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Old June 12th, 2012, 09:24 AM   #1461
chornedsnorkack
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Looking at Finnish schedules, the densest line is the Helsinki-Tampere line.

Which has 3 types of trains.

Hourly clockface schedule of trains taking 1:46 with same 5 stops:
6:06 continues Jyväskylä-Pieksämäki
7:06 terminates Tampere
8:06 terminates Tampere
9:06 continues Jyväskylä
10:06 continues Seinäjoki-Oulu-Rovaniemi
11:06 terminates Tampere
12:06 continues Jyväskylä
13:06 continues Seinäjoki-Oulu-Rovaniemi
14:06 continues Seinäjoki
15:06 terminates Tampere
16:06 continues Seinäjoki-Oulu
17:06 terminates Tampere
18:06 continues Pori
19:06 continues Seinäjoki
20:06 continues Jyväskylä
21:00 - exceptionally earlier, same stops, Tampere 22:52
22... - missing
23:06 - reaches Tampere as usual, 0:52.
So - the trains beyond Tampere have several hours intervals - but they still obey hourly schedule as far as Tampere.
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Old June 12th, 2012, 04:01 PM   #1462
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Quote:
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My point however is that the main competition for the train is the car, not the plane. Compare Toulouse - Bordeaux (be sure to pick a date after june 22nd) with München - Stuttgart and now ask yourself: In which city will business travellers drive their car to an appointment with then other city, and where will they take a train?
They take the car in both cases as the car is faster and cheaper.
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Old June 12th, 2012, 04:16 PM   #1463
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It'd be interesting to make the following comparison: Total population of the cities within 4 hours from Paris versus total population of the cities within 4 hours of Frankfurt. And do the same for other major cities.
Despite being disadvantaged by lying in the middle of a sparsely populated country and being denied of areas in the west due to the proximity of an ocean Paris could still win this race.
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Old June 12th, 2012, 07:56 PM   #1464
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When is HSR line from Stuttgart to Munich going to be completed?
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Old June 12th, 2012, 08:53 PM   #1465
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When is HSR line from Stuttgart to Munich going to be completed?
There isn't even a high speed line proposed. So there won't be any in the next couple of decades.
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Old June 12th, 2012, 09:09 PM   #1466
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K_ View Post

My point however is that the main competition for the train is the car, not the plane. Compare Toulouse - Bordeaux (be sure to pick a date after june 22nd) with München - Stuttgart and now ask yourself: In which city will business travellers drive their car to an appointment with then other city, and where will they take a train?

If you want to get people out of their cars frequent departures are a must.
Well, fast (few stops) high-speed lines in France, UK and other places have proven to be the biggest competitors of air, not car, travel.

Not many people traveled by car relations such as Paris-Lyon, Paris-Bruxelles, Milano-Roma (a nice, but long 5h15 purely highway driving time + stop + time spent in-and-out both cities' roads). But many people used to fly those routes and the number of flights between those city pairs have decreased substantially.

As for the bogus frequent departure argument, let's assume two scenarios of travel between cities H and J.

Scenario 1 - frequent departures on merely improved tracks
Departures every 60 minutes
Travel time 220 minutes
======================
Expected travel time for random (non-timetable checking) passenger: 0,5 * 60 + 220 = 250 minutes (4h10)

Scenario 2 - few departures on purely high-speed operation
Departures every 180 minutes
Travel time 100 minutes
=======================
Expected travel time for random (non-timetable checking) passenger: 0,5 * 180 + 100 = 190 minutes (3h10)

On the example above, you can shove off 1h of travel time even having just 1/3 of the departure frequency and reducing travel time by 55% (faster tracks, fewer intermediate stops).

It is an extreme case, but the principle holds: if you have 1-per-hour instead of 1-per-half-hour service, but you ax 30 min of the travel time, you are essentially left with the same situation for the dumb, "don't bother me with timetables ever" passenger-type who'd just spend more time idling at a station instead of traveling on a slower train.

Now if you assume only, say, half of passengers will check timetables and be able to plan accordingly, you end up with a net total aggregated travel time reduction. And this is something most people favoring network consistency over speed of everything else do miss.
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Old June 12th, 2012, 09:12 PM   #1467
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Originally Posted by flierfy View Post
There isn't even a high speed line proposed. So there won't be any in the next couple of decades.
Why?
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Old June 12th, 2012, 09:36 PM   #1468
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LtBk View Post
When is HSR line from Stuttgart to Munich going to be completed?
There will only be a new line between Stuttgart and Ulm, the Ulm - Munich will be just an upgrade of the existing line.


* The new high speed line between Stuttgart and Ulm (83.2 km) with a max speed of 250 km/h should be completed in 2019.

* The upgrade of the Ulm - Augsburg line (85m) to 200 km/h should be finished in 2015.

* Augsburg - Munich (61.9 km) was already upgraded before 2003 to 230 km/h.


The Stuttgart to Munich line was originally projected to be a high speed line in the original plans for a High Speed Network for West Germany in the 1970s. History caught up with this line in 1990 when all the money and resources were transferred to the reunification projects. But after this delay the line in a reduced form is now actually under construction.
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Old June 12th, 2012, 09:59 PM   #1469
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Is the route via Nürnberg faster for Frankfurt-München trains with that new high-speed line there?
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Old June 12th, 2012, 10:23 PM   #1470
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Current timings between Frankfurt and Munich are 3:37 via Mannheim-Stuttgart and 3:15 via Nuremberg. So yes currently the route via Nuremberg is faster, but significantly.

But that will change again when all the new lines on the route via Stuttgart are completed including the new Frankfurt - Mannheim line. Those will cut the time by almost an hour.
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Old June 13th, 2012, 01:09 AM   #1471
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Quote:
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Why?
Because of a misguided policy of transferring funds elsewhere.
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Old June 14th, 2012, 11:34 AM   #1472
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Well, fast (few stops) high-speed lines in France, UK and other places have proven to be the biggest competitors of air, not car, travel.
I don't deny that. However, a lot more people travel by car than by air, even on long distances. If you can capture a few % of the car market this results in a far bigger increase in passenger numbers than capturing the air market. I know quite a few Germans who commute every weekend from Switzerland to Germany by car, not by air, often driving 6 hours or more. The reason many give for using a car is that they can leave at a time convenient to them.
If you want to get these people as customer for your train you must offer them departures convenient to them too.

The UK is not a good example to support your assertion btw, as it has no HSR network. What it has is a fairly well integrated conventional network with good speeds on the mainlines, and robust growth in passenger numbers. Proving that in a densely populated area an incremental approach has its merits...


Quote:
Not many people traveled by car relations such as Paris-Lyon, Paris-Bruxelles, Milano-Roma (a nice, but long 5h15 purely highway driving time + stop + time spent in-and-out both cities' roads). But many people used to fly those routes and the number of flights between those city pairs have decreased substantially.
Actually before Thalys a lot of people drove. And lot of people still do. Most of the Thalys passengers are new passengers, people who wouldn't have travelled to Paris if it weren't for the frequent, convenient rail service.

Quote:
As for the bogus frequent departure argument, let's assume two scenarios of travel between cities H and J.
It's not bogus because you call it bogus...

Quote:
Scenario 1 - frequent departures on merely improved tracks
Departures every 60 minutes
Travel time 220 minutes
======================
Expected travel time for random (non-timetable checking) passenger: 0,5 * 60 + 220 = 250 minutes (4h10)

Scenario 2 - few departures on purely high-speed operation
Departures every 180 minutes
Travel time 100 minutes
=======================
Expected travel time for random (non-timetable checking) passenger: 0,5 * 180 + 100 = 190 minutes (3h10)

On the example above, you can shove off 1h of travel time even having just 1/3 of the departure frequency and reducing travel time by 55% (faster tracks, fewer intermediate stops).
Now assume that some of the passengers arrive at the station using another service. This other service has also departures every 180 minutes...
In the most extreme case the layover at the transfer station will be 180 minutes, adding 180 minutes to total travel time.
Now is it so hard to wrap your mind around the concept that coordinating services in such a way that such long layovers are avoided adds value, and thus potential revenue?
And if you have frequent services on all lines you have more possibilities to reduce layover times.

edit: BTW, if you build a dedicated HSL and then only run a train every 180 minutes over it you've just wasted a huge amount of taxpayers money with very little return...
Quote:
It is an extreme case, but the principle holds: if you have 1-per-hour instead of 1-per-half-hour service, but you ax 30 min of the travel time, you are essentially left with the same situation for the dumb, "don't bother me with timetables ever" passenger-type who'd just spend more time idling at a station instead of traveling on a slower train.
It's not about the "dumb, don't bother me with timetables" passenger. It's about someone on a schedule. Frequent departures make it easier to be able find one that fits your schedule. If your meeting ends at 1600 you want to be on the move in the direction of home as soon as possible afterwards.

Thalys runs trains from Paris to Brussel every half hour for most of the day, and offers businessmen the possibility of buying a ticket that allows them to take any one of them, without extra formalities. Now why would they do that if there was no demand or added value in that?

It's not about not having to consult a timetable. It's about offering convenience to your customers.

Quote:
Now if you assume only, say, half of passengers will check timetables and be able to plan accordingly, you end up with a net total aggregated travel time reduction. And this is something most people favoring network consistency over speed of everything else do miss.
What you seem to be consistently miss is that people don't plan in a vacuum. It's not as if they don't have anything else to do but travel.

If you have to be somewhere at 10 AM, then a fast train that gets you there at 6:30 in an hour is of less use to you than a train that gets you there at 9:50 in 1 1/2 h. Frequent departures make it easier to fit your travel in the rest of your day. I always look up train times in advance. Everybody does. But everybody likes choice.

You also seem to consistently miss that people don't travel station to station. They travel door to door. And when it comes to door-to-door travel good integrated systems win over "airline on the ground" style systems. If you want an extreme example try to find out how to get from Girona to Madrid on RENFE...

Last edited by K_; June 14th, 2012 at 11:39 AM.
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Old June 14th, 2012, 12:00 PM   #1473
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Quote:
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edit: BTW, if you build a dedicated HSL and then only run a train every 180 minutes over it you've just wasted a huge amount of taxpayers money with very little return...

It's not about the "dumb, don't bother me with timetables" passenger. It's about someone on a schedule. Frequent departures make it easier to be able find one that fits your schedule. If your meeting ends at 1600 you want to be on the move in the direction of home as soon as possible afterwards.

Thalys runs trains from Paris to Brussel every half hour for most of the day, and offers businessmen the possibility of buying a ticket that allows them to take any one of them, without extra formalities. Now why would they do that if there was no demand or added value in that?
Brussels is a branchpoint. Paris-Brussels trains can continue Brussels-Amsterdam or Brussels-Liege-Cologne.

What should be the interval of Cologne-Brussels-Paris trains?
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Old June 14th, 2012, 05:04 PM   #1474
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Brussels is a branchpoint. Paris-Brussels trains can continue Brussels-Amsterdam or Brussels-Liege-Cologne.

What should be the interval of Cologne-Brussels-Paris trains?
Currently Köln - Brussels - Paris runs almost every two hours. Additionally there are 4 ICE trains. It would be convenient if DB added a few ICE services and Thalys added an extra afternoon departure to have a hourly service throughout the day on Köln - Brussel. (and thus also on Köln - Paris).
Improving the connections in Köln would be a good idea too. And having a a few late trains to Köln. Currently the last train from Brussel to Köln is already at 19:28

Ideally the railways would cooperate to create a pan european network, with coordinated transfers in nodes like Brussel, Lille Europe, Köln,Frankfurt Flughafe etc... with departures at least every two hours, but preferably every hour. It doesn't matter that for example Paris - Köln could involve a change in Brussel every other hour, as long as convenient transfer and through ticketing is available.
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Old June 14th, 2012, 07:48 PM   #1475
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Ideally the railways would cooperate to create a pan european network, with coordinated transfers in nodes like Brussel, Lille Europe, Köln,Frankfurt Flughafe etc... with departures at least every two hours, but preferably every hour. It doesn't matter that for example Paris - Köln could involve a change in Brussel every other hour, as long as convenient transfer and through ticketing is available.
That is socialistic, Stalinist-style central planning of an entire economic sector by bureaucrats! Not only harmonizing regulations but dictating every single detail of services!

Competition is more important than micro-management and cartelization of international train services.

I suppose you are old enough to remember the dread times when ICAO and other organizations did that - with air travel - within Europe. All major airlines were state-controlled, and politics got its way to mingle with flights schedules etc.

The arguments were incredible close to yours: create a network, facilitate ticketing, "fair pricing", collaboration... and the result is that 25 years after major de-regulation there is no longer a central planning of air routes, yet - despite high oil prices -, never so many people traveled on plane in Europe. But I'm sure some people mourn open-date tickets, fixed prices that changed just twice a year, networks that "looked good" on maps with, gosh, coordinated schedules to allow transfer.

If they got out of the business of setting train routes, a periods of controlled chaos would be followed by some market-driven rationalization and unstable market dominance. Probably we'd see trains becoming like airplanes, less perks, less overpaid crew, more newcomers to the market, some "Ryanair of rails"... but ticket prices would likely plummet on more competitive routes where majority of travelers is to be found.
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Old June 14th, 2012, 08:59 PM   #1476
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Competition isn't opposed to network effects.
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Old June 15th, 2012, 12:31 AM   #1477
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Old June 15th, 2012, 12:32 AM   #1478
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post

If they got out of the business of setting train routes, a periods of controlled chaos would be followed by some market-driven rationalization and unstable market dominance. Probably we'd see trains becoming like airplanes, less perks, less overpaid crew, more newcomers to the market, some "Ryanair of rails"... but ticket prices would likely plummet on more competitive routes where majority of travelers is to be found.
Just like what happened on British buses.
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Old June 15th, 2012, 03:21 AM   #1479
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I suppose you are old enough to remember the dread times when ICAO and other organizations did that - with air travel - within Europe. All major airlines were state-controlled, and politics got its way to mingle with flights schedules etc.
Trains are not planes. It takes a long time to transfer between planes do to landing and offloading luggage. However it is easy to get off one train and onto another in under 10 mins, so I think a network with some coordination would be beneficial. Within Europe not that many people take connecting flights, especially with economy airlines, as their flights don't meet up or in the case of Ryanair, even allow through ticketing. This is because they cannot guarantee the connection. Trains however are typically more punctual, so they can use this to their advantage and serve more connecting passengers.
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Old June 15th, 2012, 09:47 AM   #1480
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist

That is socialistic, Stalinist-style central planning of an entire economic sector by bureaucrats! Not only harmonizing regulations but dictating every single detail of services!

Competition is more important than micro-management and cartelization of international train services.

I suppose you are old enough to remember the dread times when ICAO and other organizations did that - with air travel - within Europe. All major airlines were state-controlled, and politics got its way to mingle with flights schedules etc.
1) politics still mingles itself in flight schedules. A lot even. see the subsidies Ryanair gets. That the deregulated airlines got better at rent seeking is no surprise.
2) railways are very different than airlines. The cost structure is entirely different, and so are the operational constraints. A busy railway corridor cannot operate without the infrastructure manager imposing some order. RRF went to an interval schedule to make competition possible!
3) network effects are more important with trains. When the TGV from Paris to Zürich arrives in Basel there is a train to Bern and Interlaken standing opposite it. This way for almost zero incremental cost the railway manages two add two important destinations to the market served by the Lyria TGV. I find it really rather astonishing that you are against such profit maximizing behavior.
4) cooperation is not socialist. It is human. It is even capitalistic. If you take part in an software ecosystem like for example the iPhone or MS-Windows you have to play by the rules imposed by the leaders of that environment. Apple doesn't want developers operating in the iOS ecosystem to behave in a way that reduces the value to end customers. In the same vein Infrabel, RFF, RFI etc. should make sure that the participants in the railroad ecosystem behave in a way that does not reduce the value of the network to those who in the end have financed it...

If an private company owned a railway line, and it would force the companies running over it to adhere to a schedule, would that be "stalinist"?
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