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Old May 9th, 2008, 08:54 AM   #461
mgk920
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The Black Mesa and Lake Powell is a completely isolated railroad that runs between a coal mine and a power plant in northeastern Arizona - essentially a very interesting conveyor belt. I'm not even sure how far they are from the nearest interchanging railroad, but it is likely at least 150 km. They use electric because, well, they have a convenient source of power.

And because they are isolated, all of the stuff that they use, locomotives, cars, rails, ties, etc, have to be trucked onto the property.

Anyways, I would love to hear some real railroaders discuss the future potential of converting North American mainlines to straight electric propulsion.

Mike
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Old May 10th, 2008, 12:16 AM   #462
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Maybe electrifying the existing MBTA commuter rail routes would be good. First of all, there is less distance, as Massachusetts is a pretty small state area-wise. Second of all, it will stimulate the environmentally-conscious to take the train. Third of all, electrification means less cost for refueling each of the diesel giants that ride the rails.
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Old May 10th, 2008, 12:44 AM   #463
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not only that the providence Rail line for the MBTA could use electric trains because it runs now with the Acela and Amtrak regional.
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Old June 2nd, 2008, 01:29 PM   #464
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UNITED STATES | Railways

http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=636663

Please add your thoughts as to what we need in New England.

We need more then Amtrak.

Currently we have MBTA in Boston and Metro North in Connecticut / NYC
http://www.mbta.com/schedules_and_maps/rail/

Metro North
http://www.mta.info/mnr/html/mnrmap.htm

Last edited by grimesdr; June 2nd, 2008 at 01:42 PM.
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 02:45 PM   #465
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High Speed FedEx DHL UPS Trains

FedEx should consider high Speed Trains based on the Bombardier Talent DMU. These trains could go between major US cities via tilt type trains so as to get better speeds.

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Old June 3rd, 2008, 02:59 PM   #466
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where is that pic from?

Those trains are in use in Germany at various locations, and do their job quite fine.

But they have nothing to do with High-Speed-Trains.
What you see on this pic is a regional train for maybe a distance of 60-80 km.
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 04:25 PM   #467
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Its really unecessary to keep opening all these threads when there are already recent threads covering much the same subject. I also looked in here expecting some kind of news, but it's just a wish thread.
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 05:33 PM   #468
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elfabyanos View Post
Its really unecessary to keep opening all these threads when there are already recent threads covering much the same subject. I also looked in here expecting some kind of news, but it's just a wish thread.
Put the links to the threads, I was thinking of North America needs. Also this picture is from the Otrain in Ottawa,CA
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 09:11 PM   #469
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There need to be connections between metro north/shoreline east and the mbta(besides acela)
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Old June 4th, 2008, 03:10 AM   #470
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Otrain, at Carleton University! my Alma Mater!
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Old June 4th, 2008, 07:48 PM   #471
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Better electrify the railroads before highway electrification!
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Old June 7th, 2008, 07:31 AM   #472
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Good idea. I don't know if Deval Patrick would make it a big priority, though.
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Old June 13th, 2008, 06:36 AM   #473
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US$15 billion for Amtrak and innercity rail!

CNN link: http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/06/...ref=newssearch

I haven't closely followed Amtrak's trials and tribulations over the years, but this seems like a H U G E step forward in terms of getting the resources needed to begin upgrading our pathetic rail system!

Assuming this doesn't get vetoed, Amtrak would receive $14.9 billion over the next 5 years. The House bill would direct the US Department of Transportation to seek proposals from private companies to create a high-speed service that would take travelers from Washington to New York in two hours or less. (The Senate version of the bill doesn't contain this requirement.)

The House bill also provides $1.5 billion for Washington DC metro over the next 10 years.

It's sad to think that it took $4.00 a gallon gas to finally get us serious about re-investing in our rail infrastructure (I thought we'd been given a major wake-up call after 9-11 closed down the airports), but if that's what it takes, I won't complain every time I fill up my tank.
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Old June 13th, 2008, 12:23 PM   #474
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House overwhelmingly passes Amtrak funding bill
11 June 2008

WASHINGTON (AP) - A nearly $15 billion Amtrak bill passed the House Wednesday as lawmakers rallied around an alternative for travelers saddled with soaring gas prices.

The bipartisan bill, which passed by a veto-proof margin of 311-104, would authorize funding for the national passenger railroad over the next five years. Some of the money would go to a program of matching grants to help states set up or expand rail service.

Besides the $14.9 billion provided for Amtrak and intercity rail, an amendment to the bill would authorize $1.5 billion for Washington's Metro transit system over the next 10 years.

The White House has threatened a veto, saying the bill doesn't hold Amtrak accountable for its spending. But similar legislation has passed the Senate, also with enough support to override a veto.

"Nothing could be more fitting to bring before the Congress today, on a day when gasoline has reached $4.05 a gallon across the United States on average," said Rep. John Mica, R-Fla., a longtime Amtrak critic who teamed up with Transportation Committee Chairman James Oberstar, D-Minn., on the legislation.

Amtrak's previous authorization expired in 2002. The railroad's supporters say a new authorization will allow Amtrak to make long-range plans and take advantage of what they say is a growing appetite for passenger rail.

Unlike the Senate version, the House bill includes a requirement for the Department of Transportation to seek proposals from private companies to create a high-speed service that would take travelers from Washington to New York City in two hours or less. The idea has long been championed by Mica, who says the United States must catch up with European and Asian countries on high-speed rail travel.

Critics say the proposal would undermine Amtrak by peeling off its most valuable asset, the Northeast Corridor.

But Pennsylvania congressman Bill Shuster said provisions such as the one that open the door to private investment should help ease the concerns of fellow Republicans who have balked at supporting Amtrak.

But those provisions could complicate things when the House tries to work out a compromise bill with the Senate.

Amtrak said it was pleased that both the House and the Senate had acted.

"This reflects strong support for intercity passenger rail service, and we look forward to working with Congress as they move forward to reconcile a final authorization bill," spokesman Cliff Black said.

The Bush administration and other Amtrak critics want to see the company move toward self-sufficiency, but Amtrak supporters say passenger railroads around the globe require government subsidies and point to the large sums of federal money spent on highways.

A bid by Rep. Geoff Davis, R-Ky., to send the bill back to committee to add an alternative fuel study was rejected.

"In the areas where American budgets are being hardest hit by gas prices, consuming 16 percent of gross incomes, they have very little access to Amtrak," Davis said. "How does this bill help those Americans deal with our energy crisis?"

Amtrak's boosters say the high cost of driving has made people eager for more and better rail service.

A record 25.8 million passengers took Amtrak in the last fiscal year. The railroad expects ridership to approach 28 million this year, Black said.

May was the biggest month in Amtrak's 37-year history, with total ridership up 12 percent over last year and ticket revenue up 16 percent over last year. Black said Amtrak's marketing research indicates that about half the increase can be attributed to gas prices.

------

The bill is H.R. 6003.
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Old June 13th, 2008, 12:24 PM   #475
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FACTBOX-Amtrak gets a surge in riders

June 11 (Reuters) - As oil prices rise, many Americans are rediscovering the railroad. Amtrak saw record numbers in May when ridership rose 12.3 percent from a year earlier, and ticket sales climbed 15.6 percent, according to Amtrak data.

The following are facts about the national passenger railroad in the United States.

* Amtrak carried more than 25.8 million passengers in its fiscal year to Sept. 30, 2007, on a nationwide rail network in 46 states serving about 500 destinations on 21,000 miles (33,796 km) of routes. Wyoming, South Dakota, Alaska and Hawaii are excluded.

* In its current fiscal year to date, ridership is up 10.9 percent to 18.4 million passengers. In May, the number totaled 2,577,189, a 12.3 percent increase over May 2007. May ticket revenues, including revenue from commuter agencies, totaled $153.4 million, up 15.6 percent from a year earlier.

* The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, or Amtrak, was formed on May 1, 1971, as a quasi-public corporation to manage a basic national rail network and operate trains under contracts with the railroads. It was created by an act signed by President Richard Nixon on Oct. 30, 1970.

* According to Republicans in the U.S. Senate, Amtrak has received over $21 billion in federal tax dollars to cover operating and capital costs since 1971 and loses more than $700 million annually.

* Amtrak's total passengers equal less than 1 percent of the traveling U.S. public. In contrast, Britain, France and Germany all have passenger rail systems that account for about 6 percent to 8 percent of total annual passenger travel miles.

* Amtrak's premier service, the high-speed Acela Express, averages 82 miles per hour (132 km per hour) although it can hit 150 mph (241 kph) in parts of Rhode Island and Connecticut. By contrast, Japan, France and Germany have developed nationwide rail systems capable of speeds of 150 mph (241 kph) to 185 mph (297 kph) on dedicated tracks with sophisticated signaling systems designed for high-speed trains.

(Sources: Amtrak, the Amtrak Historical Society, U.S. Senate Republicans)
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Old June 13th, 2008, 07:46 PM   #476
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Apparently it passed with such a majority it can't be vetoed.
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Old June 14th, 2008, 06:03 PM   #477
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Indeed it did. The bills have yet to be reconciled, but that'll happen soon.

The key point here is that most of the money goes to partnership grants - a lot of it will end up going to the California High Speed Rail Project, and some more will go to state partnership projects like Amtrak Cascades (in Washington and Oregon, connecting Vancouver, BC - Seattle, WA - Portland, OR - Eugene, OR). I live in Seattle, and we've had a capital plan to improve Cascades for years, but no money to do it. With the feds offering us 80% grants, that should change.

Frank at Orphan Road found the wording:
http://www.orphanroad.com/blog/2008/06/more-amtrak-bill
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Old June 15th, 2008, 02:37 AM   #478
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New Orleans Public Belt Celebrates 100 Years

Many aren't familiar with this railway, but, it is one of the largest contributors to rail transport in the United States. Here is their website to learn much more: http://www.nopb.com/nopb/







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Old June 16th, 2008, 11:24 AM   #479
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thats good you see with gas prices up Amtrak soars with greatness.
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Old June 18th, 2008, 09:16 AM   #480
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
House overwhelmingly passes Amtrak funding bill
11 June 2008

WASHINGTON (AP) - A nearly $15 billion Amtrak bill passed the House Wednesday as lawmakers rallied around an alternative for travelers saddled with soaring gas prices.

The bipartisan bill, which passed by a veto-proof margin of 311-104, would authorize funding for the national passenger railroad over the next five years. Some of the money would go to a program of matching grants to help states set up or expand rail service.

Besides the $14.9 billion provided for Amtrak and intercity rail, an amendment to the bill would authorize $1.5 billion for Washington's Metro transit system over the next 10 years.

The White House has threatened a veto, saying the bill doesn't hold Amtrak accountable for its spending. But similar legislation has passed the Senate, also with enough support to override a veto.

"Nothing could be more fitting to bring before the Congress today, on a day when gasoline has reached $4.05 a gallon across the United States on average," said Rep. John Mica, R-Fla., a longtime Amtrak critic who teamed up with Transportation Committee Chairman James Oberstar, D-Minn., on the legislation.

Amtrak's previous authorization expired in 2002. The railroad's supporters say a new authorization will allow Amtrak to make long-range plans and take advantage of what they say is a growing appetite for passenger rail.

Unlike the Senate version, the House bill includes a requirement for the Department of Transportation to seek proposals from private companies to create a high-speed service that would take travelers from Washington to New York City in two hours or less. The idea has long been championed by Mica, who says the United States must catch up with European and Asian countries on high-speed rail travel.

Critics say the proposal would undermine Amtrak by peeling off its most valuable asset, the Northeast Corridor.

But Pennsylvania congressman Bill Shuster said provisions such as the one that open the door to private investment should help ease the concerns of fellow Republicans who have balked at supporting Amtrak.

But those provisions could complicate things when the House tries to work out a compromise bill with the Senate.

Amtrak said it was pleased that both the House and the Senate had acted.

"This reflects strong support for intercity passenger rail service, and we look forward to working with Congress as they move forward to reconcile a final authorization bill," spokesman Cliff Black said.

The Bush administration and other Amtrak critics want to see the company move toward self-sufficiency, but Amtrak supporters say passenger railroads around the globe require government subsidies and point to the large sums of federal money spent on highways.

A bid by Rep. Geoff Davis, R-Ky., to send the bill back to committee to add an alternative fuel study was rejected.

"In the areas where American budgets are being hardest hit by gas prices, consuming 16 percent of gross incomes, they have very little access to Amtrak," Davis said. "How does this bill help those Americans deal with our energy crisis?"

Amtrak's boosters say the high cost of driving has made people eager for more and better rail service.

A record 25.8 million passengers took Amtrak in the last fiscal year. The railroad expects ridership to approach 28 million this year, Black said.

May was the biggest month in Amtrak's 37-year history, with total ridership up 12 percent over last year and ticket revenue up 16 percent over last year. Black said Amtrak's marketing research indicates that about half the increase can be attributed to gas prices.

------

The bill is H.R. 6003.
Awesome awesome awesome!

Hopefully this money gets put to good use. It's about time Amtrak was actually given some. Just gotta make sure the White House doesn't screw this up.
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