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Old November 3rd, 2007, 09:18 PM   #221
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I liked monkeyronin's plan. Very comprehensive, well thought out.


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Old November 4th, 2007, 04:30 PM   #222
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In Minnesota there have been talks of starting a new rail line between Minneapolis and Duluth, and would probably be operated by Amtrak. Trains would first run at 79mph, then 110 in the future, and eventually 125.
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Old November 5th, 2007, 08:34 AM   #223
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Some problems I find with monkeyronin's plan is there aren't enough east-west lines, only one that runs along I-80 (I think). A line along I-90 would be nice, and maybe extending the I-15 line north to Calgary (assuming security shit cools down at the borders).
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Old November 5th, 2007, 08:21 PM   #224
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Step 1. Create a single corporation owning all trackage in the entire country including most yards.

The US government comes in with $20 billion in share capital and owns 51% of the new corporation. Railroads get shares after the value of their trackage.

This new USRailways charges railroads for use. Any railroad can haul freight anywhere in the US for a change.

Impose a tax on long distance trucking say 300+ miles. They ruin our highways with their weights and clog the roads.

This tax, along with railway usage charges and federal and state contributions would go towards maintaining, improving and expanding trackage.

2. Dissolve Amtrack into regional entities with the States in each region having controlling rights.

A. Northeast
B. Great Lakes and Upper Midwest
C. Atlantic South
D. Florida
E. Gulf, Central South and Texas
F. Mountain West
G. California
H. Pacific Northwest

the future rail system would be primarily based on regional and not long-haul services.

Passenger rail services are given priority over freight services during daylight hours.

Investment in core routes. If the regional entities contribute 25% of investment the federal government is required to contribute the remainding 75%.

3. Impose a tax on short haul flying (under 350 miles) when there is a competing rail service. Connecting passengers, say you are flying from London to Boston via Newark, are except. The New York-Boston-Washington shuttle would be taxed heavily for example and the number of regional jets clogging or major airports would plummet.

this short haul tax would go directly to subsidize the competing rail service.


It would take a few years to build up but I feel these steps would get the US going in a positive direction on rail.
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Old November 5th, 2007, 08:25 PM   #225
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The Acela only goes 70 mph along the CT shore and that could be improved. It's already competitve with air for Bos-NYC; NYC Philly; NYC-DC; Pilly-DC. All of the largest cities in the northeast have extensive commuter rail and Bos, NYC and DC have large subway systems. Regional (slower) trains already ply the routes mentioned by 10rot in PA, VA and new Eng. Has anyone ever taken the Acela or a commuter rail line? Boston alone has something like 13 lines some of which go over 50 miles.
I have taken the Acela before from New York to Boston. It's OK, but I don't consider it to be in the league of the HSR networks in Europe and Japan. But it definitely has the potential to be great, if the government spent more money on uprgrading it.

Acela in Connecticut needs a MAJOR rehaul. It has grade crossings (or did?) in the New London area, and the rail between New Haven and New Rochelle, NY, which is owned by Metro North and not Amtrak, has the slowest speed on the entire system. The railroad in CT also doesn't allow tilting. In general currently, it's not HSR especially here.

As for the regional spur lines, they still need to be improved. I am not sure about how fast the trains on MBTA go because I never have been on it, but the Hartford-Springfield line needs major work. At this moment, I don't believe that it could take regular commuter rail.
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Old November 6th, 2007, 02:49 AM   #226
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Pretty much the same ideas as in Parade Magazine this Sunday:


A Better Way To Travel?
By Peter Richmond
Published: November 4, 2007

EDITOR'S NOTE: After our November 4 issue went to press, the Senate approved the Lautenberg-Lott Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act on October 30. The bill is now before the House.

American spent about 3.7 billion hours stuck in traffic last year, burning gasoline whose price had soared by 60%. At the airports, security lines snake endlessly, runways are choked, and delays are common. One recent study found that, between January and August 2007, one in four flights arrived late; 159 flights were kept on the tarmac for more than three hours in August. As a result, more than half of U.S. businesses augment commercial air travel with expensive corporate jets and charters. Isn’t there a better way?

One solution is staring us in the face. Many transportation experts insist that the best answer to transportation gridlock is efficient intercity rail travel. Trains use one-fifth less energy than cars or planes. They run in bad weather. They’re business-efficient and tourist-friendly. Yet, since the early 1960's—with the exception of the Northeast Corridor, from Boston to Washington, D.C.—railroad transportation in the U.S. has become largely irrelevant. For most Americans, train travel from city to city remains an afterthought. And for good reason: Our national rail system is inadequate, relying on aging equipment and a shrinking route-map. The system sorely lacks both financial resources and government support.

“The transportation funding mechanism is skewed toward highway construction,” says James RePass, principal executive of the National Corridors Initiative, a transportation advocacy group. “The game is rigged against rail.”

In contrast, the rest of the industrialized world is investing heavily in its train systems. From border to border, Europe is wiring itself for high-speed rail. The result? Decreased emissions and increased productivity. Some predict the eventual obsolescence of air travel on the continent.

How did we fall so far behind? Blame it on our love affair with the automobile and a historical antipathy of legislators for subsidizing the nation’s railroads. Our government’s disdain for trains began with FDR, who in the late 1930s turned his back on fat-cat railroad barons asking for federal handouts. Two decades later, President Eisenhower certified our commitment to cars when he built the interstate highway system.

The current administration has been particularly unfriendly. Amtrak, which is federally funded, received just $1.3 billion last year—the same as 25 years ago. Compare that to the $40 billion allocated for highways and the $14 billion for airlines in 2006. For the 2008 fiscal year, the Bush Administration pro- posed just $800 million for the railroad—a $500 million cut from 2007. In 2005, the President proposed pulling the plug entirely on Amtrak’s subsidy.

Critics of federal funding for Amtrak argue that, since it was created by Congress in 1970, the railroad has never turned a profit and serves only a small percentage of intercity travelers. They believe the system is a waste of taxpayer money. But Amtrak’s advocates in Congress point out that passenger rail systems around the world operate with government assistance. Others add that the government subsidizes our highway system and supports many aspects of passenger air travel.

“I’m amazed at the rancor about our numbers—they are so small,” says Alex Kummant, Amtrak’s CEO. “ It costs about $1.50 for every man, woman and child to sustain this network—one cup of coffee per person. Look at highway congestion, environmental issues, the capacity of airline travel. For city-to-city transportation, we need passenger rail.”

As our airways and highways have slowed down, demand for train travel has been increasing. In fact, Amtrak ridership was up for the fifth year in a row, reaching record levels—despite the fact that a third of trains arrived late last year. In the Northeast, since Amtrak introduced higher-speed Acela trains in 2000, the railroad’s share of 10,000 daily commuters between Washington, D.C., and New York City increased from 45% to 54%.

“Train travel is the thing for a one-day business trip,” says Malcolm Edgerton, a Chicago architect who travels often from Chicago to Springfield on Amtrak for work. A recent trip, he said, “would have meant seven hours of driving, and I would have been exhausted. Instead, I left in the morning, did work on the train, got there at noon, did my thing, even had time to visit a museum. Then, on the way back, I drank Scotch in the bar car and traded stories with a salesman and another architect. The round trip was $40.”

Experts predict that, with the population climbing well past 300 million, the demand for travel will only grow. Severe weather will further add to the transportation turmoil, leading travelers to look for alternatives to air travel. Witness the Midwestern storms last winter that forced the cancellation of more than 1,000 flights in two days in Chicago and St. Louis.

An efficient Amtrak, suggests New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg, could have carried riders through those squalls in style: “How wonderful is it to get on a train, look outside at the snow and say, ‘ Ho, ho, ho, here we go’?”

The key to improvements may be federal incentives for state investment, say train watchers of all stripes. They point to two successful projects that relied heavily on state funding. Amtrak recently expanded service from Chicago to downstate Illinois and St. Louis, where ridership is up about 50%, and major improvements were made to the Philadelphia-Harrisburg line.

In light of those successes, the newly Democratic-controlled House approved $50 million in matching funds for state Amtrak projects, and the Senate approved a similar program for $100 million. “We are on the edge of a revolution in thinking and the thinking of policy-makers of the future of transportation,” says Rep. James Oberstar (D., Minn.), who heads the House transportation and infrastructure committee. “And that future is filled with high-speed, reliable rail service.”& amp; amp; amp; amp; lt; br>
Now Congress is considering legislation that would allow the trains to rebuild. The Lautenberg-Lott Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act, designed to completely overhaul the system, may reach the Senate floor this session. The legislation would commit $10 billion over four years to develop high-speed, short-haul rail corridors modeled on the European city-to-city routes. They could run between Washington, D.C., and Charlotte, N.C.; Portland and Seattle; Chicago and Detroit; Miami and Jacksonville, Fla.

“We’re sick and tired, and we’re not going to take it anymore,” says Frank Lautenberg, who co-sponsored the Senate bill. “We spend money on all other means of transportation, but we already have the best thing right in our hand.”

Private-sector involvement also could boost service and revenues. Amtrak CEO Alex Kummant would like to see private, high-end luxury trains tacked onto Amtrak’s. Others suggest putting some of Amtrak’s routes out for private bidding.

“It’s not a nostalgic thing, like, ‘Let’s save the old choo-choo,’ ” insists Lou Drummeter, a sleeping-car attendant on Amtrak’s Washington-Chicago Capitol Limited for 20 years. “It’s a 21st-century answer to our transportation problems. People want an alternative.”
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Old November 8th, 2007, 11:16 AM   #227
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Acela Turned Into Rolling Billboard
7 November 2007

WASHINGTON (AP) - Perennially cash-strapped Amtrak has found a new way to generate revenue -- by turning an entire train into a moving billboard.

A train used on the Acela Express, the railroad's premium Boston-Washington service, will be wrapped in an advertisement for the History Channel's "1968 with Tom Brokaw," a two-hour special scheduled to air Dec. 9.

It's the first time an entire Amtrak train has been wrapped and the first time the technique has been used at all on the Acela, said Cliff Black, a spokesman for the railroad. He declined to say how much the History Channel was paying for the privilege.

The wrapped train, which will run up and down the northeast corridor from Nov. 12 to Dec. 9, will feature recognizable images from 1968 -- including the faces of Martin Luther King Jr., Bob Dylan, Richard Nixon, Robert F. Kennedy, Arlo Guthrie and Goldie Hawn -- said Steve Feder, president of Corporate Image Media, which helps Amtrak market advertising opportunities.

The vinyl wrap will appear on both sides of the train's two locomotives and six cars. It will be visible from the outside but won't impede the view out the windows, Amtrak said Tuesday. Posters advertising Brokaw's program will also appear inside the wrapped train.

Wrapped buses and subway cars have become a popular advertising platform in recent years, and Amtrak has done it with individual rail cars and locomotives. In one creative application, the railroad dressed a locomotive as a Toyota Tundra, making it look as if the pickup was towing the train.

Feder said Amtrak has proceeded somewhat cautiously when it comes to train wraps because it won't accept just any advertiser. The History Channel is something that would appeal to the business traveler that the Acela service is aimed at, he noted.

But Amtrak has more to worry about that in its reputation with travelers. The federally subsidized company must also take care not anger anyone on Capitol Hill with such deals.

"The History Channel has a stellar reputation for its programming," Black said. "We think this is a good fit, politically and commercially."

Black noted that Congress has encouraged Amtrak to be creative about generating revenue and thus should be pleased with the deal.
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Old November 8th, 2007, 11:45 AM   #228
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Originally Posted by Kramerica View Post
I think that they (along with the Europeans) had high-speed rail years ago in part BECAUSE we bombed the hell out of them. They had a fresh slate to start out with.
It doesn't have anything to do with being "Bombed the hell out".
It is a sign of commitment to provide the people a better faster and cleaner means of transportation with scalability to the next century.
The Tokaido Shinkansen route was a new route created from scratch completely seperated from the old tokaido line.(which is still in use today)

Now we are developing a new system, the maglev system that will usher Japan beyond the 22nd century in ultra speed public transportation that will take minimum impact from ever rising price of oil.
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Old November 11th, 2007, 05:39 AM   #229
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Tri-ring is right. It is all about commitment. There is a lack of commitment here. For the price of the Iraq boondoggle, we could've laid HSR track all the way around the United States twice over. That puts things in perspective.
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Old November 21st, 2007, 05:54 AM   #230
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AP Interview: Outgoing board chairman says Amtrak back on track
20 November 2007

WASHINGTON (AP) - Amtrak has restored its credibility and is not the financial basket case it was five years ago, the national passenger railroad's outgoing chairman said.

But David Laney, whom President Bush did not nominate for another term on the board, told The Associated Press that there are probably some in the White House who would have preferred to see Amtrak eliminated.

Laney's five-year term as a member of the board of directors expires at the end of November. At its Nov. 8 meeting, the board chose Donna McLean, a transportation consultant and a board member since July 2006, to replace him as chairman. Laney had served as chairman since 2003.

As a Bush appointee, Laney initially was greeted warily by Amtrak supporters. But the Texas lawyer said his record shows he worked with the company's interest in mind.

"I do think we've rebuilt and re-established credibility," Laney said in a telephone interview.

His one regret, he said, was Amtrak's failure to resolve a protracted labor dispute. Most Amtrak workers have been without a contract since the end of 1999. The National Mediation Board released the parties from mediation earlier this month, setting in motion a series of events that could force a deal or allow workers to strike. Laney predicted a deal would be reached early next year.

Laney joined the board just after a financial crisis that was solved only when the Department of Transportation made an emergency loan of $100 million to the railroad. Laney said he was able to put stricter financial controls in place and pointed to the reduction in the company's long-term debt from $4 billion in 2002 to less than $3.5 billion.

But Laney said he didn't know if the administration was pleased with the results.

"They don't talk to me," he said. "There's probably some people over there who think I should have wiped Amtrak off the map, but that wasn't my job."

Amtrak's biggest critics say long-distance passenger rail -- particularly trips that take more than a day -- is an anachronism and that shorter trips could be run more effectively by the private sector.

White House spokesman Scott Stanzel said he could not discuss why Laney was not reappointed because it is a personnel matter.

As for Amtrak's existence, he said: "The administration believes that if properly reformed Amtrak's intercity passenger rail system can be an important component of our nation's transportation network, particularly on our most congested intercity corridors."

Fiscal conservatives say Amtrak continues to eat up too many taxpayer dollars -- $1.3 billion last year.

The Heritage Foundation's Ron Utt said Laney made Amtrak more businesslike but that more transparency was needed and labor costs remained excessive.

Ross Capon, executive director of the National Association of Railroad Passengers, said Laney turned out to be a better chairman than most rail supporters expected.

He said Amtrak supporters were nervous when Laney considered breaking off the busy northeast corridor to be managed separately from the rest of Amtrak. But Capon said Laney allowed the idea "to die gracefully."

Laney said he looked at the northeast corridor scenarios out of a responsibility to "turn over every rock possible to find an advantage for Amtrak." But separating the corridor didn't make sense and it's doubtful anyone could run it better than Amtrak, he said.

Capon called McLean, a former assistant secretary for budget and programs at the Department of Transportation, an "unknown quantity." Her election comes as the makeup of Amtrak's board is shifting. Bush nominated three new people to the board last week to replace Laney and others.

McLean did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday. But in a news release announcing her election, McLean said Laney had improved Amtrak's business model, accountability and service.

"Amtrak's relevance in the national transportation mix has never been stronger, with record ridership and revenues being achieved for the last several fiscal years," she said.

Amtrak President Alex Kummant, hired more than a year ago, has said Amtrak's future lies frequently traveled, medium-distance routes. He said the company is reevaluating long-distance routes, which are expensive to maintain and tend to carry fewer passengers.

But Amtrak has put off making radical changes, which would likely anger members of Congress.

The railroad has taken heat for failing to restore service east of New Orleans on the Sunset Limited, which until Hurricane Katrina went from Orlando to Los Angeles. Freight service was restored on the line long ago, but Amtrak has maintained the truncated route and kept silent on its future plans

Laney confirmed what most Amtrak watchers have long suspected. "You wont see the Sunset Limited east of New Orleans, and there will be changes west," he said.

Still, Laney said some long-distance routes have potential. The Chicago-New York service, for example, could be popular if the trains were on time. For that to happen, Amtrak would need to cooperate with CSX Corp., which owns the track, to ease a bottleneck in Indiana, he said.
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Old November 24th, 2007, 03:58 AM   #231
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I'm glad to hear that Amtrak is finally starting to do so well. Now we just need to change some laws so Amtrak can go faster. Then we can raise the gas tax and expand Amtrak and finally get a real rail system in the US.
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Old December 5th, 2007, 02:58 AM   #232
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Out of curiosity has Amtrak ever considered spliting herself into a regional companies to match specific needs of the region?

I believe Amtrak trying to meet every single need from the people on the west coast to the east coast with everything in between is too cumbersome and unrealistic since the people's on NEC demand is very different from say mid-west states.

If divided, each regional company could concentrate resources to tailor the needs of the region making more efficient investments.
This may sound like backward thinking to some people but the way I see it, Amktrak trying to cater universal service just seems meaningless at this point.
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Old December 5th, 2007, 11:01 PM   #233
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I think Amtrak does that to a limited extent. I'm no expert, but don't some state governments, eg, California, provide funding to run certain services, such as the inter-city service (not commuter rail).

Splitting Amtrak into separate corporations is not going to work - it would be too complex, and would probably involve a split along state lines - you'd end up with some states prepared to fund services and others not.
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Old December 22nd, 2007, 03:05 PM   #234
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Riding high? Amtrak sees ridership rise

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071222/...Zvyuf1DUis0NUE

Riding high? Amtrak sees ridership rise

By JIM SUHR, AP Business Writer
1 hour, 27 minutes ago


ABOARD AMTRAK'S LINCOLN SERVICE - The Illinois cornfields whizzing past Mark Hardacre's view from the Amtrak cafe car had nothing on the memorable splendor the Australian had already taken in on his trans-America adventure — the Pacific Ocean so vast and blue off California's coast. The emerald green of the Northwest forests. The majesty of the snowcapped Rockies.

But the cheery man from New South Wales was breathless about seeing a couple of things he'd not seen in his three previous Amtrak treks across this nation's rails over the past two decades — Americans seeming to outnumber tourists, and far fewer empty seats.

"It's good to see the Americans starting to use their trains, because if they don't use them they'll lose them," Hardacre, 53, said recently as Amtrak click-clacked its way from St. Louis to Chicago, just one leg of his monthlong sightseeing trip with his wife, Janice.

To Amtrak, it's proof that despite vexing challenges, it's on the right track.

The money-losing service, which relies heavily on government funding, says it is riding higher, illustrated by the hundreds of thousands of additional riders flocking to expanded routes in Illinois and California. Amtrak is chugging toward its fifth-straight record year for ridership nationwide, helped by high gasoline prices and congested highways and airports that seem to have encouraged people to keep their vehicles parked.

But Amtrak's headaches remain, and the biggest is funding. The service has never been out of the red since its launch in 1971, meaning it must rely on government handouts year after year.

In trying to hash out the federal budget for next year, Congress is weighing how much U.S. taxpayers should underwrite the passenger service. Amtrak has requested $1.53 billion, nearly twice the amount the Bush Administration wants to give it. In the past, Bush has proposed giving the service nothing.

A House appropriations committee recently agreed to boost Amtrak's federal funding to $1.4 billion — a modest increase from the service's $1.3 billion in government help — while a Senate panel has endorsed spending $1.37 billion. But Bush has promised to veto any spending bills exceeding his budget requests, forcing Amtrak to slice service if the president makes good on his threat.

Amtrak says the elusiveness of stable funding holds it back, leaving it unable to commit to infrastructure improvements, get past having to use using some equipment dating back half a century or add new rail cars it says it can easily fill on some routes.

The service also continues to be nagged by travel delays, mostly tied to having to share the tracks with freight haulers that own the rails and charge Amtrak a modest fee — $90 million in the last fiscal year — for using them. With freight traffic soaring in recent years, Amtrak's on-time performance slid to an average of 68 percent last year, its worst showing since the 1970s.

"There's room for improvement, and we're looking for it," said Marc Magliari, an Amtrak spokesman.

Since taking over as Amtrak's president last September, Alex Kummant has stumped that the U.S. should embrace rail travel at a time of growing transportation needs and high oil prices. He said he's always wondered "why the Amtrak debate is so emotional and at times acrimonious."

The easy answer is money.

Amtrak has more than $3.3 billion in debt — largely tied to equipment leases. Amtrak's operating losses for 2005 topped $550 million, and its struggles along certain routes continue: The iconic Sunset Limited train between New Orleans and Los Angeles, for instance, loses 62 cents per passenger mile.

Amtrak officials are pinning their hopes on the bipartisan Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act, which would authorize $3.3 billion for operating expenses and $4.9 billion for capital improvements over the life of the bill, from 2008 to 2012.

"We can't keep asking Amtrak to operate like a business while we string the company along year to year," Sen. Trent Lott, the Mississippi Republican sponsoring the bill with Democratic Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, said in January.

The haggling over funding comes as Amtrak's ridership flourishes. Passengers for the fiscal year that ended last September numbered 24.3 million, setting a record for the fourth year in a row when comparing the same routes along the 21,000-mile system serving 500 stations in 46 states and Washington, D.C.

Between last October and March, Amtrak's riders numbered 14.3 million, up 5 percent over the previous year and sailing toward another record.

At least some of that growth might be tied to the investment by Illinois and 13 other states in short-distance corridors Amtrak otherwise wouldn't offer, essentially paying for service where they see a need.

Last fall, Amtrak added two state-financed round-trips between St. Louis and Chicago and one apiece between from Quincy and Carbondale to the Windy City. Ridership spiked by 189,823 for the first two-thirds of this fiscal year, bringing the total passenger count in the state to 670,605.

To William Rechtenwald, it's a real bargain. The journalism teacher at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale takes Amtrak several times a year to Chicago, finding the service comfortable enough, at roughly $100 round-trip cheaper than driving and tolls, and less hassle than maneuvering through congested freeways.

"I'm a fan of Amtrak," he said. "It's a much wiser choice than driving."

"Instead of turning people away, we now are able to put them on trains," Magliari said. "We've always found around the country that frequency drives ridership."

That's proven true in California. Just months after eight trains were added to the state-subsidized Amtrak service between Sacramento and the Bay Area, officials say ridership on that "Capitol Corridor" continues climbing. Ridership on the 170-mile service now with 32 trains was nearly 1.3 million in 2005, nearly triple the 460,000 passengers who rode those rails eight years ago. Administrators credit their giving passengers more options, with 16 round-trip trains a day a far cry from the three offered in 1991.

With no federal funding to call upon, the Capitol Corridor — the nation's third-busiest rail line in the Amtrak system — was built and runs solely with state and local funds.

Amtrak and its state partners are pondering more routes, if there's money to pull it off.

To the Midwest High Speed Rail Association's Rick Harnish, Amtrak's time is now.

"The era of cheap oil is over, and we have to find ways to take costs out of the system. There should be a lot more trains running, and they should be faster," he said. "If ridership is growing this strongly with the kind of delays they get, just think of what kind of response they'd get if they ran on time.

"It's not rocket science," he said. "It's just about providing a good product."

___

On the Net:

Amtrak, http://www.amtrak.com

National Association of Railroad Passengers, http://www.narprail.org

Midwest High Speed Rail Association, http://www.midwesthsr.org
..
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Old December 22nd, 2007, 08:10 PM   #235
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Amtrak needs to be destroyed and replaced with a reliable, regional, electric high-speed rail system (after the govt changes the weight requirements for trains which is absolutely ridiculous). Amtrak is probably the worst travel experience I've ever had in my life. It's absolutely dreadful!
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Old December 23rd, 2007, 04:16 AM   #236
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It is expensive, too.
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Old December 23rd, 2007, 04:25 AM   #237
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It is expensive, too.
Yeah for something like Amtrak I should be paying 12 bucks and not 60.
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Old December 24th, 2007, 03:01 PM   #238
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Amtrak

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So as opposed to trying to see what could be done differently, you condemn us to having to take buses?



A Boston-New York-DC service travening the ~800 km in between these three services in 4 hours would KILL the airline traffic in between both cities. This would not be an astronomically fast service, averaging 200 km/h (about 125 miles per hour), but that alone would be enough to ensure that highspeed works in the North East. Push the envelope and try to get that to three hours, then shuttles between the three cities would cease. Connect this high speed line to airports, and I tell you that this could be one of the most sucessful high speed lines in the world.

It does not happen because people have the mentality that you are espousing, "well we tried a half-ass attempt at it and it sucks, let's get back on the highways."

This is a very good point you made half ass trains between Boston & New York, take that it must slow down to 30 mph from Groton,CT thru New London because of a bad curve / tracks / bridge that is 100 years old.

A better solution would have been and should be a maglev train from Boston to New York which at the speeds in china 265 mph would be less then 1 hour to NYC down the middle of a rebuilt I-95. Say 6AM, 7AM 8AM non stop trains

Now think of that same system have a few keys for stops on say the 6:30 AM, 7:30Am and 8:30AM train stops at Providence, New London, New Haven, Stratford.

But solutions to these problems will never happen until we get rid of the Aholes who have no vision of the future. Most of the people making these decisions are backed by the Auto Big oil highway / airline lobbyist. Yet look at china or should I say look at it in 10-20 years when they have a high speed rail network and a first class economy while we are saying what happened to ours !!!.

Along with real high speed inter city trains, we also need hub and spoke monorails that follow along our existing highways with beltway loops that connect the spokes. ( example Boston’s RT 128 )
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Old December 24th, 2007, 03:19 PM   #239
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Can you post a link to this article from Dan Phillips ?
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Old December 24th, 2007, 03:35 PM   #240
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I recently took a trip up to Rhode Island from New Jersey (by road, yes, that's bad of me, but Amtrak was booked at the time) and it took about 3 hours and 45 minutes to complete. For some reason, it takes 3 hours and 35 minutes to go from Metropark, NJ to Providence, RI. That seems a lot longer than it should be. However, I did some math and I found how long it would take for an Acela to go from Washington, DC to Boston at a certain rate:

Averaging 75mph - 6.093 hours (current time)
Averaging 100mph - 4.570 hours
Averaging 110mph - 4.154 hours
Averaging 120mph - 3.808 hours
Averaging 125mph - 3.656 hours (standard high-speed)
Averaging 130mph - 3.515 hours
Averaging 140mph - 3.264 hours
Averaging 150mph - 3.046 hours (highest possible speed)

This means that a train averaging 125mph, the average high-speed rail speed, could complete a journey along the entire Northeast Corridor in the same time as it would currently take for the Acela to go from New York to Boston. That's kind of sad.
Now think how sad it is to see china have a maglev train that runs at 265 mph !! Now think of that same solution from NYC to Boston ( 235 miles ) do the math !! Why are we being left behind the rest of the world !! And we are wasting billions of $$ on a war just so oil compaines can have a big source of OIL !!!
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