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Old December 5th, 2010, 10:53 PM   #1261
ChrisZwolle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post
(I remember this example, shown by an environmentalist group).
Exactly. They exaggerate this issue and suggest any improvement in roads is not necessary because this kind of transport patterns can solve all problems.

The whole trucking "problem" through the Alps is grossly exaggerated, when you look at truck counts you can see they are much lower in the Gotthard or Brenner Pass than they are on any given major motorway in Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, United Kingdom, Germany or France. The main problems for the Gotthard tunnel is traffic safety, lack of redundancy and holiday traffic, not those few trucks transporting goods through the alps. So all these fancy multi-billion tax money sucking base tunnels are going to solve a non-problem.
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Old December 5th, 2010, 10:57 PM   #1262
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I think the best solution is a mixture of both. Neither "no new infrastructure" (often environmentalist oppose also to railways), nor "change transport patterns".

As forn the Pfänder tunnel, they should make that short stretch toll free...
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Old December 5th, 2010, 11:14 PM   #1263
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
The whole trucking "problem" through the Alps is grossly exaggerated, when you look at truck counts you can see they are much lower in the Gotthard or Brenner Pass than they are on any given major motorway in Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, United Kingdom, Germany or France. The main problems for the Gotthard tunnel is traffic safety, lack of redundancy and holiday traffic, not those few trucks transporting goods through the alps. So all these fancy multi-billion tax money sucking base tunnels are going to solve a non-problem.
You can't compare your flat soon-to-be-flooded-anyways country with an Alpine environment. We have a very different situation, all the traffic routes go through the valleys which are also the main population centres, because we simply don't have as much space as you do. We also face environmental problems and lastly Austria (and also Switzerland) rely heavily on tourism.

Btw. if you think that highways and car tunnels are for free, then here's the 411: they aren't. I'd rather have my tax money invested in sustainable infrastructure - not highways.

As for the Pfändertunnel: This stretch will never be tollfree. It's simply not gonna happen. It was already a huge fight just to introduce a corridor toll sticker for this stretch and ASFINAG already announced that this interim solution will end, once the second tube is open. I'm afraid the second tube will not suck a single car away from the city streets to the highway.
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Old December 5th, 2010, 11:58 PM   #1264
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Originally Posted by Maxx☢Power View Post
This is why environmentalists and others cheering for a "change of mentality" are unsuccessful most of the time: People don't care enough.
True, but this doesn't mean it's a good thing.
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Old December 6th, 2010, 12:18 PM   #1265
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maxx☢Power View Post
Companies are going to transport their products long distances if that's what makes them the most money, and people are going to drive through Bregenz to avoid the toll. None of that's ever going to change. ASFINAG were reasonable enough to introduce the Korridorvignette for people driving between DE&CH, if they remove it people are going to avoid the A14 and drive through Bregenz. No amount of finger wagging is going to change that, it's like trying to tell a river to stop running; it won't, it'll just route around you.
ASFINAG didn't want to introduce the Korridorvignette at all! It was forced to, because at the time elections were held in Vorarlberg, and the federal social-democrats wanted to boost their local branch. Hence, ASFINAG was forced to introduce it, yet they always insisted that it would be gone once the second tube will be opened.

So where's the moralising on my part? I never heard any environmentalist group object to the Korridorvignette! What they - amongst others - said, was that the 2nd tube is not gonna relieve the Bregenz area from traffic, because, as you said, those are mostly people who try to avoid tolls (in addition to local traffic obviously. it's easy to just point fingers at others).
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Old December 6th, 2010, 12:20 PM   #1266
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Bregenz is off-limits to through truck traffic by the way. I actually used that route once, but the whole route from the Swiss border to the German border is clogged, especially through central Bregenz.

The second tube for the Pfändertunnel will mostly be a traffic safety solution, and also save on winter sport related traffic jams.
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Old December 6th, 2010, 01:46 PM   #1267
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
I'd rather have my tax money invested in sustainable infrastructure - not highways.

highways are built not from your tax money, buddy...
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Old December 6th, 2010, 01:53 PM   #1268
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Bregenz is off-limits to through truck traffic by the way. I actually used that route once, but the whole route from the Swiss border to the German border is clogged, especially through central Bregenz.

The second tube for the Pfändertunnel will mostly be a traffic safety solution, and also save on winter sport related traffic jams.
I drove there a few weeks ago. I always used to take the tunnel and this was the first time I drove through Bregenz. Any idea when the second tube of the tunnel is finished? As driving through town is a nightmare.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 03:00 PM   #1269
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
The whole trucking "problem" through the Alps is grossly exaggerated, when you look at truck counts you can see they are much lower in the Gotthard or Brenner Pass than they are on any given major motorway in Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, United Kingdom, Germany or France.
I am by no means a hardcore environmentalist, but a motorway in almost flat country is a different story compared to narrow Alpine valleys like Inntal, the Tauern region or the Klostertal in Vorarlberg. Air exchange is worse, noise is intensified by multiple reflection, and traffic cannot spread out over multiple parallel corridors.

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Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
You can't compare your flat soon-to-be-flooded-anyways country with an Alpine environment. We have a very different situation, all the traffic routes go through the valleys which are also the main population centres, because we simply don't have as much space as you do. We also face environmental problems and lastly Austria (and also Switzerland) rely heavily on tourism.
Down to here, I fully agree with you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
Btw. if you think that highways and car tunnels are for free, then here's the 411: they aren't. I'd rather have my tax money invested in sustainable infrastructure - not highways.
Unfortunately, ain't gonna happen. Rail services over short to medium distances are timewise no competition to going by car, even with the whole congestion. If I may provide an example from my personal life: I grew up in Bregenz, right on L190 close to HTL, so I know the whole traffic problem by heart. Now I live in Zurich and work in Dübendorf, so when I want to visit my parents over the weekend I have two possibilities:
  • going by car (via A1, St. Gallen, St. Margrethen, A13, Diepoldsau, Hohenems, A14) takes me approximately 1:30 h, so if I leave work at 15:30 h, I'm at my mum's table at 17:00 to 17:10 h
  • going by rail/public transport, finishing at 15:30
  • wait until 15:40 to go to the bus stop
  • take bus at 15:48 h to Bahnhof Stettbach
  • take S-Bahn at 16:14 to Winterthur
  • change to ICN at 16:37 h to St. Gallen
  • change to S-Bahn at 17:20 h to St. Margrethen
  • change to regional train at 17:55 h to Bregenz
  • walk home approximately 10 min with all my baggage
That means, in the end it takes my 1:10 h longer, I need to change 4 times, and I have to carry all my stuff through town in the end. No-brainer for me.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
As for the Pfändertunnel: ... I'm afraid the second tube will not suck a single car away from the city streets to the highway.
It probably won't. But at least, it will reduce congestion in front of Pfändertunnel, which is also a plus. Nothing emits as much CO2 as a traffic jam. Current traffic through Pfändertunnel is about 32000 Kfz/24 h, with a design limit of about 20000 Kfz/24 h. And traffic jams of about 1 to 3 km are a daily occurrence in front of the tunnel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
ASFINAG didn't want to introduce the Korridorvignette at all! It was forced to, because at the time elections were held in Vorarlberg, and the federal social-democrats wanted to boost their local branch. Hence, ASFINAG was forced to introduce it, yet they always insisted that it would be gone once the second tube will be opened.

So where's the moralising on my part? I never heard any environmentalist group object to the Korridorvignette! What they - amongst others - said, was that the 2nd tube is not gonna relieve the Bregenz area from traffic, because, as you said, those are mostly people who try to avoid tolls (in addition to local traffic obviously. it's easy to just point fingers at others).
Korridorvignette is 2 EUR per direction. I sincerely hope that our politicians find a way to prolong the sale (are there elections coming in 2013?). However, hoping politicians do useful stuff is futile most of the time .

It's also an almost proven fact that the 2nd tube won't give much relief to the traffic situation in Bregenz, save some weekends in the holiday season when drivers try to avoid the jam in front of the tunnel. If you have followed the "Planungsprozess unteres Rheintal", there are the traffic research results. Bregenz itself and Dornbirn can only be relieved from traffic by an improved public transport system. In Lustenau, Hard, and Fussach, traffic reductions can rather be achieved by a new bypass road. And there is the problem: as with many things, only a combination of measures can achieve the desired result. However, the promotors of public transport always want to kill road projects, while the highway promotors think there is no use in public transport. If you would combine a new connection of A14.at and A13/A1.ch with the Korridorvignette valid on the whole connection and an improved public transport network in Northern Vorarlberg, you would probably get a reasonable result for the citizens living there.

The main problem with the connection CH/A on the road network is the "Dorfkaisertum". While the mayor of Lustenau wants a new road, but near Lauterach and Hard, the mayors of Lauterach and Hard want a new road, but near Lustenau. I think that with necessary measures such as cut-and-cover tunnels and biotop reclaims, a new road while minimizing the impact on the environment is possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Des View Post
I drove there a few weeks ago. I always used to take the tunnel and this was the first time I drove through Bregenz. Any idea when the second tube of the tunnel is finished? As driving through town is a nightmare.
2nd tube should be finished in summer 2012, then the old tube will be renovated. Full opening sometime in the first half of 2013.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maxx☢Power View Post
I think you misread me. You're completely right about the vignette and the Pfändertunnel, ASFINAG are the ones being unreasonable in this case.
I think the Korrdiorvignette is a reasonable compromise, IF they can agree to leave it in existence after opening of Pfänder II.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 06:39 PM   #1270
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highways are built not from your tax money, buddy...
Spot on! Not to mention the fact that the usual environmentalist propaganda actually hurts the environment. The opposition to nuclear power is just one of many examples.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 06:59 PM   #1271
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The opposition to nuclear power is just one of many examples.
But they usually propose also to reduce electricity demand.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 07:26 PM   #1272
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But they usually propose also to reduce electricity demand.
Yes, by taking huge "effective" steps, like banning incandescent light bulbs
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Old December 7th, 2010, 08:54 PM   #1273
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Yes, by taking huge "effective" steps, like banning incandescent light bulbs
This could have more influence than you think. A reduction of over 3% of the total energy consumption in the UK was found to be possible. Lighting uses 6,55% of the total UK electricity demand (18 typical UK dwellings were used in the cited study).
Article

The UK has a yearly electricity consumption of 3,46E11 kWh/a (CIA World Factbook). A reduction of 3% of this would result in a decrease in electricity consumption of over 10 billion kWh per year, equivalent to a the annual output of a bit more than one large nuclear power plant (peak wattage of about 1,2 GW) or - more important - of three to four coal power stations. It would reduce CO2 emissions by more than 12 million metric tons or about 2%. Doesn't sound like much but it's a significant step if you really want to reduce CO2 emissions.

But I think we should go back to topic...
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Old December 7th, 2010, 09:05 PM   #1274
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But how much does the energy consumption grows each year? The savings you can potentially made with banning of incandescant light bulbs is quickly offset by general energy / population growth. It's just an example of silly symbolic politics. But for many environmentalists everything is justified to reduce CO2 emissions, how insignificant they may be.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 11:08 PM   #1275
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Spot on! Not to mention the fact that the usual environmentalist propaganda actually hurts the environment. The opposition to nuclear power is just one of many examples.
How dare you to mention nuc*ear power in Austrian thread?
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Old December 8th, 2010, 09:32 AM   #1276
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
But how much does the energy consumption grows each year? The savings you can potentially made with banning of incandescant light bulbs is quickly offset by general energy / population growth. It's just an example of silly symbolic politics. But for many environmentalists everything is justified to reduce CO2 emissions, how insignificant they may be.
Almost 0 in the last 10 years. Look up the eurostat statistics. Plus, at least any growth is at least attenuated by countermeasures. Replacing light bulbs with energy saving lamps is no loss in comfort or money (remember, saver lamps have much higher lifespan compared to light bulbs - and I'm speaking of own experience here, not just babbling along with the EU propaganda). Now creating traffic jams by blocking new road projects under the climate change umbrella to "reduce" CO2 emissions, that's silly symbolic politics...
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How dare you to mention nuc*ear power in Austrian thread?
That's another example of symbolic politics. Austria has evolved from a electricity net exporter to a net importer in the last decades. The power generation capacity missing from the Zwentendorf and Asten/St. Florian sites was partly replaced by coal fired power plants, and partly by imports. Now, I'd feel more comfortable with having a well-maintained, state-of-the-art, Western nuclear power station in Austria than with importing power from containment-less, aging Soviet era power plants some 10s or 100s km off the border like Dukovany, Bohunice, or Kosloduj (is this still running?).
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Old December 8th, 2010, 03:02 PM   #1277
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Austrian Motorways are way better then german
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Old December 8th, 2010, 03:19 PM   #1278
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Western nuclear power station in Austria than with importing power from containment-less, aging Soviet era power plants some 10s or 100s km off the border like Dukovany, Bohunice, or Kosloduj (is this still running?).
Funny that you mention this. When the Dukovany is one of the most reliable nuclear power plants in the world. The truth is that from nuclear power plants comes around 14 % of electricity consumed in Austria (according to the greenpeace).

Anyway, there aren't many companies able to construct a nuclear power plant which I hope will happen in near future in CZ. Maybe five or so and from Western Europe is only one of them (French Areva), Westinghouse has american name, but it is Japanese company (Toshiba). Then there is Japanese Mitsubishi and korean Hydro and Nuclear Power. The Rosatom from Russia seems to be the second only european candidate. Due to the stupid policy of "no nuclear power" the Europe partially lost the ability to construct the nuclear reactors.

There is connection to the higways to not be completaly off topic.

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Old December 8th, 2010, 05:44 PM   #1279
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Due to the stupid policy of "no nuclear power" the Europe partially lost the ability to construct the nuclear reactors.

You are completely right! Fortunately, many governments have realized that nuclear energy is the right choice for the future and extended the lifetime of nuclear power plants (Germany) or plan to build the new ones or extend the currents nuclear power plants by new reactors (Finland-Olkiluoto,Czechia-Temelín,France and many many more...)
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Old December 8th, 2010, 06:36 PM   #1280
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The failure to build enough nuclear power plants is an environmental catastrophe that has resulted in the unnecessary burning of coal which has resulted in more pollution than all the road traffic in Europe.
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