +26.8%
Chicago-Carbondale (Illini/Saluki) 24,581 20,857 +17.9%
Wolverine Chicago - Detroit 40,115 35,834 +11.9%
Hoosier State Chicago - Indy 2,948 2,110 +39.76

Source is Amtrak monthly reports:
http://www.amtrak.com/pdf/0803monthly.pdf

Last edited by jpIllInoIs; May 21st, 2008 at 04:48 PM.
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Old May 21st, 2008, 05:22 PM   #452
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That fits the title of the thread perfectly - that is not high speed rail at all. That is typical of outer suburban commuter lines in most european countries where speed is not the important factor. Acela is not accepted as a real high speed line anywhere else either, apart from a small 25 mile section of the entire northeast corridor.
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Old May 29th, 2008, 11:48 PM   #453
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpIllInoIs View Post
Illinois has invested plenty into HS rail
Uhm, on whose planet might Illinois be found?

Here, lemme share some comparative state of mind with you: Voilŕ!
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Old May 30th, 2008, 11:21 AM   #454
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpIllInoIs View Post
Illinois has invested plenty into HS rail and is at the forefront of building the MWHSR system... There are currently 6 rounds trips daily between Chi and Mke. They are scheduled for 1.5 hours for the 92 mile ride.
I agree with you that this is faster than the car - especially during the rush hours. Remains the fact that the internationally agreed definition of HSR is speeds of no less than 250 km/h on a substantial part of the line. (Proposed by the European Commission for its own purposes and since then widely used.) I guess in the Imperial system that would be just over 150 miles per hour?

I think I have a problem with HSR in the United States that is a bit different from that of most other posters on this thread. I don't think this boils down to "lower class vs. upper class transport" or, necessarily, an unwillingness of politicians to "see the light". Even in the US transport corridors which ressemble Lille-Paris-Lyon-Marseille it would be awfully difficult to replicate the success of the TGVs. (With the likely exception of Boston-New York-Washington DC.) Why? Because the European successes with HSR hinge not only on the point-to-point efficacy of these trains but also on the quality of the public transportation networks at the start and end points. French experts have actually expressed doubts about the viability of the proposed San Francisco-Los Angeles line. Nobody will get out of the train in LA and take a metro to their destination, because... there IS (almost) no metro. Which being so, if travellers know that they're going to need a car the moment they arrive to LA then they will drive there by car. - Or fly, and rent a car in the airport.

Last edited by priamos; May 30th, 2008 at 01:30 PM.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 01:45 PM   #455
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if travellers know that they're going to need a car the moment they arrive to LA then they will drive there by car. - Or fly, and rent a car in the airport.
Whats the difference between taking the train and renting a car and flying and renting a car?
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Old May 30th, 2008, 04:42 PM   #456
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Whats the difference between taking the train and renting a car and flying and renting a car?
Er....? Well, even the fastest highspeed train is much slower than a jet plane. For example, Paris-London takes 2h20 by Eurostar and about one hour by plane. So, why do most people prefer the train? Because the train goes city centre to city centre (plus, of course, these days also the security brouhaha in the airports...) so that you don't have to spend copious amounts of time getting to and from the airport. This advantage is only absolute if both your starting point and destination happens to be located next to the railway stations. It is dented if you have to travel at quite some distance between the railway station and your starting point and/or destination. And it is mostly eliminated if, any way round, you have to step into a rented car upon arrival.

Last edited by priamos; May 30th, 2008 at 05:56 PM.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 05:39 PM   #457
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So if the train station would be outside the city it would work? Come on...I believe the topic is about routes where trains could be competitive with planes. If this statement is true,then what is the difference between taking train/renting and flying/renting?

Lets take this LA-SF distance(~550km). With a 250km/h train,its 2h,with a plane,probably 3h. Then why wont the train work? Both the airport and the train station will probably be far from your destination...Why is it more difficult to rent a car there than at the airport?
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Old May 30th, 2008, 06:13 PM   #458
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RawLee View Post
So if the train station would be outside the city it would work? Come on...I believe the topic is about routes where trains could be competitive with planes. If this statement is true,then what is the difference between taking train/renting and flying/renting?

Lets take this LA-SF distance(~550km). With a 250km/h train,its 2h,with a plane,probably 3h. Then why wont the train work? Both the airport and the train station will probably be far from your destination...Why is it more difficult to rent a car there than at the airport?
RawLee, you seem not to understand where I'm coming from? Very well, let's take a numerical example. The expected travel time between SF and LA is 3 hours, not 2 as you suggested (the planned line, far from straight, will be closer to 650 km). Flying takes 1 hour 15 minutes. If you're going to somewhere away from central LA then one might assume, for the sake of simplicity, that your destination is situated at an equal distance from the railway station and the airport. Let us call this additional transport time "X". Thus, the total travel time with plane and rental car becomes 1h15+X; the total travel time with train and rental care becomes 3h+X. The only situation in which a rational traveller will choose the train is if his/her commute to SF airport plus the checkin time is at least 1h45 minutes longer than his/her commute to SF railway station.

Conversely, in Paris a person arriving at Charles de Gaulle airport is in a bit of a bind (with or without rental car), whereas a person arriving at Gare du Nord/Gare de Lyon/Gare Montparnasse has access to a network of 14 urban metro lines, 5 suburban trains and, I suppose, 20-25 commuter lines to the outlying parts of the sprawl.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 06:56 PM   #459
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What about checking in,boarding,delays,weather,checking out? You dont have these with trains...and you dont die if the train runs out of fuel.

The speed just doesnt matter...250km/h is the bottom of HSR...could the plane compete with a TGV? I dont think so...it would do the trip barely over 1h,just like the plane.

So in the end,it doesnt matter where the airport/train station is,because you have to get away from it. It only depends on your "mood"(do I want to go through all that at the airport,or just get on the train?) and getting the connection you need at your destination. You dont need working PT at the end of your trip. Why? For the same reason why neither airports. So here I get back to my original question:

-Whats the difference between taking the train and renting a car and flying and renting a car?
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Old May 30th, 2008, 07:48 PM   #460
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HSR would work fantastically:
-All along the East Coast
-In California
-Los Angeles to Vegas, and maybe even California-Portland in Oregon-Seattle in Washington
-Connecting the major cities in Texas
...and maybe others as well, but definitely these for sure, which would cover a huge part of the US population.

There is nothing to lose. Advantegeous in light of increasing gas prices, fast connection times between the cities, comfortable, affordable, and more environmentally friendly too.
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