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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 January 11th, 2015, 09:01 PM   #5241
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Originally Posted by 00Zy99 View Post

You have repeatedly posted disparaging things (using derogatory and at times outright cursing language) without evidence to back them up. That is something that is not productive to the board at minimum and could constitute trolling.
You may be confusing me with someone else. Can you please PM me and identify the potentially offensive verbiage?

Thanks.
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Old January 11th, 2015, 09:11 PM   #5242
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Been reading the comments, Woonsocket54 is very pessimistic about HSR in the U.S. Just sayin'.
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Old January 11th, 2015, 09:14 PM   #5243
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Been reading the comments, Woonsocket54 is very pessimistic about HSR in the U.S.
There's more to the US than Fresno.
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Old January 11th, 2015, 11:16 PM   #5244
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Not to mention that pessimism doesn't constitute trolling.

At this point, I don't think that CAHSR opponents have an argument, but people are allowed to voice their opinions. America, free speech, bla bla.
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Old January 12th, 2015, 02:58 AM   #5245
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Originally Posted by Woonsocket54 View Post
There's more to the US than Fresno.
and what point are you trying to make here?
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Old January 12th, 2015, 06:25 AM   #5246
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That I'm not pessimistic about HSR in the US in general, just this particular HSR in particular.
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Old January 12th, 2015, 09:08 PM   #5247
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Considering how well-scrutinized this project is, you must be particularly particular, then .
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Old January 12th, 2015, 11:23 PM   #5248
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woonsocket54 View Post
Existing track = true HSR???
It will barely have time to reach top speed (3-4 minutes best case access/decel ) in the urban areas as stations are closer to together. Dedicated rails isn't as important if stations are close together.

SF – SJ = ~50mi ( 80km ).
There will be stops at SFO & Palo Alto, though I'm not sure if all trains will stop there. Perhaps someone else knows the answer to that.

SF - SFO (~15 mi) . I doubt it could average more than 75mph (incl. accel/decel time). I don't even think it would get up to its max speed of 220mph, even with a quick accelerating train like Japan's N700-i.

SFO - SJ (~35m) ~15 minutes dedicated HSR, avg ~125 mph over the trip. Sharing rails will likely increase this to 30 minutes.

Interestingly, This trip is almost exactly equivalent to Odawara - Tokyo in Japan. Although the Shinkansen in Tokyo does run on dedicated tracks within the city of Tokyo, in realistic terms...

Here's the avg. speed for Odawara - Yokohama - Shinagawa(Tokyo) - Tokyo

Segments
Odawara - Yokohama ( 55.1km - 16 min ) = 207km/h ( 129mph )
Yokohama - Shinagawa ( 22.0km - 11 min ) = 120km/h ( 75mph )
Shinagawa - Tokyo (6.8km - 6 min ) = 68km/h (42mph)

Whole Trip:
Odawara - Tokyo ( 83.9 km - 33 min ) = 153km/h (95mph)

Partial Trip:
Yokohama - Tokyo ( 28.8km - 26 min ) = 66km/h (41mph)

THE POINT is... station spacing has a drastic effect on operations meaning that for the outset, running on existing rails in urban areas isn't a deal breaker. Note, in Japan, ALL trains stop at Yokohama, Shinagawa(Tokyo) and Tokyo.

CAHSR will also be faster than trains on Japan's Tokaido line, which currently have a max speed of 270km/h. CAHSR Trains will cruise at 330km/h (205mph) in the central parts of the line.

Another parallel comparison is the Paris - London Eurostar. Initially, Eurostar was limited to 160km/h (~99mph) along the 108km ( 67mi) segment in Britain.

1994 - Paris to London was 2:56. 108km segment limited to 160km/h
2003 - Paris to London was 2:35. 74km section 1 increased to 300km/h
2007 - Paris to London was 2:15. 39km section 2 increased to 230km/h

Read more about HS1 upgrade.

Using Japan as a model for efficient, fast and frequent service and seeing the problems Britain has with its very first high speed train line (and still only HSR line) you can kind of see how it will shake out in CA.

It'll be fast in the middle and slow in the cities. Due to station spacing, it doesn't overly matter, but to be truly competitive, it will likely be gradually upgraded to support higher speeds in the urban areas.
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Old January 12th, 2015, 11:38 PM   #5249
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One more thing...

To anyone who points at Amtrak ridership and thinks HSR will fail because of that...

How many passenger ocean liner companies are still making the trans-atlantic run?
How many airlines run propeller planes long distance?

We never really think about the incremental upgrades to the airport infrastructure over the decades that has allowed large planes like the 747 and now the A380 to even land and be usable.
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Old January 12th, 2015, 11:51 PM   #5250
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Actually I really enjoy taking Amtrak from Grand Rapids to Chicago. It's always clean and comfortable. Also I would say a reason for a low Amtrak ridership is due to the amount of neglect it gets. If you need a good example just go look at how inconvenient the website is.
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Old January 13th, 2015, 12:11 AM   #5251
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nyarch21 View Post
Actually I really enjoy taking Amtrak from Grand Rapids to Chicago. It's always clean and comfortable. Also I would say a reason for a low Amtrak ridership is due to the amount of neglect it gets. If you need a good example just go look at how inconvenient the website is.
Clean, comfortable and clickey-clackety slow. Looks like that trip takes 4 hours!!!

The (similar-length) 175 mi trip between Nagoya and Odawara takes 69 minutes non-stop and runs semi-hourly.
The local service makes 8 stops and takes 2:10 (runs every 30 minutes).

Costs about $100 for the trip (runs at a profit) timetable.

If they had HSR like this between Grand Rapids and Chicago:
  • How many would take the 55 minute flight?
  • How many would make the 3 hour drive?
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Old January 13th, 2015, 12:31 AM   #5252
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It is a shame a rich country like USA doesn't have HSR. The problem can be "lobby" of car industry and cultural trend to individualism that cars represent. I think if US wants to be independent from oil sources should invest a lot in electrified railways. HSR should be a priority to Americans, but it is too hard convince conservatives of it. Like germans, Americans are too attached to cars. So it will difficult to reduce American dependence on oil and countries that are hostile to USA: Russia, Iran, Venezuela....
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Old January 13th, 2015, 01:51 AM   #5253
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goy View Post
It is a shame a rich country like USA doesn't have HSR. The problem can be "lobby" of car industry and cultural trend to individualism that cars represent. I think if US wants to be independent from oil sources should invest a lot in electrified railways. HSR should be a priority to Americans, but it is too hard convince conservatives of it. Like germans, Americans are too attached to cars. So it will difficult to reduce American dependence on oil and countries that are hostile to USA: Russia, Iran, Venezuela....
the private sector should be involved, not the government.
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Old January 13th, 2015, 01:56 AM   #5254
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skyscraperhighrise View Post
the private sector should be involved, not the government.
The new Texas proposal appears to balance both worlds - libertarian desire to avoid coercion but modern proposal to get HS trains running.

I agree with previous posters. Libertarians especially should welcome getting government out of road building, oil industry ties and links to bad countries overseas just because you need their oil.
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Old January 13th, 2015, 04:03 AM   #5255
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bluemeansgo, I appreciate you giving me an example of a HSR line similar in distance from Grand Rapids to Chicago. Sometimes when I Hear about all these projects proposed elsewhere I have no way of comprehending since all these areas are foreign to me. Any comparisons to the Midwest are warmly welcomed!
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluemeansgo View Post
Clean, comfortable and clickey-clackety slow. Looks like that trip takes 4 hours!!!

The (similar-length) 175 mi trip between Nagoya and Odawara takes 69 minutes non-stop and runs semi-hourly.
The local service makes 8 stops and takes 2:10 (runs every 30 minutes).

Costs about $100 for the trip (runs at a profit) timetable.

If they had HSR like this between Grand Rapids and Chicago:
  • How many would take the 55 minute flight?
  • How many would make the 3 hour drive?
Yes but does HSR always come with a higher trip cost? It cost about $30 to go one way from GR to Chicago on the Amtrak route. A more popular choice for me over the years has been to drive to Michigan City, Indiana(2hrs), and then take the commuter rail to Millenium Station (an additional 2hrs). With this option I am able to go the full distance conveniently. When tickets go for $8.50 one way, this is almost always the better option. I was able to make my last trip for $35 round trip.

The first question that comes to mind when people make arguments for HSR is how many people would pay so much more for the extra convenience? It is currently a 55 minute flight from GR to Chicago, but most people I come across still prefer to travel to Chicago via car or rail. The benefit of the vehicle is that it is more economically efficient when you travel in large numbers since you pay a flat rate for your group transportation vs a transportation service where you have to pay for each person individually.

Many people think that HSR is very important to infrastructure, do you think that the Midwest could ever have a high speed network? I can fantasize about it, but I'm not sure if I can ever see it realisticly happening.
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Old January 13th, 2015, 05:16 AM   #5256
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Quote:
the private sector should be involved, not the government.
Well lets be honest. It's been over 50 years since the first high speed trains started for there to be serious headway towards privately built HSR in the US. And Texas Central has not even begun construction yet. Also Houston -> Dallas is a very low hanging fruit. There is nothing in between except for rolling farm fields. For whatever historical reason, there just isn't a lot of population along the I-45 corridor and the terrain is benign. And in Texas, there's not much of a NIMBY culture, and rural county governments don't have a great deal of power to decide what can be built where. Also the south side of Dallas and the North Side of Houston have plenty of open areas where you could thread a HSR line next to warehouses and vacant lots and nobody will complain about noise or it being an eyesore. So basically I can see them building it at a very low cost per mile where most of the route is at-grade and runs in a straight line across some pastures and cotton fields, compared to any line in northeast or California that would involve tunneling or building viaducts through towns and buying out neighboring landowners and fighting lawsuits. And finally it fits perfectly in the ideal time/distance niche high speed rail fills. And the two cities are large and growing.

Though I wish all these private developers luck, if they do succeed then that is good for everyone. The government can save money for something else.
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Old January 13th, 2015, 07:48 AM   #5257
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Old January 13th, 2015, 10:44 AM   #5258
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nyarch21 View Post
bluemeansgo, I appreciate you giving me an example of a HSR line similar in distance from Grand Rapids to Chicago. Sometimes when I Hear about all these projects proposed elsewhere I have no way of comprehending since all these areas are foreign to me. Any comparisons to the Midwest are warmly welcomed!


Yes but does HSR always come with a higher trip cost? It cost about $30 to go one way from GR to Chicago on the Amtrak route. A more popular choice for me over the years has been to drive to Michigan City, Indiana(2hrs), and then take the commuter rail to Millenium Station (an additional 2hrs). With this option I am able to go the full distance conveniently. When tickets go for $8.50 one way, this is almost always the better option. I was able to make my last trip for $35 round trip.

The first question that comes to mind when people make arguments for HSR is how many people would pay so much more for the extra convenience? It is currently a 55 minute flight from GR to Chicago, but most people I come across still prefer to travel to Chicago via car or rail. The benefit of the vehicle is that it is more economically efficient when you travel in large numbers since you pay a flat rate for your group transportation vs a transportation service where you have to pay for each person individually.

Many people think that HSR is very important to infrastructure, do you think that the Midwest could ever have a high speed network? I can fantasize about it, but I'm not sure if I can ever see it realistically happening.
I guess it depends on who's running it and what kind of traveler you want to attract. I would say... HSR is USUALLY a little less expensive than

HSR doesn't HAVE to be expensive, it depends on a lot of factors. In Japan, HSR is usually a little lower than the price to fly, but people take it for its convenience. Prices will reflect what the market will bear. Grand Rapids would likely be on a line between Detroit and Chicago, by the looks of it, but honestly, I don't really know the area other than looking on a map.

Some lines are cash-cows. JR-Central, which operates the line between Tokyo and Osaka is very profitable. They're profitable enough that they decided to bank-roll a somewhat parallel mag-lev line for $80 billion dollars. 80% of this line will be in tunnels.

Tokyo to Osaka (552km) is $144 one-way which consists of a $87 base fare and a $57 Express Fee. It works out to ¥26 ($.25)/km. That's pretty standard across the whole network. Despite the high cost of construction, there will only be a price difference of about $10 apparently.

I'm sure they COULD charge less and be less profitable, but if people will pay it, then they will charge it.

You typically find that those that wouldn't fly MAY take the train due to its convenience. Air travel is a major hassle and usually outside of the city centre. Business travelers will take the train because of its speed and convenience. Those that usually drive will consider the train because it is so much quicker than driving and takes you right downtown.

Families usually don't take the train en masse, but at least in Japan, children under 6 are free (and sit on a lap) 6+ kids are half price.

I hope that gives you an idea of how a complete system works in a country with similar wealth as the US. There's much more of course
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Old January 13th, 2015, 05:10 PM   #5259
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nyarch21 View Post
Many people think that HSR is very important to infrastructure, do you think that the Midwest could ever have a high speed network? I can fantasize about it, but I'm not sure if I can ever see it realisticly happening.
I think from a european perspective, Midwest is one of the best places to have HSR in the US. Many big population centers in distances below 250 miles. For example, a line from Milwuakee to Columbus passing through Chicago and Indiannapolis would connect around 16 million people within less than 350 miles. And all that with a line passing mostly through flat ground. Similar cases could be made for lines to St Louis, Cincinatti and Detroit, which, despite its decline, remains a metro with over 4 million people. For connections to Milwaukee and Indianapolis not even real HSR is needed, a service with Acela's characteristics would work fine.

So, the basics are there and in the case of Chicago at least probably the money. What is lacking however is the political will, which made the difference in California. In the Midwest, there is instead a Governor who gave back $800 million federal money that would have been spent in his state instead of creating a 65 mile rail connection between the two biggest cities in his state.
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Old January 13th, 2015, 06:12 PM   #5260
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Which state was that?
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