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Old January 28th, 2009, 09:09 PM   #61
hans280
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sotavento
You are completelly wrong in your assessment of the Portuguese/Sapnish bilateral relations ... it was actually the spanish that BEGGED to the portuguese to allow a connection to our huge (and almost totally underused) deep sea harbours and cities.
Really??? I confess that I based my assumption (NOT assessment, please re-read my text...) on the French reality, where the Spanish demand for a couple of high-speed connections (Bordeaux-Basque Country; Barcelona-Perpignan) has been... greeted with dismay, because the French want to link with the core of Europe rather than the coast of Iberia.

Does this mean that we're speaking mixed-traffic, though? You're speaking of deep sea harbours and I don't suppose the purpose of the new HSLs is to transport sailors on leave. In my book railway lines that allow the "polluding presence" of freight trains do not qualify as HSLs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sotavento
There is no distinction between an upgraded 200km/h railway and a "over" 250km/h "new" HSL???
Well, sotavento, you must admit that there's not so much movement on the, shall we say, "truly highspeed" cross-border front in central and eastern Europe. You have a 300 km/h line between France and Belgium, a Chunnel connection that for other reasons is characterised as "high speed" and very soon you'll have 300+ km/h lines between France and Spain and between Belgium and the Netherlands.

Care to tell me the name of one cross-border line into, or out of, Germany where trains can travel at even a measly 250 km/h? I think not. The Germans drag their feet and the Poles suffer.
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Old January 28th, 2009, 09:46 PM   #62
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The Germans drag their feet and the Poles suffer.
if the germans judge (rightly so) that there is not enough need to justify 300++ dedicated line, what makes you think there is enough demand in eastern europe?

come back when all of eastern europe has a gdp/capita above 25000 EUR and than we'll talk

but even then, it will not be feasible to build such a line in the slovenian alps or in rocky croatia

hungary would be an ideal place but it has such a crappy railway infrastructure that even 120 kph _average_ is a dream, even on main lines


bottomline is, 250 kph is good enough, even in japan they only have one section where they can go above 300, the rest of the (newly) built network is around 260-270

europe is much smaller, and it makes more sense to build 250 kph which can be shared with freight and local trains
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Old January 28th, 2009, 11:07 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by gramercy
if the germans judge (rightly so) that there is not enough need to justify 300++ dedicated line, what makes you think there is enough demand in eastern europe?
What does that have to do with anything? When the French constructed their latest HSL Paris-Strasbourg (...er, OK, not quite to Strasbourg yet) the Director General of SNCF, Louis Gallois, himself publicly said that economically it makes no sense whatsoever - but, for political reasons, the railways must connect north eastern France with Paris within the two-hours range. This is NOT about economics it's about - in the words of Francois Mitterand - "having a vision for Europe and being prepared to pursue it regardless of cost". So... what's your excuse? A petty accountant's mentality?

OK, seriously now: the Dutch and the Belgians, and the Spanish and the Portuguese, and the French and the Brits have all agreed on a need to connect fast across borders. So, you argue that it makes no sense for Germany to connect fast with Poznan or Prague. Perhaps you're right. But... it makes the same sense - other things equal - for the Germans to trace fast from Cologne to the Belgian border as it makes for the Belgians to trace fast from Liege to the German border. And it makes the same sense - other things equal - for the Germans to trace fast from Frankfurt to Saarbruecken as it makes for the French to trace fast from Paris to Saarbruecken. But alas...

...Die Nachbaren sollen doch gefaelligst zahlen, and in the mean time the petty Germans prefer to spend their money on commuter lines between Krefeld and Uerdingen rather than on proper European projects. Sic Romae Fit...

Quote:
Originally Posted by gramercy
but even then, it will not be feasible to build such a line in the slovenian alps or in rocky croatia.
That's factually wrong. Spain is much more mountainous than "rocky Croatia" - and the Spaniards were the first in Europe to elevate 350 km/h to the new national standard.

Last edited by hans280; January 28th, 2009 at 11:18 PM.
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Old January 28th, 2009, 11:31 PM   #64
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What does that have to do with anything? When the French constructed their latest HSL Paris-Strasbourg (...er, OK, not quite to Strasbourg yet) the Director General of SNCF, Louis Gallois, himself publicly said that economically it makes no sense whatsoever - but, for political reasons, the railways must connect north eastern France with Paris within the two-hours range. This is NOT about economics it's about - in the words of Francois Mitterand - "having a vision for Europe and being prepared to pursue it regardless of cost". So... what's your excuse? A petty accountant's mentality?
the channel tunnel was built 100 % with private money, two decades have gone by and it is still not turning a profit

politicians (and apparently you) are cavalier with public money, i however prefer _my_ tax money spent in an economically feasible manner

thats "my excuse"


Quote:
That's factually wrong. Spain is much more mountainous than "rocky Croatia" - and the Spaniards were the first in Europe to elevate 350 km/h to the new national standard.
YOU are factually wrong

i did NOT say its impossible, i said it would be unfeasible
and there is no train that runs 350 in spain today


----

switzerland has arguably the best railroad infrastructure in the world and it is located ideally for high speed inter-european corridors

yet there isn't a single km that runs above 200 kph at the moment, and in the distant future they will only go up to 250 inside the tunnels and 200 on the east-west corridor, and perhaps 200 in valais

AT THE SAME TIME, 100 % of their network has electrification, they have most of their main lines capable of 140-160 kph, even single track ones
AT THE SAME TIME they have a very young fleet of trains that can actually do these "measily" speeds even on lines like Winterthur-St. Gallen full of twists and turns
AT THE SAME TIME they are running a programme to modernize over 600 small stops, providing a 21st century environment for travellers

germany and austraia are doing the same thing, they are spending a lot of money on smaller lines
germany has a huge amount of their main lines going at 160-200 kph, which servers the local destinations, something they have to consider since they have a _very_ different configuration of settlements, not to mention almost 3x the population density of france and spain


look at some remote french spanish italian or for that matter british lines
lines which serve small and medium sized towns
most of them have no electrification, no speed above 120-140 kph, not to mention the run-down rolling stock (look at some southern italian lines serving towns with populations above 100.000 ppl and with trainsets older than 40 years. its a disgrace)




i wouldnt mind being able to travel from warsaw to palermo 360 kph, but does it make sense when southern italy has a problem with sewage and garbage in the 21st century???
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Old January 29th, 2009, 09:53 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by hans280 View Post
Really??? I confess that I based my assumption (NOT assessment, please re-read my text...) on the French reality, where the Spanish demand for a couple of high-speed connections (Bordeaux-Basque Country; Barcelona-Perpignan) has been... greeted with dismay, because the French want to link with the core of Europe rather than the coast of Iberia.

Does this mean that we're speaking mixed-traffic, though? You're speaking of deep sea harbours and I don't suppose the purpose of the new HSLs is to transport sailors on leave. In my book railway lines that allow the "polluding presence" of freight trains do not qualify as HSLs.
As I told you time and time again ... you don't have all the books in your library.

In fact the Lisboa-Madrid "corridor" will be a double "mixed-traffic" one ...

- they are going to build a new major airport near poceirão
- they are building a 9km long 4 track (2 for LAV + 2 for conventional use) bridge out of lisboa
- From Lisboa to Poceirão there will be 2 conventional railways and 1 HSL (all double track)
- from Poceirão to the border in Badajoz there will be a 350km/h HSL and a conventional railway ... for 1/2 their lenght they will share the same path (3 or 4 tracks depending on the section)
- the 350km/h HSL tracks are indeed "mixed-traffic" themselves ... so lets just wait and see what cames out of it

French have LaPoste
Plans over here are for express containers and other light cargo trains to use the HSL

And by the way ... one of the earlier motives for a dedicated (UIC gauge) rail link to central europe was precisely that Autoeuropa (a VW factory south of lisboa) has a rolling-carrousell of trucks full with auto-parts running 24/7 all year long ... going all the way from here to ... poland.

Quote:
Well, sotavento, you must admit that there's not so much movement on the, shall we say, "truly highspeed" cross-border front in central and eastern Europe. You have a 300 km/h line between France and Belgium, a Chunnel connection that for other reasons is characterised as "high speed" and very soon you'll have 300+ km/h lines between France and Spain and between Belgium and the Netherlands.

Care to tell me the name of one cross-border line into, or out of, Germany where trains can travel at even a measly 250 km/h? I think not. The Germans drag their feet and the Poles suffer.
One of the problems with european interoperability is that old countries don't forget easily about the old wars.

But nonetheless there are plenty o Eurocity and other international express trains.

and remember ... usually the terrains in the borders are rough or the old route allows speeds as high as 140/160 km/h on both sides ... so the need for a "new" link wasn't there in the first place.

No comparison with the portuguese/spanish (too many sub-par connections and/or even missing) and especiallynothing like spain/france gauge gap.

For example our "good" connection to Spain is at 160km/h for half its lenght and the other half is a large sucession of metalic bridges and tunnels (speed average of 80/100 km/h for km and km) ... it was renewed in 1995 ... precisely folowing its renewall it was decided to invest in tilting technology ... that railway (some 300km long) could be at speeds of 250km/h nowadays ... but it isn't.

that Warsaw-Berlin-Hamburg seems like a prime candidate for tilting trains ... could use the "old" infraestructure to its limits ... and then some more.

Except for some "plains" in some areas where the "old" rail infraestructure is decrepit or even abandoned but nonetheless allows for good speeds if renewed right (like most of the UK countryside for example) new HSL construction is not that important ...

The Spanish only built their feeder railways to over 250km/h (linking major urban areas to each other) ... the rest gets 200/250 km/h
The french do the same ...

Berlin-Warsaw is roughly the same distance that Lisboa-Madrid ... over here it completely flat land and no urban development at all (5 or 6 major cities in between but nonetheless they are all that exists) ... go check on what lays between Berlin (wich is actuall only 80km away from the polish border) and Warsaw.
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Old January 29th, 2009, 02:16 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gramercy
the channel tunnel was built 100 % with private money, two decades have gone by and it is still not turning a profit

politicians (and apparently you) are cavalier with public money, i however prefer _my_ tax money spent in an economically feasible manner
Two observations: (1) the highway between Stockholm and Gothenburg was built - what? - four decades ago and it is still not turning a profit. It wasn't built to turn a profit, it was built to yield societal benefits. I am personally sorry that so many private investors were bamboozled into paying for the Chunnel the main benefits of which are societal and should have been financed accordingly; (2) I am used to living in a high-spending and high-taxing country. It's OK, I've gotten used to pay at least 55% tax. However, I'd much rather pay all this money into a modern infrastructure than to the guys who stand drinking beer all day down by my local supermarket, the "unemployed" single mothers who never have and never will work, people who retire at 51 because of "back problems"... In the words of your great hero (?) Margaret Thatcher, I WANT MY MONEY BACK!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by gramercy
switzerland has arguably the best railroad infrastructure in the world and it is located ideally for high speed inter-european corridors

yet there isn't a single km that runs above 200 kph at the moment, and in the distant future they will only go up to 250 inside the tunnels and 200 on the east-west corridor, and perhaps 200 in valais.
Before you make Switzerland the hero of your story, please consider that they have some of the slowest intercity trains in the whole of western Europe (measured as average speeds over distances of 100, 200 and 300 km). OK, this is partly because of their topography, but it also reflects the fact that the trains stop at every "Milchkanne" and, not least, a very conservative time schedule in a country where people totally freak out over delays.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gramercy
i wouldnt mind being able to travel from warsaw to palermo 360 kph, but does it make sense when southern italy has a problem with sewage and garbage in the 21st century???
I'd very much suggest a "French solution" for the Mezzogiorno: cities and regions that are persistent net recipients of subsidies from the rest of the country get starved of infrastructure so as to induce people to move to parts of the country that ARE economically viable.

Returning to the Polish issue, my point is about reciprocity. I find it shameful to see one of the richest countries in Europe (Germany now, not Italy! ) turn its back on all neighbours because the roads of Sachsen and the railways of Westphalen are more important that knitting the European construction together. Only last week I sat in a Thalys rattling through the outskirts of Aachen - commuter rails, and old at that - at about 60 km/h. Some passengers were eyeing their watches nervously, noting an already significant delay and asking the Belgian train steward if they were to miss their connections in Paris. Don't worry, he responded. Delays that's on these overcrowded tracks. As soon as we're south of Brussels the French will win most of the time back. Well...

...had I been German I would have hanged myself.
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Old January 29th, 2009, 02:59 PM   #67
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spending money on things that will _never_ turn profit should remain in the domain of the chinese and the americans
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Old January 29th, 2009, 03:53 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by gramercy View Post
if the germans judge (rightly so) that there is not enough need to justify 300++ dedicated line, what makes you think there is enough demand in eastern europe?

come back when all of eastern europe has a gdp/capita above 25000 EUR and than we'll talk

but even then, it will not be feasible to build such a line in the slovenian alps or in rocky croatia

hungary would be an ideal place but it has such a crappy railway infrastructure that even 120 kph _average_ is a dream, even on main lines


bottomline is, 250 kph is good enough, even in japan they only have one section where they can go above 300, the rest of the (newly) built network is around 260-270

europe is much smaller, and it makes more sense to build 250 kph which can be shared with freight and local trains

Quote:
Originally Posted by gramercy View Post
the channel tunnel was built 100 % with private money, two decades have gone by and it is still not turning a profit

politicians (and apparently you) are cavalier with public money, i however prefer _my_ tax money spent in an economically feasible manner

thats "my excuse"



YOU are factually wrong

i did NOT say its impossible, i said it would be unfeasible
and there is no train that runs 350 in spain today


----

switzerland has arguably the best railroad infrastructure in the world and it is located ideally for high speed inter-european corridors

yet there isn't a single km that runs above 200 kph at the moment, and in the distant future they will only go up to 250 inside the tunnels and 200 on the east-west corridor, and perhaps 200 in valais

AT THE SAME TIME, 100 % of their network has electrification, they have most of their main lines capable of 140-160 kph, even single track ones
AT THE SAME TIME they have a very young fleet of trains that can actually do these "measily" speeds even on lines like Winterthur-St. Gallen full of twists and turns
AT THE SAME TIME they are running a programme to modernize over 600 small stops, providing a 21st century environment for travellers

germany and austraia are doing the same thing, they are spending a lot of money on smaller lines
germany has a huge amount of their main lines going at 160-200 kph, which servers the local destinations, something they have to consider since they have a _very_ different configuration of settlements, not to mention almost 3x the population density of france and spain

look at some remote french spanish italian or for that matter british lines
lines which serve small and medium sized towns
most of them have no electrification, no speed above 120-140 kph, not to mention the run-down rolling stock (look at some southern italian lines serving towns with populations above 100.000 ppl and with trainsets older than 40 years. its a disgrace)

i wouldnt mind being able to travel from warsaw to palermo 360 kph, but does it make sense when southern italy has a problem with sewage and garbage in the 21st century???
Trains dont run at 350km/h in spain because ERTMS2 is not yet operational ... no reason other than that.

There are no "run down" rolling stock nor slow running tracks left in Spain.

Poland is in the same situation as spain ... EU money is available and theres a "need" to create new HSL corridors to bring its larger cities together ... and Berlin/Wien are just around the corner.

Switzerland is a very different case ... they have a huge network of pendular and doubledecker intercity trains.

the UK is in a go-dont-go phase in wich they have "sufferable" intercity at 200km/h and are indecisive between pushing it till 225km/h or going overboard and create a 300km/h North-South trunk HSL.

But as distances get longer and services increase ... 200km/h suffice to connect cities less than 100km apart from each other.
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Old January 29th, 2009, 04:02 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by gramercy View Post
spending money on things that will _never_ turn profit should remain in the domain of the chinese and the americans
Lisboa-Porto = 300km

- 2 highways (one 100% tolled , other partially tolled) = both collapsed (large sections with more than 100.000 daily veicles in their entire lenghts) ... 3rd under construction ... the companies that explore the Tolled highways make huge profits every year (both are even going to enter the bid for the HSL railways)

- 1 mainline railway ... 220km/h intercity = 2h30 travel time = 4 million passengers per year ... dedicated HSL to be buit in the near future (1h15 travel time ... 1h possible in the near future)

- air connection has "only" 500.000 passengers per year (only people in transit use the low fare transfer)



Just looking at the Polish railways maps make one wonder why suck "small" upgrading plans ...

the "straight" line from Gdansk-Gorzow-berlin seems rather ... I don't even know how to call it ...

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Old January 29th, 2009, 04:22 PM   #70
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a 100 km journey takes
30 min @ 200 kph
24 min @ 250 kph
20 min @ 300 kph

the distance between geneva and zurich is a little over 200 km
you do the math

the higher the speed, the more it costs
to build (curvature, materials)
to maintain (trackwear)
to run (air resistance, rolling stock, signalling)

not to mention the fact that 250 kph lines can be mixed with freight


there are situations where 200-250 kph is enough considering that the vast majority of passangers (in switzerland, in germany, in austria) only travel an average of ~200 kms or less
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Old January 29th, 2009, 05:43 PM   #71
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Gramercy, now you really ARE talking out of the top of your hat. I mean... I haven't verified whether Geneva-Zurich is really 200 km long, but I HAVE verified that the best-travel time between those two Swiss cities is 2h42. Go calculate the average speed for yourself.
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Old January 29th, 2009, 05:51 PM   #72
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Gramercy, now you really ARE talking out of the top of your hat. I mean... I haven't verified whether Geneva-Zurich is really 200 km long, but I HAVE verified that the best-travel time between those two Swiss cities is 2h42. Go calculate the average speed for yourself.
we are talking about hypothetical speeds and hypothetical high speed lines _and_ why _sometimes_ speed isnt everything

please read posts above and make the connection before you make accusations
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Old February 1st, 2009, 09:01 PM   #73
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Dear sotavento,

(Do you mind if I just call you sota? I have a problem with wind...)

Fine, I don't disagree with most of the points you're making, though I would like to, shall we say, make a couple of drafting suggestions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sotavento
French have LaPoste. Plans over here are for express containers and other light cargo trains to use the HSL
Well yes, but... the TGV Poste travels only overnight - and at speeds that are identical to the passenger TGVs. (OK, almost identical: it's the first-generation TGVs units traveling at only 270 km/h.) If your "express containers" will do likewise, fine. I just say I have a problem - a big problem - with HS on lines that are also used by trains traveling at speeds beneath 200 km/h. If you want to know why, please consider the nasty accidents the Germans have had on lines with "Mischverkehr". As far as I know neither the Japanese nor the French have had anything quite of the kind on their dedicated high-speed tracks. - And, before you ask, I have the same problem with the new line between Perpignan and Figueras, which is also mixed traffic.

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Originally Posted by sotavento
and remember ... usually the terrains in the borders are rough or the old route allows speeds as high as 140/160 km/h on both sides
I totally agree with you. It is scandalous that, here in the 21st century, there are still main lines that operate at such low speeds.

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Originally Posted by sotavento
that Warsaw-Berlin-Hamburg seems like a prime candidate for tilting trains ... could use the "old" infraestructure to its limits ... and then some more.
Mwell... the Germans are supposed to have blessed the world and themselves with a "Superausbaustrecke" between Hamburg and Berlin, where trains can travel at 230 km/h on renovated tracks. If so, the need for tilting trains may be limited - although the new Pendolino ETR460 does of course run 250 km/h and so might be of use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sotavento
... go check on what lays between Berlin (wich is actuall only 80km away from the polish border) and Warsaw.
The topography and geography of the area between Berlin and Frankfurt (Oder) is not unlike what you have between Brussels and the border with France, or what you have between London and Folkstone. This just goes to show how much can be achieved through the pressure of determined neighbours.

Last edited by hans280; February 1st, 2009 at 11:00 PM.
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Old February 2nd, 2009, 08:11 PM   #74
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I totally agree with you. It is scandalous that, here in the 21st century, there are still main lines that operate at such low speeds.
its the end of the world

have you ever designed a timetable WITH 80-120 kph freight and 140 local and 160 kph intercity traffic sharing the SAME track?
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Old February 2nd, 2009, 09:40 PM   #75
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I think freight trains are more common at night. Besides,I dont think every freight train operates according to timetables,but when they get full. Therefore,I think they are allowed to travel only in "windows",and thats why one can see so much freight trains in small stations.

This is why there are no freight trains on dedicated lines,they cant stop and let other trains pass,as dedicated lines are less likely to have 4-8 track stations in the middle of nowhere.
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Old February 3rd, 2009, 12:35 AM   #76
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I think freight trains are more common at night. Besides,I dont think every freight train operates according to timetables,but when they get full. Therefore,I think they are allowed to travel only in "windows",and thats why one can see so much freight trains in small stations.

This is why there are no freight trains on dedicated lines,they cant stop and let other trains pass,as dedicated lines are less likely to have 4-8 track stations in the middle of nowhere.
yea

and thats precisely why we should only build HSL above 250 (without freight) when its absolutely certain that theres gonna be enough demand for passenger-only traffic
(a simple rule would be a minimum of 50.000 ppl / direction / day on a current line. that is long-distance travellers, we should exclude suburban passengers)

and this is why it makes no sense to upgrade old lines above say 160 without doubling the tracks (austrian style)
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Old February 3rd, 2009, 06:20 AM   #77
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nice map.
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Old February 27th, 2009, 01:31 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by hans280 View Post
Only last week I sat in a Thalys rattling through the outskirts of Aachen - commuter rails, and old at that - at about 60 km/h.
I can't stop the feeling you're unfairly picking here at Aachen. Wasn't the Buschtunnel still in renovation?
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Old February 27th, 2009, 02:02 AM   #79
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PKP on speed, ocassionally puffing some pot

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Originally Posted by E2rdEm View Post
Looking at the map you posted I cannot help but to feel the guys at PKP are constantly high. I don't know what that is they are sniffing, but it has definitely has incapacitated their analytical abilities.

In short, this line is IMHO completely unnecessary in present situation, i.e. there are much better ways to spend the money.

In long, this is a goddamn manipulation, probably intended just to provide these guys with something to do, and to get into attention of populist politicians.

Looking at the map again, I can point a few "wonderful" manipulations:
* Poznań- Gorzów... great, but there is NO train connection. Well, in theory one could go to Krzyż and transfer, but locals from FGW never do that - they take the bus.

* Poznań - Zielona Góra - there is a connection, but it requires the train direction to be switched, it takes some 30 minutes?, so instead of sniffing speed guys at PKP, spend the money on improving the situation by e.g. building an additional pass around Czersk, so that trains can skip it, or at least go through without the change of direction.

* Warszawa - Lublin - heard that section needs urgent upgrade

* Łódź - Katowice : poor connection, there are direct trains, but one needs usually 1 or 2 transfers

* Poznań- Gdańsk: sections limited to 70km/h

It's clear that the entire network needs an upgrade, some parts are quite good, some horrible, so the money would be best spent on anything that needs an urgent improvement, and not on some sick, and possibly not really required HST.

By the way, a small comparison:
Frankfurt - Dresden IC: average speed 75km/h
Poznań-Wrocław D: 72km/h

OK, I am comparing here one of the best sections in Poland (still under improvement) with God-knows-what in Germany. It's comparable to travelling by car. Other sections are just hardly faster than car, so it's these sections that need attention, not some friggin' HST!

And, besides, I am personally convinced that our national railway administration in its present shape is simply unable to build and administer such a project.

Last edited by LMB; April 8th, 2010 at 12:33 PM.
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Old February 27th, 2009, 02:13 AM   #80
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Originally Posted by hans280 View Post
So... what's the point in drawing a couple of HS tracks to the border? The train will continue at 120 km/h on the other side.
(slightly OT)

That was the reality some years ago (2001?), to my major surprise. The train on the Polish side had much higher average than in East Germany. I heard they were "repairing" something later, but judging by the travel time - not much has changed.

I guess Germans have different principals.
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