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Old 06-11-2013, 05:18 AM
 
3,495 posts, read 3,246,140 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by #1MARTAFan View Post
We should spend billions of dollars on a system that doesn't have the demand to make it a worthwhile investment. What are you taxing to pay for the system? Using a very, very conservative estimate of $40 million per mile of construction cost, where do you come up with the $10 billion to pay for a 250 mile route to Charlotte? What if it costs $82 million per mile as other systems have cost? Where do you come up with $21 billion at that point?

$10-21 billion is a lot of money... but those 12 riders from Toccoa might double to a very satisfied 24 riders which would make it all worthwhile, right? Heck... the train might transform Toccoa into the next hugely popular technology hub, right?
This is the first leg of an investment to modernize rail transit for one of the fastest growing corridors in the country that will eventually connect 3 of the fastest growing metros (ATL, CLT and RDU) to points northward...which happens to be the region from where many of these people are relocating. The choo-choo is coming so its really a matter of pay now or substantially more later...again, planning for 2020 in 2030 is visionless and shortsighted.

Referring to Toccoa as an impetus for building the SEHSR's first leg is silly and doesn't give your argument any credibility.
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Old 06-11-2013, 08:30 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,881 posts, read 26,973,369 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Aristotle View Post
This is the first leg of an investment to modernize rail transit for one of the fastest growing corridors in the country that will eventually connect 3 of the fastest growing metros (ATL, CLT and RDU) to points northward...which happens to be the region from where many of these people are relocating. The choo-choo is coming so its really a matter of pay now or substantially more later...again, planning for 2020 in 2030 is visionless and shortsighted.
Brr? Do you have some crystal ball the rest of us do not?

HSR is a pipe dream in the NEC little less the Atlanta-Charlotte corridor. I doubt I'll ever see a high speed train on the East Coast in my lifetime, particularly when there are considerably cheaper alternatives that also improve speed and efficiency.

And as we already stated, the fact the region is growing is not a reason to spend billions on HSR. The region does not have the density to support it. Metro Atlanta, Metro Charlotte and the Research Triangle are less than half the size the Bos-Wash corridor was in 1950. And those cities don't even have the transit ridership numbers those cities had 63 years ago. There's no pressing need to build HSR. I mean, there might be a pressing need in your mind to do it, but my guess is that if you put Fulton, Gwinnett, Cobb, Clayton and Greenville County to a vote on HSR 10 years from now, they would shoot it down just like they did the last transit measure.

Once the Atlanta-Charlotte corridor starts to remotely resemble the density in Europe, the density in the Northeast or even the density in California, then we can revisit this conversation. But my guess is that we're talking about a century rather than 20 years.
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Old 06-11-2013, 08:39 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,881 posts, read 26,973,369 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Born 2 Roll View Post
All of those intermediate stops between major stops in Atlanta and Charlotte and Greensboro and Raleigh, etc, will generate riders who will be using the train for trips of various lengths (some trips shorter, some trips longer, etc)
No they won't. Those towns are ridiculously small. The intermediate towns between Washington and Boston (end to end in the NEC) are Baltimore, Wilmington, Philadelphia, Newark, New York City. That's a very different situation than having Clemson and Greenville as your intermediate cities.

And nobody's going to want to spend $200+ to a ride a train. Or even $120 to ride a train. They can drive for cheaper. And it's not like Greenville, SC is Manhattan where you can just jump out of the train station, hail a cab, and then carry on with your business. You need a car in virtually every city in the Southeast. So it just makes sense to drive. Besides, when you start talking about fares in the $100+ range, it's easier to just fly at that point.
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:10 AM
 
3,495 posts, read 3,246,140 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajanYankee View Post
Brr? Do you have some crystal ball the rest of us do not?

HSR is a pipe dream in the NEC little less the Atlanta-Charlotte corridor. I doubt I'll ever see a high speed train on the East Coast in my lifetime, particularly when there are considerably cheaper alternatives that also improve speed and efficiency.

And as we already stated, the fact the region is growing is not a reason to spend billions on HSR. The region does not have the density to support it. Metro Atlanta, Metro Charlotte and the Research Triangle are less than half the size the Bos-Wash corridor was in 1950. And those cities don't even have the transit ridership numbers those cities had 63 years ago. There's no pressing need to build HSR. I mean, there might be a pressing need in your mind to do it, but my guess is that if you put Fulton, Gwinnett, Cobb, Clayton and Greenville County to a vote on HSR 10 years from now, they would shoot it down just like they did the last transit measure.

Once the Atlanta-Charlotte corridor starts to remotely resemble the density in Europe, the density in the Northeast or even the density in California, then we can revisit this conversation. But my guess is that we're talking about a century rather than 20 years.

I use the same crystal ball you use and what makes one an authority on the necessary population density threshold to start planning for the future. Given growth trends and unprecented potential for growth in this corridor, the last thing any area needs to do is wait till there is a "pressing" need. Of course, seek alternatives and hybrid solutions, etc.
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:13 AM
 
3,495 posts, read 3,246,140 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajanYankee View Post
No they won't. Those towns are ridiculously small. The intermediate towns between Washington and Boston (end to end in the NEC) are Baltimore, Wilmington, Philadelphia, Newark, New York City. That's a very different situation than having Clemson and Greenville as your intermediate cities.

And nobody's going to want to spend $200+ to a ride a train. Or even $120 to ride a train. They can drive for cheaper. And it's not like Greenville, SC is Manhattan where you can just jump out of the train station, hail a cab, and then carry on with your business. You need a car in virtually every city in the Southeast. So it just makes sense to drive. Besides, when you start talking about fares in the $100+ range, it's easier to just fly at that point.
Again, your uncanny clairvoyance to predict the future and in-depth research to validate those claims is astounding...ok, Ms Cleo...lol.
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:16 AM
 
Location: Ono Island, Orange Beach, AL
10,103 posts, read 9,630,500 times
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Good Op Ed discussion of this in today's AJC.
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:24 AM
 
10,965 posts, read 7,849,668 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnsleyPark View Post
Good Op Ed discussion of this in today's AJC.
Yes. Here is the piece. Good read from both sides: Should Georgia improve rail? | Atlanta Forward
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:33 AM
 
10,965 posts, read 7,849,668 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Aristotle View Post
Again, your uncanny clairvoyance to predict the future and in-depth research to validate those claims is astounding...ok, Ms Cleo...lol.
I am not sure why some people are so opposed research and planning for the future. This planning will save money either way if this line gets built or not. As much as some may think otherwise, you are not going to determine the cost, ridership, and exact route for a connection like this by going with your gut feelings and pulling random bits of trivia from the internet.
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:40 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,881 posts, read 26,973,369 times
Reputation: 12125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Aristotle View Post
I use the same crystal ball you use and what makes one an authority on the necessary population density threshold to start planning for the future. Given growth trends and unprecented potential for growth in this corridor, the last thing any area needs to do is wait till there is a "pressing" need. Of course, seek alternatives and hybrid solutions, etc.
When I was talking about your "crystal ball," I was referring to your statement that "the choo choo is coming." You stated that as if it's a done deal. It's not even close to being a done deal for Boston, New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, DC, so what on earth makes you think HSR is coming to the South? This is completely separate and apart from the issue of population density.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Aristotle View Post
Again, your uncanny clairvoyance to predict the future and in-depth research to validate those claims is astounding...ok, Ms Cleo...lol.
Yes, $200. That's about what tickets cost now. You can't build new infrastructure, hire personnel (unionized personnel), and then expect to charge $15 for a bullet train to Charlotte. That's completely unrealistic. The Acela is expensive and so is HSR in Europe. What makes you think HSR elsewhere would be an exception?
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Old 06-11-2013, 01:17 PM
 
Location: Decatur, GA
5,418 posts, read 4,178,141 times
Reputation: 2914
Um, HELLO! The NEC already does have what qualifies as HSR! While they're looking toward 220mph trains in the future, that's not what Atlanta to Charlotte would need to be for a while. At best, we would have 125mph trains, but probably they'd max out at 90mph to begin with. Even once we had 220mph trains, the slower ones would probably stay around as the lower-cost alternative, as well as serving more intermediate cities.
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