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-   -   California High Speed Rail Thread (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=180558)

JDRCRASH Feb 16, 2012 5:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by twinpeaks (Post 5592706)
Why leave the country? you can't just give up unless you are not a citizen, then go. If you are, you need to fight and help make a difference for the better. We need more sane people likely you.

Sorry, you need money and power to make a difference on the scale of what's needed in this country... and money and power (especially on that scale) corrupts. And that's all assuming you don't get harrassed/intimidated by opposers and law enforcement and called insane by biased media.

Trying to "make a difference" by going into politics is a waste of time, sadly...

drifting sun Feb 16, 2012 6:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by twoNeurons (Post 5592032)
It won't get out of the house, but people will blame the party that opposes it. These things are usually strategic... especially when followed up with how many jobs generated the bill will bring, etc.

You have it backwards. It won't get out of the House, and instead of railing against the Republican stone-walling of every single thing Obama proposes, people will blame Obama and complain how he "hasn't gotten anything done", or "his failed policies failed to make a dent in all the failure going around", or "Obama hasn't gotten me a new job", ad nauseum.

jg6544 Feb 16, 2012 11:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aquablue (Post 5592355)
Why is there no compromise on HSR??

Same reason there isn't any compromise with the Republicans on anything else. Their sole goal is to make the President a failure and damn what happens to the country.

skyscraperfan23 Feb 17, 2012 1:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jg6544 (Post 5593701)
Same reason there isn't any compromise with the Republicans on anything else. Their sole goal is to make the President a failure and damn what happens to the country.

Both parties to me are fools and this globalist name nobama is not my president neither is the neocons.

fflint Feb 17, 2012 2:06 AM

People, please try to refocus on transportation and away from DC partisan politics--or just take it to the Current Events section, where partisan politics are supposed to be discussed on this forum.

M II A II R II K Feb 18, 2012 5:35 PM

Caltrain plan would fast-track electric rail


February 13, 2012

By Michael Cabanatuan

Read More: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...4G0.DTL&ao=all

Quote:

The overhaul of California's high-speed rail project could bring the Bay Area $1 billion to electrify Caltrain and lay the path for bullet train service between San Francisco and San Jose sooner than anticipated.

The Chronicle has learned that officials with Bay Area transportation agencies are in negotiations with each other, and with the California High-Speed Rail Authority, to craft an agreement that would fund an advanced train-control system, electrify the rails on the Peninsula and eliminate some of the rail crossings - perhaps as soon as 2016, five to 10 years earlier than previous estimates.

"There's a lot of work that needs to happen, and a lot of moving parts, but this is the closest we've been to seeing some real tangible benefit to Caltrain from the high-speed rail project," said Seamus Murphy, a Caltrain spokesman.

.....

pesto Feb 18, 2012 7:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by M II A II R II K (Post 5596011)
Caltrain plan would fast-track electric rail


February 13, 2012

By Michael Cabanatuan

Read More: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...4G0.DTL&ao=all

Caltrain on the Peninsula is already pretty good. But if this improves it, so much the better. I would probably spend more on getting BART from Fremont to SJ, where it could link to Caltrain on the Peninsula. This would mesh with VTA for local SC County trips and form a serious transit hub in the SJ-Santa Clara corridor, which seems to have a dense future in store.

202_Cyclist Feb 19, 2012 3:38 PM

Officials stand by high-speed rail estimate (Fresno Bee)
 
29M annual trips between LA - SF sounds reasonable. By 2040, California's population should grow by at least 15M more people (population growth as been 400,000 - 500,000 per year for the past decade). Ridership on Amtrak increased by more than five percent last year, setting a ridership record. As CA's metro regions continue to build their local transit and commuter rail networks, this will provide an important feeder system. High speed rail will travel between 2-3 times faster than the current Acela trains in the Northeast. And either the price of gas will be significantly more two decades from now or if there is a great expansion of plug-in hybrid vehicles, the highways will be far more congested as California continues to growth. Both will increase the relative attractiveness of high speed rail compared with automobiles.

The estimate provided in this article is only for 2040. Phase I of this investment is suppose to be completed around 2030. It will have a useful life of at least 50-60 years. It is entirely reasonable to expect that fast, efficient, high speed rail will be able to attract 30M annual passengers between the Bay Area - Los Angeles by 2070 - 2080.


Officials stand by high-speed rail estimate

By Tim Sheehan
Fresno Bee
Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012

"State rail officials are defending as reasonable their estimates that passengers will take at least 29 million trips a year on high-speed trains between San Francisco and Los Angeles by 2040.

In car-loving California, state High-Speed Rail Authority board members say, it will take only a small share of the millions of trips now being made by car and airplane to switch to trains to make the project profitable.

"If you look at the long-term projections for rides in this state," said Michael Rossi, an authority board member and former vice president of Bank of America, "we only need less than 3% total ride changes [to high-speed trains] from cars and aviation to break even, and more of that will come from cars than aviation..."

http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/02/18/...igh-speed.html

ardecila Feb 19, 2012 11:11 PM

Cool. It seems like the major issues are slowly being resolved after a moment of crisis. This is starting to have the air of inevitability around it, especially with Jerry Brown's unwavering support.

ltsmotorsport Feb 20, 2012 12:42 AM

It's great having Michael Rossi on the team as well as he was appointed the Governor's 'Jobs Czar' last year (for his business background) and can hopefully continue to show that this system will be economically viable.

philvia Feb 20, 2012 5:58 PM

There's so much emphasis on profitability with rail projects... I wonder how profitable the highways and airports between SF and LA are.

aquablue Feb 20, 2012 6:05 PM

Does anybody have any idea what trainsets will be ordered if this goes ahead? What's most likely, French, German, Japanese, or Chinese trains? Any rumours?

fflint Feb 20, 2012 9:08 PM

Just noticed this interesting and relevant snippet published last month in a Washington Post article on HSR:

"Few places would benefit more from the trains. California’s urban areas are notorious for hair-raising traffic jams. The skies between San Francisco and Los Angeles — the country’s busiest route — are so packed that 25 percent of the flights between the two cities are at least one hour late, according to state officials. And with the state’s population projected to soar by 50 percent over the next four decades, the congestion is expected only to grow more dire."

aquablue Feb 20, 2012 9:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fflint (Post 5598195)
Just noticed this interesting and relevant snippet published last month in a Washington Post article on HSR:

"Few places would benefit more from the trains. California’s urban areas are notorious for hair-raising traffic jams. The skies between San Francisco and Los Angeles — the country’s busiest route — are so packed that 25 percent of the flights between the two cities are at least one hour late, according to state officials. And with the state’s population projected to soar by 50 percent over the next four decades, the congestion is expected only to grow more dire."

This should have been done decades ago and they are still squabbling over it like children? Why state the obvious.. Everyone knows how awful the traffic is in CA.

JDRCRASH Feb 21, 2012 4:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fflint (Post 5598195)
The skies between San Francisco and Los Angeles — the country’s busiest route — are so packed that 25 percent of the flights between the two cities are at least one hour late, according to state officials. And with the state’s population projected to soar by 50 percent over the next four decades, the congestion is expected only to grow more dire."

"HSR doesn't make any sense in LA-SF"..... right. :rolleyes:

pesto Feb 21, 2012 10:43 PM

An interesting succession of non sequiturs. This is why it is useful to talk to people with different views. Not that you will change your minds; but at least change to different arguments.

LA and the Bau are very crowded metros. So build a a connection between them? This is nonsense on its face. How does this help me get from Reseda or San Dimas to downtown or Century City? Or Pleasanton or SF to Palo Alto or SJ? What is needed is intra-city not inter-city transit improvements.

The skies being full is just plain false. Call right now and see if you can get a flight from Oakland, SF, SJ or Sacto to LA, Burbank, Long Beach, the OC or Ontario. I virtually guarantee you won't have a problem. Things are so slow that Oakland is advertising for people to come use their airport. Ontario shut down a terminal. I rarely see lines at Burbank. LAX and SFO are legitimately crowded but they are national and international hubs and the instrastate traffic is largely immaterial to their problems.

fflint Feb 21, 2012 10:54 PM

Whose claims to trust--California state officials as quoted in the Washington Post, or a forum anti-HSR extremist? Hmm.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Washington Post
The skies between San Francisco and Los Angeles — the country’s busiest route — are so packed that 25 percent of the flights between the two cities are at least one hour late, according to state officials. And with the state’s population projected to soar by 50 percent over the next four decades, the congestion is expected only to grow more dire."


jg6544 Feb 21, 2012 11:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fflint (Post 5599822)
Whose claims to trust--California state officials as quoted in the Washington Post, or a forum anti-HSR extremist? Hmm.

Who apparently has never had to get from the Oakland airport to BART after dark!

Jasonhouse Feb 22, 2012 12:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pesto (Post 5599806)
LA and the Bau are very crowded metros. So build a a connection between them? This is nonsense on its face. How does this help me get from Reseda or San Dimas to downtown or Century City? Or Pleasanton or SF to Palo Alto or SJ? What is needed is intra-city not inter-city transit improvements.

Seems to me that y'all need both.

edluva Feb 22, 2012 8:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pesto (Post 5599806)
What is needed is intra-city not inter-city transit improvements.

why not both? isn't that the whole point of hsr? to link and feed off growth of population centers that are increasingly intra-connected?

i think you're incorrectly seeing hsr purely as a response rather than a choice.

jg6544 Feb 22, 2012 5:44 PM

California absolutely needs HSR among the major population centers and modern, fast, efficient, rail-based mass transit within them.

pesto Feb 22, 2012 7:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fflint (Post 5599822)
Whose claims to trust--California state officials as quoted in the Washington Post, or a forum anti-HSR extremist? Hmm.

I agree; that's a no brainer.

pesto Feb 22, 2012 7:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jg6544 (Post 5599868)
Who apparently has never had to get from the Oakland airport to BART after dark!

You're right. I either park or am picked up by my family, who live in Oakland. But what is the point?

pesto Feb 22, 2012 7:46 PM

Do we need both? No. We NEED help within the LA and Bay Areas. We don't need help getting between them.

Or putting it another way: with 6B to spend on a 120B project, where do you put your money first: Manteca to near Bako? or within the two huge congested areas that need rebuiliding and upgrading? If you say the latter, you agree with me, Jerry Brown, every state audit committee, every local transit authority from SF to SD and I would guess about 80 percent of the population.

gtbassett Feb 22, 2012 10:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pesto (Post 5601016)
Do we need both? No. We NEED help within the LA and Bay Areas. We don't need help getting between them.

Or putting it another way: with 6B to spend on a 120B project, where do you put your money first: Manteca to near Bako? or within the two huge congested areas that need rebuiliding and upgrading? If you say the latter, you agree with me, Jerry Brown, every state audit committee, every local transit authority from SF to SD and I would guess about 80 percent of the population.

Agreed, if we're building HSR in segments, you need to start with LA to SD, and this is coming from an SF resident that desperately wants HSR between the major metro regions of California. But building a small stretch in the middle of the central valley from nowhere to nowhere is not a way to prove that HSR works and will eventually kill support for any future expansion.

202_Cyclist Feb 22, 2012 10:55 PM

gtbassett:
Quote:

Agreed, if we're building HSR in segments, you need to start with LA to SD, and this is coming from an SF resident that desperately wants HSR between the major metro regions of California. But building a small stretch in the middle of the central valley from nowhere to nowhere is not a way to prove that HSR works and will eventually kill support for any future expansion.
For all of the criticism of the CA High Speed Rail Authority as an imperial bureaucracy that doesn't listen to anyone, this sounds like the strategy that is now being implemented with Jerry Brown's new appointees to the Authority.

Transportation agencies seek bullet train funds to upgrade local corridors
New proposals call for spending an additional $4 billion from a $9-billion bond fund to improve existing tracks in Northern and Southern California that would later become part of the bullet-train system.

February 19, 2012
By Dan Weikel and Ralph Vartabedian
Los Angeles Times

"In a major shift in thinking about the state's bullet train, powerful transportation agencies in Northern and Southern California want to quickly obtain up to half the project's bond financing to upgrade local rail corridors that could become part of the proposed high-speed network.

Until recently, the project was expected to draw down only $2.7 billion of its $9-billion bond fund in coming years to help pay for a 130-mile rail segment in the Central Valley. But the new proposals call for potentially spending an additional $4 billion upfront, which would leave just a few billion in the state's voter-approved finance package.

"We ought to be investing whatever is available now to show California and the rest of the country the benefits of high speed rail very soon," said Jose Luis Moscovich, executive director of the San Francisco County Transportation Authority. "We believe there can be simultaneous efforts in Southern California and on the peninsula" between San Francisco and San Jose..."

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/feb...-plan-20120220

jg6544 Feb 23, 2012 7:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by gtbassett (Post 5601316)
Agreed, if we're building HSR in segments, you need to start with LA to SD, and this is coming from an SF resident that desperately wants HSR between the major metro regions of California. But building a small stretch in the middle of the central valley from nowhere to nowhere is not a way to prove that HSR works and will eventually kill support for any future expansion.

I agree in principle about LA-SD, but the reality is that most of this route is through more-or-less densely populated urban areas. With the possible exception of the Peninsula between SF and San Jose, this could be the most expensive stretch to build in the entire state.

I would, however, like to see the interim step of eliminating grade crossings along the entire route; double-tracking the whole thing, and electrifying it. Still couldn't run trains at HSR speeds, but that alone would cut down the travel time and probably make the train faster than driving.

pesto Feb 24, 2012 7:58 PM

Rational thinking seems to be taking over. Anything that is HSR compatible and links Riverside, Irvine, Ventura and the High Desert to Union Station has my support. Ditto fo linking SJ to Oakland and Sacto.

Still controversial: HSR currently wants to go from LA/Anaheim/Irvine to SD via Riverside. This is not an efficient route. Leave it for last, or never.

Same for spending money on the Peninsula. It will be very expensive and the locals don't want it or need it (Caltrain is already in place and quite efficient). I would improve the East Bay corridor and allow those going to SF to switch to Caltrain at SJ.

202_Cyclist Feb 24, 2012 8:07 PM

pesto:
Quote:

Still controversial: HSR currently wants to go from LA/Anaheim/Irvine to SD via Riverside. This is not an efficient route. Leave it for last, or never.
It might be a very indirect route but there are 5M residents in the Inland Empire, this was one of the fastest growing parts of the state last decade, and sa you've pointed out several times, there is an airport that can be served with high speed rail that has plenty of extra capacity. Highway 91 is also one of the most congested roads in CA.

JDRCRASH Feb 24, 2012 10:24 PM

^ And if anyone really thinks that South OC residents will be willing to let HSR run along the coast, I'm sorry but they're simply being delusional.

jg6544 Feb 25, 2012 12:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pesto (Post 5603888)
Rational thinking seems to be taking over. Anything that is HSR compatible and links Riverside, Irvine, Ventura and the High Desert to Union Station has my support.

And if California were two states - north and south - I might agree with you. But it isn't, is it?

zilfondel Feb 25, 2012 6:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jg6544
Who apparently has never had to get from the Oakland airport to BART after dark!

Quote:

Originally Posted by pesto (Post 5600990)
You're right. I either park or am picked up by my family, who live in Oakland. But what is the point?

Really? Even I've done this, and I don't even live in California! They have these shuttle bus things that go between BART and the airport every 30 mins or so. :jester:

==========

In all seriousness tho, upgrading trackage along the route will not allow anything close to the 220 mph speeds they were targeting. Track bed & geometry simply won't allow it - curves need to be superelevated based on the speeds of the trains, not vice-versa.

However, since the tracks in urban areas that connect to stations will never run anywhere close to 220 mph, they could tackle the "last mile" problem first. As the most politically and technically challenging aspect of HSR construction, not to mention the longest for construction, getting the stations built first would be a huge step. Then they could just swap out those HSR middle sections with new track, like they did on the new Bay Bridge span (ok, metaphorically), and buy new trains.

It will probably cost more in the long run, however, as they will need to spread costs over several additional decades. Maybe finish in the 2350?s Just in time for warp travel to the Delta Quadrant! (which will be in Chinese starships, btw).

pesto Feb 26, 2012 1:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist (Post 5603909)
pesto:


It might be a very indirect route but there are 5M residents in the Inland Empire, this was one of the fastest growing parts of the state last decade, and sa you've pointed out several times, there is an airport that can be served with high speed rail that has plenty of extra capacity. Highway 91 is also one of the most congested roads in CA.

Agree with all of this; in 20 years maybe it makes sense if there is a meaningful amount of transit between them. But HSR's estimates of commuters between the IE and SD are very small (or were when I checked a year or two ago). The great majority of hoped for riders are from the 13M people in LA/OC and they are going to take much longer to get there than if they drove. And, when driving you can take 3 other people (or more) with you. So I'm not optimistic.

pesto Feb 26, 2012 1:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zilfondel (Post 5605043)
Really? Even I've done this, and I don't even live in California! They have these shuttle bus things that go between BART and the airport every 30 mins or so. :jester:

==========

In all seriousness tho, upgrading trackage along the route will not allow anything close to the 220 mph speeds they were targeting. Track bed & geometry simply won't allow it - curves need to be superelevated based on the speeds of the trains, not vice-versa.

However, since the tracks in urban areas that connect to stations will never run anywhere close to 220 mph, they could tackle the "last mile" problem first. As the most politically and technically challenging aspect of HSR construction, not to mention the longest for construction, getting the stations built first would be a huge step. Then they could just swap out those HSR middle sections with new track, like they did on the new Bay Bridge span (ok, metaphorically), and buy new trains.

It will probably cost more in the long run, however, as they will need to spread costs over several additional decades. Maybe finish in the 2350?s Just in time for warp travel to the Delta Quadrant! (which will be in Chinese starships, btw).

Chinese starships? You must not have read the WSJ article on the Chinese engineers trying to reverse engineer the French and Japanese HSR technology. They finally gave up and kluged together a system of having a guy watch the gauges and run down the train screaming to the driver when one goes into a danger zone.

electricron Feb 26, 2012 3:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zilfondel (Post 5605043)
In all seriousness tho, upgrading trackage along the route will not allow anything close to the 220 mph speeds they were targeting. Track bed & geometry simply won't allow it - curves need to be superelevated based on the speeds of the trains, not vice-versa.

However, since the tracks in urban areas that connect to stations will never run anywhere close to 220 mph, they could tackle the "last mile" problem first.

At one time, one could find a map of the maximum speeds allowed on the various CHSR track sections, but I can't find it anymore, looks like someone is sweeping what they don't want the public to know under a rug.

But the only track sections ever proposed to reach 200 mph speeds was in the central valley - what the FRA wants to built first. The LA-SD segment never reached 200 mph, but I believe it did once indicate faster than 110 mph. Likewise with the SF to SJ segment.

But I'm not certain because I can't find that old map. I do believe we could kill many arguments here if someone could find and repost that map.

drifting sun Feb 26, 2012 3:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pesto (Post 5605510)
Chinese starships? You must not have read the WSJ article on the Chinese engineers trying to reverse engineer the French and Japanese HSR technology. They finally gave up and kluged together a system of having a guy watch the gauges and run down the train screaming to the driver when one goes into a danger zone.

Which did not work out too well for them, as they already have had at least one horrendous accident, due most likely to their lack of safety tech planning. No, whatever shape or form CA and other HSR in the U.S. takes, we should look to the Japanese, if anybody. I believe that they have a record of zero passenger fatalities throughout all the years of running the Shinkansen.

Edit: I think someone got stuck in the doors when they were closing one time, but that's about the only one (not counting the suicides).

ardecila Feb 26, 2012 5:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pesto (Post 5603888)
Same for spending money on the Peninsula. It will be very expensive and the locals don't want it or need it (Caltrain is already in place and quite efficient). I would improve the East Bay corridor and allow those going to SF to switch to Caltrain at SJ.

Depends what you mean by "spending money". If they split the $4 billion equally between northern/southern California, then that's $2 billion for the Peninsula and Altamont. (A Pacheco crossing would have to wait much longer, if ever.)

Caltrain estimates that you could electrify the whole corridor to Tamien (SJ) and install the PTC signal system required for HSR for about $950 million. You can also build a "mid-line overtake" - essentially passing tracks - for $600 million. That leaves $450 million for Altamont... I'm not too clear on what needs to be done over there.

All of a sudden you've got a corridor that can support HSR.

dimondpark Feb 26, 2012 7:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jg6544 (Post 5599868)
Who apparently has never had to get from the Oakland airport to BART after dark!

I dont know what your trying to imply with this comment, but the AirBART bus service between Oakland Airport and the Coliseum BART station is just fine at night, in fact every 10 minutes during all BART service hours.

Furthermore, this is currently being built between Oakland International Airport and the Coluseum BART station.
http://sf.streetsblog.org/wp-content...09/OAC-pic.jpg
http://sf.streetsblog.org/wp-content...09/OAC-pic.jpg

Construction pics:
http://extras.mnginteractive.com/liv...~7_GALLERY.JPG

http://extras.mnginteractive.com/liv...~3_GALLERY.JPG

202_Cyclist Mar 2, 2012 3:59 PM

High-speed rail board backs SoCal bid for $1 billion (San Diego Union-Tribune)
 
High-speed rail board backs SoCal bid for $1 billion

San Diego Union-Tribune
Written by Robert J. Hawkins
3/2/2012

"The board of the High Speed Rail Authority today voted to support a memorandum of understanding from a group of Southern California transportation agencies seeking $1 billion for local rail improvements.

In return for bringing the local rail system up to HSR performance standards and essentially supporting the high-speed rail project, the coalition of agencies wants the High Speed Rail Authority to release $1 billion in Proposition 1A funds – from the $9 billion voter-approved bond referendum.

The general feeling of the board was that the request fits in with "blended approach" for the high speed rail project. Similar requests are being prepared by Inland and Northern California transportation agencies..."

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/...bid-1-billion/

202_Cyclist Mar 2, 2012 6:57 PM

High-speed rail project likely delayed until 2013 (Fresno Bee)
 
High-speed rail project likely delayed until 2013

By Tim Sheehan
The Fresno Bee
Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012

“Construction of a high-speed train line in the central San Joaquin Valley was supposed to start late this year. Now, officials say, it's not likely to start until early 2013, even if state legislators approve billions in bond money this spring.

At its meeting Thursday in Sacramento, the California High-Speed Rail Authority will learn about an updated schedule for the $6 billion construction project.

The slowdown in the schedule is the result of revisions to environmental reports for the 120-mile Fresno-to-Bakersfield section of the rail line -- part of the backbone of a proposed 520-mile system of electric trains connecting San Francisco and Los Angeles. Later extensions would add lines to Sacramento and San Diego.

About $3 billion in federal stimulus and transportation funds earmarked for the project in 2010 and 2011 were based on construction starting by September 2012. But a 2013 start isn't expected to endanger the funds, high-speed rail officials said, because the more important deadline is having the work completed by late 2017…”

http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/02/28/...struction.html

pesto Mar 2, 2012 7:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist (Post 5612868)
High-speed rail project likely delayed until 2013

By Tim Sheehan
The Fresno Bee
Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012

“Construction of a high-speed train line in the central San Joaquin Valley was supposed to start late this year. Now, officials say, it's not likely to start until early 2013, even if state legislators approve billions in bond money this spring.

At its meeting Thursday in Sacramento, the California High-Speed Rail Authority will learn about an updated schedule for the $6 billion construction project.

The slowdown in the schedule is the result of revisions to environmental reports for the 120-mile Fresno-to-Bakersfield section of the rail line -- part of the backbone of a proposed 520-mile system of electric trains connecting San Francisco and Los Angeles. Later extensions would add lines to Sacramento and San Diego.

About $3 billion in federal stimulus and transportation funds earmarked for the project in 2010 and 2011 were based on construction starting by September 2012. But a 2013 start isn't expected to endanger the funds, high-speed rail officials said, because the more important deadline is having the work completed by late 2017…”

http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/02/28/...struction.html

I suspect the delay is mostly political. Easier to rearrange priorities after the election. Especially if you're going to step on the toes of big contributors.

jg6544 Mar 2, 2012 8:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dimondpark (Post 5605747)
I dont know what your trying to imply with this comment, but the AirBART bus service between Oakland Airport and the Coliseum BART station is just fine at night, in fact every 10 minutes during all BART service hours.

Furthermore, this is currently being built between Oakland International Airport and the Coluseum BART station.
http://sf.streetsblog.org/wp-content...09/OAC-pic.jpg
http://sf.streetsblog.org/wp-content...09/OAC-pic.jpg

Construction pics:
http://extras.mnginteractive.com/liv...~7_GALLERY.JPG

http://extras.mnginteractive.com/liv...~3_GALLERY.JPG

Friend of mine who lives in Berkeley won't take mass transportation to Oakland International after dark - just too dangerous waiting on those platforms. He uses SFO instead, even though it's a longer train ride.

dimondpark Mar 7, 2012 9:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jg6544 (Post 5613002)
Friend of mine who lives in Berkeley won't take mass transportation to Oakland International after dark - just too dangerous waiting on those platforms.

Well, lots of people do take it night and they apparently do okay.

Quote:

He uses SFO instead, even though it's a longer train ride.
That platform is eerily desolate during most of the day and night--even the walk to that platform from the tram is pretty lonely and feels totally removed from the rest of the airport. I think Id prefer the coliseum bart if I had to choose based on feeling safe. But that's me.

M II A II R II K Mar 8, 2012 9:32 PM

California’s Bullet Train — A Fresh Start and a Change in Direction


March 7th, 2012

By Ken Orski

Read More: http://www.infrastructureusa.org/cal...-in-direction/

Quote:

A new strategy is beginning to emerge toward California’s embattled high-speed rail venture. The strategy is designed to rescue the project from a possible defeat at the hands of the state legislature, gain friends and supporters among local transportation agencies, win converts among independent analysts and turn around a largely skeptical public. The plan combines the existing commitment to proceed with construction of the first rail segment in the Central Valley with near-term actions aimed at upgrading rail facilities at both ends of the proposed LA-to-SF high-speed line. Specifically, the so-called “bookend” strategy will involve “blending” high-speed rail service with commuter rail service in existing Bay Area and Southern California rail corridors.

At the northern end of the line, between San Francisco and San Jose, bullet trains would share track with Caltrain commuter trains. Both would benefit from new investments in electrification, signaling systems, bridge replacements, passing tracks and grade crossings elimination. Similar type of improvements would be introduced at the Los Angeles/Orange County/San Diego ends of the line, benefitting LA’s Metrolink and other Southern California commuter rail and transit systems. Improving the urban “bookends” of the system will make it possible to increase the speed of local commuter trains and thus bring immediate benefits to large segments of California’s urban population. It will be a good investment whether or not the overall $98 billion high-speed rail project ever goes forward, said Will Kempton, chief executive of the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) and Chairman of the independent Peer Review Group advising the High Speed Rail Authority.

The investments will be funded with a portion of Proposition 1A funds, supplemented by matching funds from local government agencies. Up to $2.3 billion in bond money and its $950 million “interconnectivity” fund would be committed to these near term improvements according to well-informed sources. This would provide approximately $1.4 billion for Southern California and $900 million for the Bay Area, assuming a 60/40 split. Another $2.7 billion has been already set aside for the 130-mile Central Valley segment, leaving roughly $4 billion of Proposition 1A money for future HSR construction. The new strategy has evolved from discussions held by the High Speed Rail Authority’s new chairman, Dan Richard with the Governor and his fellow board members. In a conversation we had with Chairman Richard several weeks ago, he was frank to admit that significant changes must be made in the Authority’s way of doing business if the bullet train project is to retain the support of the state legislature, overcome the skepticism of independent critics and turn around public opinion. The Authority must find ways, in the Governor’s words, to do things “better, faster and cheaper.”

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electricron Mar 9, 2012 1:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by M II A II R II K (Post 5620736)
California’s Bullet Train — A Fresh Start and a Change in Direction
http://www.infrastructureusa.org/cal...-in-direction/
The Authority must find ways, in the Governor’s words, to do things “better, faster and cheaper.”

I like the Bookends solution for moving forwards. CHSR never intended to run 200 mph where commuter rail agencies operated anyways.

DJM19 Mar 9, 2012 2:56 AM

Well the bookends were always going to be built, but I guess this just assures people. People just need to understand that track building must begin in open land where the trains can be tested. They will never be able to test up to 250mph in a metropolitan area.

electricron Mar 9, 2012 1:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DJM19 (Post 5621155)
Well the bookends were always going to be built, but I guess this just assures people. People just need to understand that track building must begin in open land where the trains can be tested. They will never be able to test up to 250mph in a metropolitan area.

There's a difference to what is proposed now than in the past. Now, Bookends means using share tracks in a common right-of way, in the past it was using dedicated tracks in an expanded common right-of way.
If that is confusing, that the equivalent to the difference between a street having up to four lanes vs two parallel two lane streets. And that one street doesn't necessarily have four lanes, it could be as little as two lanes.

Using shared tracks in urban areas is a significant difference than using dedicated tracks.

pesto Mar 9, 2012 8:03 PM

The logic is still to build ONLY the bookends. The part in the middle is useless until there is real evidence that cars and air can't handle the load faster and cheaper.

But delaying the middle should give the people a good view of how long it really takes for HSR to travel through huge metro areas vs. what the proponents claim. Maybe we'll all be positively impressed.

aquablue Mar 13, 2012 1:10 AM

How much time will this new approach add on to the SF-LA trip time?

I hope to God that they keep it competitive with airlines and that this cheaper solution won't slow the trains down too much.

I hate to see this value engineering. If you are going to build a HSR line, just build it properly, otherwise don't bother.

DJM19 Mar 13, 2012 1:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aquablue (Post 5624796)
How much time will this new approach add on to the SF-LA trip time?

I hope to God that they keep it competitive with airlines and that this cheaper solution won't slow the trains down too much.

I hate to see this value engineering. If you are going to build a HSR line, just build it properly, otherwise don't bother.

Legally, it cant add any time. The legislation has very specific time requirements on how long it can take to go from LA to SF. The blended method is only being used in "urban" areas as far as I can tell...Areas where the track will be upgraded to handle speed of up to 110mph most likely. Though the train will still not go that fast through a neighborhood. The real time saving is in the open areas.


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