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Old July 14th, 2015, 12:11 PM   #2881
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Originally Posted by Bitxofo View Post
1st line from Havanna to Bejucal, Cuba, in 1837.
2nd from Bejucal to Güines, Cuba, in 1839.
3rd from Cárdenas to Jovellanos, Cuba, in 1840.
4th from San Felipe to Batabanó, Cuba, in 1843.
5th from Rincón to San Antonio de los Baños, Cuba, in 1844.
6th from Matanzas to Juan Gualberto Gómez, Cuba, in 1845.
7th from Camagüey to Lugareño, Cuba, in 1846.
8th from Cienfuegos to Palmira, Cuba, in 1847.
9th from Juan Gualberto Gómez to Unión de Reyes, Cuba, in 1848.
10th from Güines to Unión de Reyes, Cuba, in 1848.

11th from Barcelona to Mataró, Catalonia, in 1848.
12th from Unión de Reyes to Pedro Betancourt, Cuba, in 1849.
13th from Havanna to Guanajay, Cuba, in 1849.
14th from Lugareño to Camagüey, Cuba, in 1851.
15th from Jovellanos to Colón and Pedro Betancourt, Cuba, in 1851.

16th from Madrid-Atocha to Aranjuez, Madrid, in 1851.
17th from Colón to Los Arabos, Cuba, in 1852.
18th from Gijón to Pinzales, Asturias, in 1852.
etc, etc...
Fixed.

We don't know our own history.
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Old July 14th, 2015, 02:36 PM   #2882
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Originally Posted by arctic_carlos View Post
The two most populated Canary Islands (Tenerife and Gran Canaria) really need some kind of railway in order to tackle the chronic congestion problems they endure. Of course we're talking about some kind of suburban or commuter rail, not an intercity railway.

There are projects to build railway lines in both islands, but their cost will be really high because of terrain and urbanism, and therefore many parts of the lines will have to be underground.

Majorca, also an island, has had a small railway network for more than a century. It has been recently electrified and it offers a good service.
Well yeah. Honolulu's building an elevated metro too. But the point is that isn't an apples-to-apples comparison. It's intracity rail when at the national level we're looking at intercity connections. Connections between places rather than connections within places.

And on islands like Tenerife or Oahu, that's never going to be practical by any modes other than ship or plane, a marked contrast with mainland city pairings.
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Old July 14th, 2015, 02:44 PM   #2883
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Ah, okay. So what makes a "full railway different" from a "commuter railway"?
As a matter of fact, commuter railway implies railway, that is, full railway.
I'm talking infrastructure, not services.

Metro or tram are different animals.

And yes I know, sometimes things tend to mix, but in normal conditions, to me the distinction is quite clear between what is "a railway", what is "a tramway" and what is "a metro".
It does, but if the line is fully isolated from the rest of the network, and covering a fairly small metropolitan area (e.g. 890.000 people like Tenerife) it is likely to have distinctly ”train-traim” or ”metro” features while having the functionality of a commuter train (i.e. fairly light rail vehicle with slightly lower standard frequencies). I have a difficult time explaining it, but in Romania we do have a couple of these commuter tram lines, and they also exist in places like the US (e.g. the DART line). At least that is IMO the trend of the day...
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Old July 14th, 2015, 04:52 PM   #2884
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Two lines have been projected/proposed for Tenerife, and at least one of them (tren del sur) is envisaged to be 80 km long (Santa Cruz de Tenerife - Adeje). That is certainly not a metro or a light rail, it will have full railway features.

Of course its length is not comparable to those of other lines in mainland Spain, and it will have a clear suburban/commuter rail character. But being 80 km long, it can't by no means be considered a metro or intracity railway, it will be a line connecting the island's biggest city (Santa Cruz de Tenerife) to other towns, beach resorts and the airport.
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Old July 14th, 2015, 08:00 PM   #2885
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TV-2 train Vertebrate in Las Palmas

TV-2 train Vertebrate Alexander Goicoechea (creator of the Talgo train):


Vía Libre





Unfortunately the website "Sobre trenes, tranvías y modelismo ferroviario en Canarias" does not exist, which is a shame because he had many photos and videos. I retain only this:

Quote:
El 26 de junio de 1974 se inaugura oficialmente la circulación experimental del Tren Vertebrado TV-2 desarrollado por la Sociedad Anónima de Trenes Vertebrados bajo la dirección técnica de Alejandro Goicoechea (creador del tren TALGO).
El proyecto en Las Palmas de Gran Canaria fue gestionado por la empresa Inmobiliaria Transeuropea SA, cuyo objetivo final era implantar este sistema ferroviario para conectar la capital de la Isla con el aeropuerto de Gando y la zona turística del Sur (Maspalomas). Aunque, lamentablemente, las pruebas no ofrecieron resultados positivos y el proyecto fue desechado.
El diseño del trazado en la ciudad de Las Palmas, donde se instaló el tramo experimental de 1,5 Km., fue realizado en vía única y su prolongación preveía construir los cruces en pequeñas vías dobles ubicadas en las paradas, ejecutando una doble vía en el recorrido interurbano hasta el sur de la Isla. La estructura elevada del trazado experimental estaba en la Avenida Marítima y comenzaba frente a la calle Juan XXIII.
Las obras para la instalación de la estructura elevada (vigas y pilares) comenzaron en 1972 y se prolongaron demasiado tiempo. Además, el retraso en la llegada de los módulos del tren obligaron a los promotores a solicitar varias peticiones de prórroga del permiso que les facultaba para seguir utilizando la Avenida Marítima en la demostración.
El 25 de mayo de 1974 llegaron a la Isla, en el barco Monte Berretin, los módulos que compondrían el Tren Vertebrado TV-2. Estando compuesto por un total de seis segmentos: dos extremos con cabina de conducción y cuatro módulos intermedios de aproximadamente 2,5 metros de longitud. Cada uno de los elementos disponía de ocho asientos.
El 13 de junio los ingenieros del proyecto, Jesús Carballedo del Valle y Delfín Rodríguez Villanueva, terminan los preparativos iniciales y dan comienzo a las primeras pruebas, aprovechando la ocasión para explicar a los medios de comunicación las características de este sistema ferroviario: el Tren Vertebrado TV-2 había sido construido por Siemens, todas las ruedas eran motoras y cada una llevaba su propio motor con un rendimiento de 32 Kilowatios y un peso de 90 Kg. funcionando con un "chopper" de la propia casa Siemens.
Los frenos eran de disco, como los de los automóviles, y alcanzaba una velocidad máxima de 180 Km/h. Los motores iban montados eléctricamente en serie formando grupos de tres con el resto de los grupos en paralelo, de forma que si uno había fallado solo afectaba a los otros dos de su grupo. La suspensión estaba construida mediante un sistema neumático con regulación de carga.
La primera prueba oficial se desarrolló en presencia del ingeniero promotor del proyecto, Alejandro Goicoechea, y del Director General de Transportes Terrestres el día 26 de junio, utilizando un grupo electrógeno portátil que obligó a que la circulación del Tren Vertebrado se realizara a muy poca velocidad. En pruebas posteriores ya fue posible mostrar el tren transitando según lo previsto.

Aprovechando la experiencia de Las Palmas, Goicoechea intentó implantar un Tren Vertebrado en la isla de Tenerife para cubrir el trayecto desde el centro de Santa Cruz a la playa de Las Teresitas. También, a través de los emigrantes canarios, llegó a proponer un modelo mas avanzado (TV-3) para la ciudad de Caracas en Venezuela y ya había realizado propuestas para Madrid-Getafe, Madrid-Barajas, Reus-Salou, Girona-San Felíu de Guixols o Tarrasa.
Como las pruebas no convencieron a las autoridades canarias el proyecto fue finalmente desechado, desmantelándose durante los últimos meses de 1975 y los primeros de 1976.
Independientemente de la viabilidad de este nuevo tren, su implantación en Gran Canaria siempre encontró una importante oposición como consecuencia del lugar elegido para ubicarlo: la Avenida Marítima de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Las críticas empezaron con las obras, en 1972, insistiendo en la inconveniencia de instalar la infraestructura del Tren Vertebrado en la Avenida Marítima por el fuerte impacto visual que suponían los pilares y vigas de sustentación. Esta oposición provocaba un constante goteo de críticas resaltando cualquier percance o aspecto negativo: cuando se mostro públicamente una película publicitaria la prensa señaló especialmente que el mecanismo de elevación vertical de los carriles para permitir el paso por la puerta no funcionó y se atascó, no se cumplió ninguno de los plazos legales impuestos por la Administración para realizar las pruebas demostrativas, la primera prueba ante el Director General de Transportes Terrestres no pudo ser oficial y el tren circuló a la velocidad "del paso de un hombre" sin que, además, asistieran a la misma ninguna de las autoridades locales o provinciales. Esta oposición se mantuvo hasta el desmantelamiento de las vigas y pilares.
More information (in spanish too):
http://bibwp.ulpgc.es/electra/2014/1...-gran-canaria/
https://ingenieriaenlared.wordpress....ro-goicoechea/
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Old July 17th, 2015, 06:03 AM   #2886
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arctic_carlos View Post
Two lines have been projected/proposed for Tenerife, and at least one of them (tren del sur) is envisaged to be 80 km long (Santa Cruz de Tenerife - Adeje). That is certainly not a metro or a light rail, it will have full railway features.

Of course its length is not comparable to those of other lines in mainland Spain, and it will have a clear suburban/commuter rail character. But being 80 km long, it can't by no means be considered a metro or intracity railway, it will be a line connecting the island's biggest city (Santa Cruz de Tenerife) to other towns, beach resorts and the airport.
Honestly, I don't really see that project getting far. The tram system already connects Santa Cruz and La Laguna, which are really the two main population centres. The resorts on the south side are pretty much self contained (having their own airport and whatnot) so I don't think there would be enough traffic to justify that sort of cost. Personally, I'd rather see more investment in the tram to get L3 built.
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Old July 17th, 2015, 08:18 AM   #2887
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Roquetas de Mar and El Ejido are not exactly simple suburbs of Almeria, the same way Huddersfield or Bradford are not just simple suburbs of Leeds (in a different scale, that is). Actually these two towns have had a rather impressive growth in the last decade. I wonder which will be their population in fifteen years time...
Apart from funding, the real problem for the Campo de Dalias is that to get to Almeria city, you have to pass through the coastal mountains around Aguadulce, and then the rail head is on the opposite side of the city centre. It's a massive engineering problem.

El Ejido in particular would benefit rail link though. The town's growth has been explosive, and it's the major centre for the greenhouse industry - there is a lot of freight traffic as well as commuter potential on that route. Not so sure about Roquetas as it's mostly a self-contained touristic town. That said, the whole of the Almeria rail network is a bad joke - where do you start?

Quote:
It is indeed. Note that I didn't add Gibraltar (and its airport) to the list, but if I had, the numbers would have been even more telling.
The Western Costa del Sol between Fuengirola and Algeciras needs rail so badly.
I think again geography here is a problem. The coast is very rugged, and a lot of the tourist towns won't generate much reliable year-round traffic. Gibraltar... IIRC there is actually a disused rail line that comes down to the edge of La Linea, but it'd have to go through a long tunnel under La Linea town to get to Gibraltar, and that will never happen as long as Gibraltar remains disputed. Even if it were settled, Gibraltar's population wouldn't justify that sort of cost. It'd be far easier to just reopen the existing branch with a new inter-modal station on the edge of La Linea town. Using the existing line (reopened and rehabilitated), a cercanias service between La Linea and Algeciras would probably do quite well.

Quote:
And Torrevieja too, it should have never lost the railway line it had, it was madness to close it instead of upgrading it.
Yep, since rail was already there, removing it was stupid. Thankfully I think most if not all of the route has been preserved, so re-opening it is feasible, though what kind of service pattern you could develop is questionable, given the classic Alicante-Murcia-Lorca line is congested and in desperate need of improvement, and if the ALC airport rail link happens, that's only going to get worse. The whole Murcia/Vega Baja/Elche/Alicante area needs an integrated approach to rail upgrades that focuses on local traffic rather than obsessing over AVE.
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Old July 17th, 2015, 02:28 PM   #2888
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Canary islands:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
Honestly, I don't really see that project getting far. The tram system already connects Santa Cruz and La Laguna, which are really the two main population centres. The resorts on the south side are pretty much self contained (having their own airport and whatnot) so I don't think there would be enough traffic to justify that sort of cost. Personally, I'd rather see more investment in the tram to get L3 built.
We're not discussing tramways here anyway, but the fact that these resorts are self-contained or not (which aren't, because people work there, and tourists use the airport and move around the island, among other things), has little to do with the possibility of that line being built or not.



Almeria:

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Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
Apart from funding, the real problem for the Campo de Dalias is that to get to Almeria city, you have to pass through the coastal mountains around Aguadulce, and then the rail head is on the opposite side of the city centre. It's a massive engineering problem.
No it isn't. It's a budget problem, if any. And a problem of no one in the Ministry thinking about it. Or at least, not yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
El Ejido in particular would benefit rail link though. The town's growth has been explosive, and it's the major centre for the greenhouse industry - there is a lot of freight traffic as well as commuter potential on that route. Not so sure about Roquetas as it's mostly a self-contained touristic town.
Well, having three towns of more than 50,000 inhabitants isn't that bad, in terms of potential patronage, be them self-contained or not.

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Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
That said, the whole of the Almeria rail network is a bad joke - where do you start?
In the 19th century.



Fuengirola-Marbella-La Línea (& Gibraltar)-Algeciras:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
I think again geography here is a problem. The coast is very rugged, and a lot of the tourist towns won't generate much reliable year-round traffic.
Remember that there was always a line between Malaga and Fuengirola, and that that line saw its gauge changed from metric to Iberian to manage better the number of passengers, frequency, et al. This line DOES generate reliable year-round traffic very much indeed.

Adding more passengers from Mijas, Marbella and Estepona would only increase the patronage, which is already rather high for Spanish standards, believe me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
Gibraltar... IIRC there is actually a disused rail line that comes down to the edge of La Linea, but it'd have to go through a long tunnel under La Linea town to get to Gibraltar, and that will never happen as long as Gibraltar remains disputed. Even if it were settled, Gibraltar's population wouldn't justify that sort of cost.
There has never been any thought of taking rail to Gibraltar. That would be technically complicated, and with a border in between (and that border being with the UK), things would complicate even more.

But La Linea itself (and a possible bus link to the Gibraltar border point) would be a nice idea. Only that I don't think that building a line from San Roque to La Línea would be of much use, if it were not to be extended further up the coast to Fuengirola.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
It'd be far easier to just reopen the existing branch with a new inter-modal station on the edge of La Linea town. Using the existing line (reopened and rehabilitated), a cercanias service between La Linea and Algeciras would probably do quite well.
That would be not very cost-effective if compared with the bus.



Torrevieja branch:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
Yep, since rail was already there, removing it was stupid. Thankfully I think most if not all of the route has been preserved, so re-opening it is feasible,
Not so fast. There seem to be serious environmental issues for the reopening of the old line as it was (birds and a natural park). This complicates things.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
though what kind of service pattern you could develop is questionable, given the classic Alicante-Murcia-Lorca line is congested and in desperate need of improvement, and if the ALC airport rail link happens, that's only going to get worse.
If the environmental issues were to be addressed in one way or another, the service pattern would be quite clear... if there was the right amount of rolling stock available.

Forget about the Alicante-Murcia line being congested.
It won't be by the day the Torrevieja branch would be reopened, not even if a connection to El Altet airport gets built.
Murcia-Lorca has never been congested btw.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
The whole Murcia/Vega Baja/Elche/Alicante area needs an integrated approach to rail upgrades that focuses on local traffic rather than obsessing over AVE.
Integral approach? When you're not Madrid or Barcelona or even one of the historical big-name provinces, you don't exist, basically.
The last thing you can ask the Ministry for is "integral approach". You'd be laughed at.

And keep in mind that investment in rail development in Madrid and Barcelona is poor enough.
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Old July 17th, 2015, 02:57 PM   #2889
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A short video about the Tren Vertebrado on its 1,5km long line in the Canarias:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bSUIqax8bg0
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Old July 17th, 2015, 05:41 PM   #2890
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This "Tren Vertebrado" is one of the most bizarre designs I've ever seen. Did they have switches and how switches operated? Or was it supposed to operate only in a loop?
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Old July 18th, 2015, 11:17 AM   #2891
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On July 18th, 1928, Spanish king Alfonso XIII and French president Gaston de Doumergue were on Canfranc in the international tunnel opening to traffic


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Old July 20th, 2015, 04:07 PM   #2892
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Originally Posted by 437.001 View Post
No it isn't. It's a budget problem, if any. And a problem of no one in the Ministry thinking about it. Or at least, not yet.
The two go hand in hand. Any rail link running west from Almeria is going to next a huge amount of tunelling and the complete redevelopment of Almeria station. That's a lot of engineering, and therefore a lot of money for the sake of adding one or two towns onto the end of slow and lightly used classic line. There are other potential rail projects in Almeria that could give much stronger cost/benefit performance.


Quote:
Only that I don't think that building a line from San Roque to La Línea would be of much use, if it were not to be extended further up the coast to Fuengirola.

That would be not very cost-effective if compared with the bus.
A line to La Linea already exists, it is just not currently in use. The cost of re-opening it would be negligible compared to new-build. It currently ends near a large commercial centre, with a lot of empty land around it for an interchange. This could be done on a tight budget as a light-weight system (but under the Cercanias brand/system) using something like the PPM vehicles - so no electrification, and only short pre-fabricated platforms for basic halts. If the service proves popular, it can be improved as demand dictates.


Quote:
Forget about the Alicante-Murcia line being congested.
It won't be by the day the Torrevieja branch would be reopened, not even if a connection to El Altet airport gets built.
Murcia-Lorca has never been congested btw.
IIRC, the Murcia-Alicante classic line is single track, non-electrified. Hourly service on the Cercanias, plus MD and Talgo services. If an airport line opens, that will probably need at least a half-hourly service - probably running Alicante-Airport-Elche, reversing at the airport halt. That doesn't leave a great deal of room for anything much beyond a basic hourly service for Torrevieja, unless the Murcia-Alicante line gets what it really needs and is double-tracked and electrified to improve the main cercanias service.

Alicante-Elche-Murcia really needs at least a half-hourly service, and and could easily support an additional hourly express service running through to Cartagena and/or Lorca. Torrevieja could use either hourly or half hourly (seasonal) to Alicante via Airport, and an hourly service to Murcia via Orihuela - though maintaining a simple hourly frequency to Alicante/airport would mean the Torre branch could be single track with a basic curve junction rather than a triangle. Given all the residential construction around the old alignment, I think the ecological concerns are probably surmountable, but wether or not that could cause more problems with noise is another issue.

Quote:
Integral approach? When you're not Madrid or Barcelona or even one of the historical big-name provinces, you don't exist, basically.
The last thing you can ask the Ministry for is "integral approach". You'd be laughed at.
Historically, yes, and it's one thing that needs to change, and with de-centralisation has potential to do so. If the Murcian and Alicante/Valencian governments can form a regional transport authority for the Alicante-Murcia-Cartagena triangle, they could lobby Madrid collectively for action.

In the end, it's a win-win situation. The Alicante-Murcia route is profitable to RENFE, and the EU is getting fed-up with their regional development funds going to white elephant projects. Investment in a high-demand, profitable route to improve ridership and bring social and employment benefits to the area is an all-round winner, especially if it has potential for further development in the long-term - which definitely exists (i.e. Murcia-Cartagena rail improvements, integration of FEVE services etc.)

Quote:
And keep in mind that investment in rail development in Madrid and Barcelona is poor enough.
I think it's symptomatic of the larger problem, that the AVE network is essentially cannibalizing funds from the classic system, even though the Cercanias services carry far more passengers than AVE, and the AVE relies on good local rail service to feed passengers to and from AVE terminals. I think the AVE does need investment, but right now rail projects in Spain are unbalanced, and it hurts the whole network, AVE included.
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Old July 20th, 2015, 04:13 PM   #2893
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I wonder if Spanish regional authorities should create some "new towns" near high-speed lines, building stations in the middle of nowhere on already existing lines, and then opening up for dense development around them.
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Old July 20th, 2015, 06:56 PM   #2894
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I wonder if Spanish regional authorities should create some "new towns" near high-speed lines, building stations in the middle of nowhere on already existing lines, and then opening up for dense development around them.
You must be joking...
We are still in crisis. There are abandoned new cities like Seseña, Valdeluz or others:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...-5million.html

http://verne.elpais.com/verne/2015/0...57_297346.html

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Old July 20th, 2015, 06:59 PM   #2895
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The "exact" location of Guadalajara-Yebes is not randomly chosen indeed.... and few houses have been built since then
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Old July 20th, 2015, 07:30 PM   #2896
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Almeria:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
The two go hand in hand. Any rail link running west from Almeria is going to next a huge amount of tunelling and the complete redevelopment of Almeria station. That's a lot of engineering, and therefore a lot of money for the sake of adding one or two towns onto the end of slow and lightly used classic line. There are other potential rail projects in Almeria that could give much stronger cost/benefit performance.
I was not speaking about any deadline at all, or of any mode of rail service at all. Currently there are no plans to take rail there.

So it's likely that the day those plans actually started, Almeria would then be enjoying a much improved rail service after the opening of Pulpi-Almeria.

This would put taking the rail to Roquetas de Mar and El Ejido in a totally different perspective.

And then, only then, maybe some plan could take shape... or not.



(Malaga-)Fuengirola-Marbella-Estepona-La Línea/Gibraltar-Algeciras:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
A line to La Linea already exists, it is just not currently in use. The cost of re-opening it would be negligible compared to new-build. It currently ends near a large commercial centre, with a lot of empty land around it for an interchange. This could be done on a tight budget as a light-weight system (but under the Cercanias brand/system) using something like the PPM vehicles - so no electrification, and only short pre-fabricated platforms for basic halts. If the service proves popular, it can be improved as demand dictates.
Won't be the case any time soon at all. The only plan (which is only at the very earliest stages) is to take rail from Fuengirola to Marbella, and then maybe someday Estepona, and then only maybe even La Linea and Algeciras.



Murcia/Alicante (& Torrevieja, Cartagena, et al):

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
IIRC, the Murcia-Alicante classic line is single track, non-electrified. Hourly service on the Cercanias, plus MD and Talgo services. If an airport line opens, that will probably need at least a half-hourly service - probably running Alicante-Airport-Elche, reversing at the airport halt. That doesn't leave a great deal of room for anything much beyond a basic hourly service for Torrevieja, unless the Murcia-Alicante line gets what it really needs and is double-tracked and electrified to improve the main cercanias service.

Alicante-Elche-Murcia really needs at least a half-hourly service, and and could easily support an additional hourly express service running through to Cartagena and/or Lorca.
Well... things have changed a bit, haven't they?

Currently, Orihuela station has already been put underground, and the line, from a point between San Isidro-Albatera-Catral and Crevillente stations (where the pure HSL to Madrid will end) till Murcia is being upgraded as part of the HSL Project, which includes double-tracking and seemingly gauge change.

The missing section between San Isidro and Alicante through Elche-Parque and San Gabriel will be left untouched, although perhaps it could have the gauge changed, too.

The plans for a new access to the airport (which would be a through line anyway, implying the closure of the current line through San Gabriel) have been put on hold.

Besides, service already is half-hourly at the peaks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
Torrevieja could use either hourly or half hourly (seasonal) to Alicante via Airport, and an hourly service to Murcia via Orihuela - though maintaining a simple hourly frequency to Alicante/airport would mean the Torre branch could be single track with a basic curve junction rather than a triangle. Given all the residential construction around the old alignment, I think the ecological concerns are probably surmountable, but wether or not that could cause more problems with noise is another issue.
Sit and wait, then. Like 20 years or so, at least.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
Historically, yes, and it's one thing that needs to change, and with de-centralisation has potential to do so. If the Murcian and Alicante/Valencian governments can form a regional transport authority for the Alicante-Murcia-Cartagena triangle, they could lobby Madrid collectively for action.

In the end, it's a win-win situation. The Alicante-Murcia route is profitable to RENFE, [...]
Isn't. And won't ever be unless properly tolled (which would mean losing passengers anyway, so it's a vicious circle).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
[...] and the EU is getting fed-up with their regional development funds going to white elephant projects. Investment in a high-demand, profitable route to improve ridership and bring social and employment benefits to the area is an all-round winner, especially if it has potential for further development in the long-term - which definitely exists (i.e. Murcia-Cartagena rail improvements, integration of FEVE services etc.)
Murcia-Cartagena will be electrified more or less soon, but just for HSR services.
There are no plans whatsoever to develop regional or commuter rail there, only press articles... sometimes.



Overview:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
I think it's symptomatic of the larger problem, that the AVE network is essentially cannibalizing funds from the classic system, even though the Cercanias services carry far more passengers than AVE, and the AVE relies on good local rail service to feed passengers to and from AVE terminals. I think the AVE does need investment, but right now rail projects in Spain are unbalanced, and it hurts the whole network, AVE included.
Not if you think about how much subventioned regional and commuter rail are.

AVE/LD is profitable and doesn't get subventions. The only rail service in Spain that is profitable and gets no subventions. Every other rail service in the country isn't even though it is subventioned.

And when you think about roads in Spain (and that buses are good too, and all private), and just how little rail-friendly Spain is... no, I don't think there will be many major classic rail improvements for regional or commuter rail, even less outside Barcelona or Madrid.
The Minister even said "nothing until 2024 at least".

Which could imply some closures too.

I even read some engineer say that only HSR should be kept, the rest being best replaced by buses.

Large parts of Spain get subventioned public regional railway service that can't ever be profitable because those areas are largely unpopulated.

Other parts of Spain, which are much more populated, get a bad or no regional or commuter rail service, but in most cases it is unwanted in the town centres (unless it is put underground, and sometimes not even that). There are serious cases of nimby-ism, which have flourished very recently but are unlikely to disappear.

In my area for instance, three to five town-centre stations will be closed and relocated outside the towns, in an area totalling a permanent population of over 70,000 inhabitants and LOADS more tourists, thus, the area will see regional railway greatly worsened.
Why? Majors, neighbours, the regional government, the Ministry (and bus companies), and even the environmentalists, don't want to keep these stations, since they make Long Distance trains slower, trains run through the inside of the towns, murdering pedestrians (it is said that sometimes trains even leave the tracks to blood-thirstily hunt and shred some unaware local gran or even a Belgian teenager), private bus companies make less money than they could, and besides there is a new free motorway ready to take the loss of regional rail passengers. They even refuse to put underground a part of the line.

In other words: you want (long-distance) railway, then you pay for it (and you get a top AVE or similar). You can't pay (or you want regional rail or even commuter rail), then you better go get a bus.
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Old July 23rd, 2015, 07:10 AM   #2897
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
I wonder if Spanish regional authorities should create some "new towns" near high-speed lines, building stations in the middle of nowhere on already existing lines, and then opening up for dense development around them.
Given the current housing glut, I can't see it happening in the short-term. In the longer term, since housing in Spain is usually dense anyway (even by European standards) then I imagine something like this will happen eventually. The Ciudad Real airport scheme actually involved something vaguely along these lines. It was originally going to have an AVE station and a very large business/industrial park (and I believe, eventually, housing) surrounding it.
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Old July 29th, 2015, 01:59 PM   #2898
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Originally Posted by 437.001 View Post
Almeria:

Not if you think about how much subventioned regional and commuter rail are.

AVE/LD is profitable and doesn't get subventions. The only rail service in Spain that is profitable and gets no subventions. Every other rail service in the country isn't even though it is subventioned.
I'm not so sure about that. The profitability of AVE is largely an accounting fiction, as ADIF-AV has tens of billions of debt from LAV construction, which doesn't show up on RENFEs AVE balance sheets. More problematic is that ADIF-AV also has massive *operational* losses. Track fees for the LAV lines only cover about 50% of operational costs. At the end of the day, AVE services are actually a bigger financial drain that classic services which can share already existing infrastructure with a wide array of services (cercanias, MD, long distance, freight, alvia etc.), which have become underfunded to the point of danger.

In addition, quite separately from the issue of subsidies (which are a sensible economic tool if the service provides wider socio-economic benefits to the region) is that of comparative cost-benefit analysis that takes into account both those wider benefits (i.e. access to employment, education etc.), as well as the opportunity costs (i.e. lost investment in regional/commuter rail and loss of any benefits it would have brought).

Finally there is the issue that the classic service is a self-inflicted subsidy black hole. The classic line timetables and connections have been left mostly unchanged despite changing ridership, where even simple changes could encourage far greater use, and thus actually save money by generating more revenue. At the same time, investing in light-weight railbus type rolling-stock on low-traffic routes (i.e. Lorca-Aguilas, Xativa-Alcoi) to replace heavy DMUs would cut operational costs significantly for both Renfe and ADIF - and is a cheap way to free up more valuable heavier rolling stock.

Quote:
And when you think about roads in Spain (and that buses are good too, and all private), and just how little rail-friendly Spain is... no, I don't think there will be many major classic rail improvements for regional or commuter rail, even less outside Barcelona or Madrid.
The Minister even said "nothing until 2024 at least".

Which could imply some closures too.

I even read some engineer say that only HSR should be kept, the rest being best replaced by buses.
I'm not suggesting there will be classic investment. Actually I suspect the government is focused to the point of obsession on AVE. Rather, I wanted to highlight that the current policy toward rail is unbalanced, short-sighted, and ultimately self-defeating to the extent that even the auditors are getting concerned about the financial vulnerability and opportunity costs of the AVE. I'm also saddened that a lot of investment has been made, but that the population hasn't received much "bang for their buck". In a time of high unemployment, investment in local rail links would have brought much greater benefits in areas suffering most, for much lower cost.


Quote:
In my area for instance, three to five town-centre stations will be closed and relocated outside the towns, in an area totalling a permanent population of over 70,000 inhabitants and LOADS more tourists, thus, the area will see regional railway greatly worsened.
Why? Majors, neighbours, the regional government, the Ministry (and bus companies), and even the environmentalists, don't want to keep these stations, since they make Long Distance trains slower, trains run through the inside of the towns, murdering pedestrians (it is said that sometimes trains even leave the tracks to blood-thirstily hunt and shred some unaware local gran or even a Belgian teenager), private bus companies make less money than they could, and besides there is a new free motorway ready to take the loss of regional rail passengers. They even refuse to put underground a part of the line.
lol that really made me laugh! But yeah, I've seen that kind of mentality as well! But then with local rail service as bad as it is, it is understandable. Would I really want the noise and grime of 30 year old heavy 4-car DMUs running past my home if the service was so infrequent / badly timed as to be useless? Gods, no - but if it were modern, light-weight/quiet trains running frequently enough to be useful for getting to work/uni/whatever, I might be convinced it'd be worth it.

Quote:
In other words: you want (long-distance) railway, then you pay for it (and you get a top AVE or similar). You can't pay (or you want regional rail or even commuter rail), then you better go get a bus.
Yeah, sadly I think that'd the mentality. Yay for traffic pollution! (and in 10 years time... autovias become parking lots that occasionally move)
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Old July 29th, 2015, 09:36 PM   #2899
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ADIF-HS, Court of Auditors, access charges coverage

It seems that you have read the media, and that's what they say, based on reports from a highway concessionaire and what it says about a Court of Auditors. But you have to go to the sources, and the Court of Auditors says:

Quote:
If you delete this analysis the effect of the amortization and financial costs, the coverage would have amply exceeded 100% in all lines except Madrid-Valladolid and Madrid-Levante, with a degree of coverage 54% and 89%, respectively; and the difference between the Madrid-Seville and Madrid-Barcelona line is reduced significantly, introducing the first 193% coverage and 158% second. (page 36)
Madrid-Valladolid has 20% of tunnels, and simply without it would not exist (or lose a lot of money) the Alvia trains throughout all the Spanish northwest.

ADIF-HS access charges joined by 396.16 M € in 2013 (page 28) including stations and others, their total expenditures less amortizations were 270.707 M € and income from access charges (without stations) were 334.088 M € (page 72), which is a access charges over all expenditures less amortizations coverage of 123%.

The breakdown by lines is on page 74; these are the accounts:

Maintenance, traffic and safety costs / Access charges / Coverage:
Sevilla / 45.902 / 91.819 / 200%
Toledo / 2.458 / 4.042 / 164%
Barcelona / 89.799 / 146.792 / 163%
Malaga / 24.009 / 29.836 / 124%
Valencia and Alicante/ 57.319 / 52.983 / 92%
Valladolid / 28.325 / 15.730 / 56%
Total: / 270.707 / 334.088 / 123%

Instead, coverage of access charges on the conventional network is not suitable for sensitive people. Better not read it.

Moreover, there is a report of the French Court of Auditors with a picture of the performance of LGVs on your page 95, I do not know what they have in mind those results.

In Spain we have a saying for this, but as I do not have a sufficient level of English to translate it, I keep it.

Last edited by Gusiluz; July 30th, 2015 at 12:06 PM. Reason: Links
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Old July 30th, 2015, 04:40 AM   #2900
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I'd really trust Gusiluz. He is an insider, and although his English isn't top notch, you do want to pay attention to what he says.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gusiluz View Post
Maintenance, traffic and safety costs / Access charges / Coverage:
Sevilla / 45.902 / 91.819 / 200%
Toledo / 2.458 / 4.042 / 164%
Barcelona / 89.799 / 146.792 / 163%
Malaga / 24.009 / 29.836 / 124%
Levante / 57.319 / 52.983 / 92%
Valladolid / 28.325 / 15.730 / 56%
Total: / 270.707 / 334.088 / 123%

Instead, coverage of access charges on the conventional network is not suitable for sensitive people. Better not read it.

Note: the "Levante" HSL is the Valencia + Alicante one (to be expanded from Alicante to Murcia, later Lorca and Almeria, and also from Valencia to Alicante).

In addition, I wouldn't forget that the one Spanish HSL that doesn't cover costs is the Valladolid one, that is, the one that's going to be expanded the most (ie, improvement of travel times and increase of passengers in the years to come).

And yes, as Gusiluz says, most of the classic lines have bad or very bad situations when it comes to covering costs.

This is largely due to geographical and demographical reasons.

Sometimes, seen from the outside, Spain might seem quite simple to understand. It isn't, at all.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
I'm not so sure about that. The profitability of AVE is largely an accounting fiction, as ADIF-AV has tens of billions of debt from LAV construction, which doesn't show up on RENFEs AVE balance sheets. More problematic is that ADIF-AV also has massive *operational* losses. Track fees for the LAV lines only cover about 50% of operational costs.
As you can see, Gusiluz just showed how inaccurate that is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
At the end of the day, AVE services are actually a bigger financial drain that classic services which can share already existing infrastructure with a wide array of services (cercanias, MD, long distance, freight, alvia etc.), which have become underfunded to the point of danger.
What many people fail to see is that they would be even more in danger had the HSR not been developed...

Many of these lines run across empty, unpopulated countryside, and many stations are far away from any half-sizeable town or village.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
In addition, quite separately from the issue of subsidies (which are a sensible economic tool if the service provides wider socio-economic benefits to the region) is that of comparative cost-benefit analysis that takes into account both those wider benefits (i.e. access to employment, education etc.), as well as the opportunity costs (i.e. lost investment in regional/commuter rail and loss of any benefits it would have brought).

Finally there is the issue that the classic service is a self-inflicted subsidy black hole. The classic line timetables and connections have been left mostly unchanged despite changing ridership, where even simple changes could encourage far greater use, and thus actually save money by generating more revenue. At the same time, investing in light-weight railbus type rolling-stock on low-traffic routes (i.e. Lorca-Aguilas, Xativa-Alcoi) to replace heavy DMUs would cut operational costs significantly for both Renfe and ADIF - and is a cheap way to free up more valuable heavier rolling stock.
Lorca-Aguilas and Xativa-Alcoy are not exactly the two best cases to explain how a classic line could attract more new passengers by being connected to a HSL.

Lorca-Aguilas, because more than half of that line will be upgraded to HSL standards, leaving only the short spur between Pulpi and Aguilas, which will greatly benefit of the upgrade and will also see long distance services, hence I strongly suspect that EMUs will still be needed (because it will very likely be electrified).

Xativa-Alcoy is quite a different animal. That line is in terrible state. Loads should be invested to upgrade it. If the line isn't closed in the meantime, parts of it, if (heavily) upgraded, could be electrified in the mid to long term and join the Cercanías Valencia network.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
I'm not suggesting there will be classic investment. Actually I suspect the government is focused to the point of obsession on AVE. Rather, I wanted to highlight that the current policy toward rail is unbalanced, short-sighted, and ultimately self-defeating to the extent that even the auditors are getting concerned about the financial vulnerability and opportunity costs of the AVE. I'm also saddened that a lot of investment has been made, but that the population hasn't received much "bang for their buck". In a time of high unemployment, investment in local rail links would have brought much greater benefits in areas suffering most, for much lower cost.
Or would they? Most of the local rail needs are already covered, and those that aren't would need massive investments (be it upgrades, or reconstructions/reopenings, or entirely new lines), to the point of one wondering about its priority in opposition to long-distance services.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
lol that really made me laugh! But yeah, I've seen that kind of mentality as well! But then with local rail service as bad as it is, it is understandable. Would I really want the noise and grime of 30 year old heavy 4-car DMUs running past my home if the service was so infrequent / badly timed as to be useless? Gods, no - but if it were modern, light-weight/quiet trains running frequently enough to be useful for getting to work/uni/whatever, I might be convinced it'd be worth it.
Actually the passenger trains are not noisy, even the 30 year-old ones.
It's the freight trains that are annoying, to a degree.

But they do have fangs, neighbours say so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neb81 View Post
Yeah, sadly I think that'd the mentality. Yay for traffic pollution! (and in 10 years time... autovias become parking lots that occasionally move)
Actually some of them are even opposed to new motorways. They are that NIMBY.
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