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Old October 10th, 2010, 01:36 AM   #541
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Switzerland has a great integrated system, but SBB will have a hard time in the future competing on a liberalized European market. The problem is Swiss narrow-mindedness. Because of their extreme federalism, Switzerland voted to deliberately weaken SBB in order to strengthen other local, partly canton-owned railway companies. While this might serve the interests of the cantons, it will make SBB insignificant on a European scale I fear.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 02:14 AM   #542
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thun View Post
You know that you have to add more or less an hour of bus ride to get from Maplensa to Centrale FS (if you want to do a point-to-point comparision with the train), don't you?
The Malpensa Express train takes 40min to Cadorna station, too.
But you are not likely to be heading to the area near Milano Centrale. If you want a point-to-point comparison of both modes, you'd have to model a probabilistic spatial function based on destinations and origins of Zurich-Milano traffic. Just to assume people will be heading to and from the vicinities of a train station and add the time it takes to the airport is wrong as it is to assume everybody is heading to the hotel next door to the airport terminal.

For instance: in Milano, a major destination is the city fairgrounds, which is faster to reach from the airport than from the central station.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 02:27 AM   #543
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At least the new one, yes.
But if you head to any point in the city itself, you'll end up at Centrale (if you take the bus) or Cadorna (Malpensa Express)(wich is only a bit more central) and take the metro, tram or bus. If you want to travel to almost any other location in Northern Italy, you'll have to go from Malpensa to Centrale as well. If you want to go to the Como/Varese region, you can change trains at Chiasso or Como, of course, which makes it probably more convenient than waiting for luggage in the airport as well.
Finally, all that equals out the fact that you are forced to go to Centrale (or Como) by train - at least for a comparision we here are capable of doing as neither you nor I have access to exact destination data for the travellers.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 02:33 AM   #544
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Old October 10th, 2010, 11:14 AM   #545
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Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
For instance: in Milano, a major destination is the city fairgrounds, which is faster to reach from the airport than from the central station.
Milano Centrale-Rho Fiera is 15 minutes by train (but not all trains passing there also stop).

Anyway the first two trains to Milan are often full (few if no free places ==> there are people travelling standing) and also in the other direction in the evening.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 11:48 AM   #546
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
Switzerland has a great integrated system, but SBB will have a hard time in the future competing on a liberalized European market. The problem is Swiss narrow-mindedness. Because of their extreme federalism, Switzerland voted to deliberately weaken SBB in order to strengthen other local, partly canton-owned railway companies. While this might serve the interests of the cantons, it will make SBB insignificant on a European scale I fear.
What is good or bad for SBB is not really important. What matters is that the transport system is efficient. If someone else does it better than SBB, so the better if they manage to outcompete the SBB. The significance of SBB on a European scale is no concern.
And I think you shouldn't underestimate the SBB. SBB is already running regional train services in Germany that were formerly ran by DB, and they are bidding for the Piedmont services if I recall correctly.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 11:48 AM   #547
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Originally Posted by thun View Post
At least the new one, yes.
But if you head to any point in the city itself, you'll end up at Centrale (if you take the bus) or Cadorna (Malpensa Express)(wich is only a bit more central) and take the metro, tram or bus. If you want to travel to almost any other location in Northern Italy, you'll have to go from Malpensa to Centrale as well. If you want to go to the Como/Varese region, you can change trains at Chiasso or Como, of course, which makes it probably more convenient than waiting for luggage in the airport as well.
Finally, all that equals out the fact that you are forced to go to Centrale (or Como) by train - at least for a comparision we here are capable of doing as neither you nor I have access to exact destination data for the travellers.
Malpensa might be a long way off Central Milano. Travelling by Aeroplane is still quicker. And that makes the service of the SBB look even worse.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 11:53 AM   #548
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Swissair is faster between Zürich and Milano than any train the SBB has to offer. Rail is also slower from Zürich to Frankfurt/M, Paris or München.
Well, SBB doesn't offer any train to Milano. Beyond Chiasso these trains are Trenitalia trains...
Looking at domestic Swiss air routes you'll see that there are not a lot of them. Want to take a guess as to why that would be the case?

Domestic routes exist from Geneva to Zürich and from Lugano to Bern, Zürich and Geneva. Geneva Zürich is only used by people connecting with other flights, as it doesn't really save you time compared to the train. We'll see what happens with te flights to Lugano once the Gotthard base tunnel is in operation.
But even then, on routes that are served by air the train still does move significantly more people. Why would that be? :-)
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Old October 10th, 2010, 12:24 PM   #549
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What is your definition of "urban areas"? And are you sure PT accounts for >50% of all motorized trips in Switzerland, or at least of all the commute trips?
I'll get better figures when I find them, but generally speaking public transport dominates in two fields: Transport within the city area (in Zürich the modal share of the car for trips within the city itself is only about 10%) and medium and long distance commuters. (Which shows that the SBB can compete with the car on medium and long distances).
The ZVV has some interesting figures on it's website, which I can't find at the moment. I'll look them up when I come back from my appointment with the "Blümlisalp" :-)
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Old October 10th, 2010, 03:39 PM   #550
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Originally Posted by K_ View Post
Well, SBB doesn't offer any train to Milano. Beyond Chiasso these trains are Trenitalia trains...
That doesn't make it better for the SBB.
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Originally Posted by K_ View Post
Looking at domestic Swiss air routes you'll see that there are not a lot of them. Want to take a guess as to why that would be the case?

Domestic routes exist from Geneva to Zürich and from Lugano to Bern, Zürich and Geneva. Geneva Zürich is only used by people connecting with other flights, as it doesn't really save you time compared to the train. We'll see what happens with te flights to Lugano once the Gotthard base tunnel is in operation.
But even then, on routes that are served by air the train still does move significantly more people. Why would that be? :-)
The only reason for that is proximity. Being faster than air travel in a small area isn't particularly difficult. Competing with air traffic beyond these short distances is. And this is where the Swiss rail strategy fails miserably.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 10:30 PM   #551
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So, you're amitting that SBB is faster than air travel, but at the same moment complain that they aren't?!?

Let's compare Zurch HB to Milano Centrale (if you don't want to do the maths, I'll have to ):
The fastest train Zurich - Milan I found is 3:41. Flight might be half an hour, plus an hour to get from Malpensa to Milano Centrale plus 11min to get to Zurich airport which is sums up to 1:41. You should be there an hour earlier for check in (at least the airline says so) and might need half an hour to get your baggage (in the case of Malpensa: if you're lucky). Then we are talking about only 30min time advantage for the plane - of course, you still have to add some minutes to get to the bus, buy the bus ticket, wait for the bus to leave, so we're under half an hour. And if you're unlucky the bus will get stuck in a jam on the autostrada

So, where do you take the time advantage for the plane from you're claiming it has? Most travellers on that route will probably prefer the train (given similar prices), as they have to board it exactly once and get of once - much more convenient, isn't it?

If you want to argue that one is not likely to travel to the Centrale neighbourhood (although there are lots of hotels for tourists), here's the maths for a travel from Zurich HB to Milan Duomo metro station: Add roughly ten minutes for the train and subract 20min for the plane (as you would use the train to Milan and then the metro).

Still, regarding the fact that we're talking about a railway across one of the higher passes in the Alps, that's not bad at all. If the Gotthard base tunnel will be open, the train will be the faster option in any case.


We might want now go back on topic, shoudn't we?
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Last edited by thun; October 11th, 2010 at 01:37 AM.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 11:59 PM   #552
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German's NIMBYs visiting the italian comittee of Valsusa: http://www.notav.eu/article-5040--0-0.html

(the website doesn't really say anything interesting, but it's a sign that NIMBYs talk to each other)
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Old October 11th, 2010, 09:29 AM   #553
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flierfy View Post
That doesn't make it better for the SBB.

The only reason for that is proximity. Being faster than air travel in a small area isn't particularly difficult. Competing with air traffic beyond these short distances is. And this is where the Swiss rail strategy fails miserably.
But your complaint was first that SBB couldn't even compete on medium distances with cars. When we showed you that it does succesfully compete with cars on medium distances you changed to complaining about connections with neighboring countries.
And while complaining about SBB you give an example (Zürich - Milano) where SBB is doing exactly that what you claim it is not doing enough: Invest in high speed rail...
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Old October 11th, 2010, 02:06 PM   #554
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So, you're amitting that SBB is faster than air travel, but at the same moment complain that they aren't?!?
The conclusion that rail is fast on short distances that are not relevant for air traffic is common sense and no achievement of the SBB.

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Originally Posted by thun View Post
Let's compare Zurch HB to Milano Centrale (if you don't want to do the maths, I'll have to ):
The fastest train Zurich - Milan I found is 3:41. Flight might be half an hour, plus an hour to get from Malpensa to Milano Centrale plus 11min to get to Zurich airport which is sums up to 1:41. You should be there an hour earlier for check in (at least the airline says so) and might need half an hour to get your baggage (in the case of Malpensa: if you're lucky). Then we are talking about only 30min time advantage for the plane - of course, you still have to add some minutes to get to the bus, buy the bus ticket, wait for the bus to leave, so we're under half an hour. And if you're unlucky the bus will get stuck in a jam on the autostrada
It's hilarious how you add time freely on the air travel and it's still way faster than rail. I'd just like to know for what exactly you buy a bus ticket. It takes 60 min from the airport to Piazza Duomo by rail. This is as central as you can get. So no need for a bus actually. Except for time wasting, maybe.

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So, where do you take the time advantage for the plane from you're claiming it has? Most travellers on that route will probably prefer the train (given similar prices), as they have to board it exactly once and get of once - much more convenient, isn't it?
Only if you can afford the additional time it takes by rail.

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Still, regarding the fact that we're talking about a railway across one of the higher passes in the Alps, that's not bad at all. If the Gotthard base tunnel will be open, the train will be the faster option in any case.
That remains to be seen. Travel times of 2:40 h are predicted for the route through the new tunnel. That is still no impressive speed to achieve an outright victory over other transport modes. I presume that even this accelerated rail service won't displace air travel on this route completely.
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Old October 11th, 2010, 02:28 PM   #555
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But your complaint was first that SBB couldn't even compete on medium distances with cars. When we showed you that it does succesfully compete with cars on medium distances you changed to complaining about connections with neighboring countries.
It complain that the SBB is awfully slow almost everywhere. The SBB can't compete with road traffic on medium distances. Hence the great modal split for private cars.
You only showed that the SBB is faster on route to one particular mountain valley. This is, however, an exception rather than a rule.
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And while complaining about SBB you give an example (Zürich - Milano) where SBB is doing exactly that what you claim it is not doing enough: Invest in high speed rail...
Just that it isn't high speed by todays standards. Average commercial speed will hardly exceed 100 km/h on routes through the new Gotthard tunnel. Such a speed was considered high speed in the 1930s but not in the 21th century.
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Old October 11th, 2010, 03:25 PM   #556
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It complain that the SBB is awfully slow almost everywhere. The SBB can't compete with road traffic on medium distances. Hence the great modal split for private cars.
Modal share for PT is high for two classes of trafic: Inner city trafic, and medium distance city to city traffic. That is not without a reason. It proves that on medium distance trail _can_ compete with road traffic.

Quote:
You only showed that the SBB is faster on route to one particular mountain valley. This is, however, an exception rather than a rule.
I can give you other examples.

Geneve - Zürich: 2h42 minutes by train (every half hour). Distance 280km. That's an average of just above 100kph. And that is about as fast as you can get from Geneva to Zürich by car.

Quote:
Just that it isn't high speed by todays standards. Average commercial speed will hardly exceed 100 km/h on routes through the new Gotthard tunnel. Such a speed was considered high speed in the 1930s but not in the 21th century.
The new services will actually have a commercial speed that will substantially exceed 100km/h.
But in the end what counts is not vehicle speed. It's system speed. People don't travel from HST station to HST station. They travel from their front door to another front door. SBB performs better here than most railways in Europe, as witnessed by their success.
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Old October 11th, 2010, 03:30 PM   #557
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That remains to be seen. Travel times of 2:40 h are predicted for the route through the new tunnel. That is still no impressive speed to achieve an outright victory over other transport modes. I presume that even this accelerated rail service won't displace air travel on this route completely.
How can being faster than any other mode on a route not lead to dominating it?
I wouldn't be surprised if passenger numbers on the route showed double digit growths in the first decade after the opening of the tunnel.
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Old October 11th, 2010, 07:51 PM   #558
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It's hilarious how you add time freely on the air travel and it's still way faster than rail. I'd just like to know for what exactly you buy a bus ticket. It takes 60 min from the airport to Piazza Duomo by rail. This is as central as you can get. So no need for a bus actually. Except for time wasting, maybe.
You didn't show proper reading skills there. You need the bus to get to Milano Centrale, if you want to (which a lot of people want to do...). I posted two comparisions, one to Centrale, one to Duomo. The times aren't exact travel times (which I never said to be), but quite realistic assumptions, so it has to be good enough. If you want to proove that the plane is fast enough to be the better choice, feel free to post your travel schedule here.
By the way, I never said that the train was quicker, I said its quick enough to compete with the plane on that route. Why is it? Look at the next paragraph.

Quote:
Only if you can afford the additional time it takes by rail.
That's the whole point. The plane is less than half an hour faster, but you have to change the mode of transport two (to Centrale) or three (to Duomo) times, which means carrying all your baggage, search for the right direction, etc. And, of course, you'll have to queue at the check-in and at the baggage claim, and wait at the gate whereas you'll sit down exactly once in the train and stand up once to leave it (well, you still have to walk five minutes to the metro if you want to go to Duomo).
The fact remains that the plane isn't that much faster that it would equal the much higher convenience for most traveller to get onto a train and leave it. As well - if that's important to you - the train takes a scenic route and is more environment friendly. Travel time isn't everything, you know? Especially if we talk about a few minutes only.

Quote:
That remains to be seen. Travel times of 2:40 h are predicted for the route through the new tunnel. That is still no impressive speed to achieve an outright victory over other transport modes. I presume that even this accelerated rail service won't displace air travel on this route completely.
Well, travel time will be one hour less, Zurich - Milan in 2:41. That means that the train arrives in Milan when you might still be at Malpensa.
Of course it won't outplace air travel completely as people might catch an connecting flight at either Zurich or Malpensa. But it will certainly mean that for those travelling from city to city it will. So yes, I'm 100% sure that in the future it will be the fastest mode of transport.
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Last edited by thun; October 11th, 2010 at 08:05 PM.
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Old October 12th, 2010, 02:42 AM   #559
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You guys are just talking about travel time for this specific route Zurich-Milano. Think about the ticket price as well.

Standard ticket price with the EC train between both cities is 59 euro one-way. If you are a in possession of a customer card number the price can go down as low as 9,10 €, as far as I have seen in the trip planner of trenitalia.

The cheapest ticket price for a flight between both cities at Swiss International Airlines is 110 € one-way. Standard Economy fare seems to be 155 €. Add to that the cost of the transfer from Malpensa to a central location in Milan. For the Malpensa Express to Cadorna station: 11 € one-way (14,50 € roundtrip). For the bus-shuttle: 7,50 € (one-way, no round trip ticket available). I suppose the Zurich Airport is within the Zurich'spublic transport tariff area and therefore I leave these transport costs aside.

So that means in the end you pay for going from city centre to city centre:

by train: 59 € (one-way), 118 € (round trip)
by plane: at least 117,50 € (one-way), 234,50 € (round trip)

If you ask me, that's a big difference for being just a little bit faster by plane and only makes sense IMO if you have to get a connecting flight in Zurich or Malpensa.
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Old October 12th, 2010, 10:14 AM   #560
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You guys are just talking about travel time for this specific route Zurich-Milano. Think about the ticket price as well.
What does all that have to do with " Stuttgart 21 - 4.5 bn Eur for new rail hub", which is the subject matter?
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