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Old 01-15-2011, 09:17 AM
 
Location: Minneapolis (St. Louis Park)
5,991 posts, read 8,310,239 times
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^Northeast, Midwest and Cali is inevitable....but people need to see the longterm benefits of getting HSR underway. Less so to compete nationally, moreso to compete globally. It'd be like Europe not having freeways because they have trains.
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Old 01-16-2011, 09:06 AM
 
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A high speed rail line would be convenient for a lot of snowbirds
Boston to Miami with a spur line over to Chicago. the Achilles heels of the idea is that you kinda need a car to get to the train and you need another one when you arrive at your destination, also the cost would probably be around $1000 per person
I'll stick with the car..
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:15 PM
 
Location: SWE
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There's really no place in Europe (or Japan, etc. for that matter..) that compares with, for example the Western part of the US. That is, big and mostly not so big population centers, in between can easily be hundreds and hundreds of miles of nothing but desert, or cornfield, or mountains, or a combination of some of those. Excluding a few corridors, mostly impossible to build a high-speed, high-volume rail passenger network that would bring anything of value to the region and be more than just an eye-candy money pit.

Unless you start shutting down roads or airports, and what sane person would agree to that? You can develop 80-110 mph intercity passenger rail networks in rather "marginal" areas and maybe be succesful with them, but for anything more you need lots of significant and dense population centers that are basically right next to each other. Any trip more than 500 miles and it becomes in most cases unpractical to do it by rail for mainstream markets.
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:34 PM
 
Location: SWE
887 posts, read 1,376,127 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexis4Jersey View Post
That doesn't apply to the Northeast , Transit / Rail ridership accounts for half the modal share. And the car culture is dying fast in this region , throw in a gas spike of 5$ a gallon and ppl will start flocking to it.
Does not have such a significant impact as one might assume. We pay, at the moment close to $11/gallon for gas, and alot of people still use cars or other private vehicles to move around. This is a sparsely populated country, and even with a rather large public transit network including passenger rail with fairly decent volumes and amount of routes, and a poor road network, for a majority of people it's still either too far out of reach, or the schedules are just inconvenient. And for alot of people it's just out of reach for a variety of reasons.

All that the high gas prices have done is emptied the pockets of the working and middle class, for alot of people a car is still the only reasonable option to move around, and a necessity. I don't appreciate private automobiles because i'm ignorant, i appreciate them because they offer more flexibility than most any other form of transportation. Cars, just like everything else have been evolving rapidly in recent years and will very likely continue to do so. What makes you think cars need to use gasoline or other endangered fossil fuels 20 years from now?
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:38 PM
 
Location: On the Rails in Northern NJ
12,381 posts, read 23,364,419 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vic_Vega View Post
Does not have such a significant impact as one might assume. We pay, at the moment close to $11/gallon for gas, and alot of people still use cars or other private vehicles to move around. This is a sparsely populated country, and even with a rather large public transit network including passenger rail with fairly decent volumes and amount of routes, and a poor road network, for a majority of people it's still either too far out of reach, or the schedules are just inconvenient. And for alot of people it's just out of reach for a variety of reasons.

All that the high gas prices have done is emptied the pockets of the working and middle class, for alot of people a car is still the only reasonable option to move around, and a necessity. Cars, just like everything else have been evolving rapidly in recent years and will very likely continue to do so. What makes you think cars need to use gasoline or other endangered fossil fuels 20 years from now?
Well the Northeast is dense....for the most part. The Rural areas have dense towns which were built by the RR's. So restoring Rail to the Rural areas is still a good investment , it would probably be done as a dual corridor Freight and Passenger Trains. So you cannot compare the Northeast to Finland , the Northeast is more like Germany or Netherlands in terms of density.
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:43 PM
 
Location: The Lakes
2,372 posts, read 4,449,496 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vic_Vega View Post
Does not have such a significant impact as one might assume. We pay, at the moment close to $11/gallon for gas, and alot of people still use cars or other private vehicles to move around. This is a sparsely populated country, and even with a rather large public transit network including passenger rail with fairly decent volumes and amount of routes, and a poor road network, for a majority of people it's still either too far out of reach, or the schedules are just inconvenient. And for alot of people it's just out of reach for a variety of reasons.

All that the high gas prices have done is emptied the pockets of the working and middle class, for alot of people a car is still the only reasonable option to move around, and a necessity. I don't appreciate private automobiles because i'm ignorant, i appreciate them because they offer more flexibility than most any other form of transportation. Cars, just like everything else have been evolving rapidly in recent years and will very likely continue to do so. What makes you think cars need to use gasoline or other endangered fossil fuels 20 years from now?
This is America. Our cars are very different from those in Europe.

Your SUVs get twice the fuel economy of our sedans because Americans love big engines and lots of space. You couldn't catch a Texan DEAD driving a Renault or Peugeot (plus they're French so they'd probably hate them by default)

Also, Americans make an average of 5 car trips per day and you can't walk to a corner store, to work, to a bar, or any of that in the majority of American cities outside of the CBDs.
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:49 PM
 
Location: SWE
887 posts, read 1,376,127 times
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Reducing the overall flexibility of the transportation network, just because someone has an agenda, or just for generally appearing to be "green" is the most disgusting thing i know of. It's always a step back, no matter how much you try to sugarcoat it. Public transportation should always be about creating more options for transportation, not reducing them. If creating a large passenger rail network means a $5/gallon jump in gas prices, then it's for the most part exactly about reducing the flexibility of transportation overall.
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Old 01-18-2011, 03:03 PM
 
Location: SWE
887 posts, read 1,376,127 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexis4Jersey View Post
Well the Northeast is dense....for the most part. The Rural areas have dense towns which were built by the RR's. So restoring Rail to the Rural areas is still a good investment , it would probably be done as a dual corridor Freight and Passenger Trains. So you cannot compare the Northeast to Finland , the Northeast is more like Germany or Netherlands in terms of density.
You are right, the NE part is mostly very dense, and could easily use a much better psngr rail network. Many parts of the west are not that way, and i would say they are very comparable to Finland, density wise. Even if some of the towns out west have been originally developed by the railroads, remember this was a time when automobiles, airplanes, and roads were mostly unheard of, and the passenger trains were competing with things like horse carriages. Not exactly the case later on, which contributed to the decline of passenger rail.

The interstate highway project surely did speed it up alot, but the change in my opinion was inevitable. For example, we have never had a highway system to much speak of, even up to the early - mid 70's paved roads were something more of a luxury, and even despite that passenger rail (as well as small-volume carload freight) has seen major cutbacks from it's heydays as soon as an automobile became affordable for common folk.
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Old 01-18-2011, 04:24 PM
 
Location: Youngstown, Oh.
4,893 posts, read 7,652,237 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vic_Vega View Post
Reducing the overall flexibility of the transportation network, just because someone has an agenda, or just for generally appearing to be "green" is the most disgusting thing i know of. It's always a step back, no matter how much you try to sugarcoat it. Public transportation should always be about creating more options for transportation, not reducing them. If creating a large passenger rail network means a $5/gallon jump in gas prices, then it's for the most part exactly about reducing the flexibility of transportation overall.
No one is suggesting that we do that. As far as I know, the discussion of public transportation has always been about creating more transportation options.
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Old 01-19-2011, 01:19 AM
 
34,356 posts, read 41,427,648 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexis4Jersey View Post
So restoring Rail to the Rural areas is still a good investment ,.
Do you really think a highspeed rail system between say Fargo ND to Great Falls Montana is going to be a money maker?

America in its early days may have been traversed by rail but today its all about the car and when prices get to $11gal were going to be paying it because for most of us theres just no viable option unless you live in one of the mega cities with a good public transit system.
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