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Old Posted Dec 30, 2012, 1:12 AM
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hammersklavier hammersklavier is offline
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Originally Posted by aquablue View Post
No, it is not similar to Europe because they have improved their slower lines while putting in HSR lines at the same time.

Also, unlike European countries, he precluded adding HSR in the best HSR market in N. America and then suggested increasing speed by 1 mph per year on existing rail which is silly. Train speeds don't increase by 1 mph / year anywhere. Waiting 20 to 30 years to upgrade our slow rail to slightly higher speed rail before thinking of putting in proper HSR is a waste of time. This is because land prices will increase and will make any future HSR even more expensive to construct. So, no. I disagree vehemently. Any decent HSR train line will have a trickle down affect that will encourage more investment in slower regional branch lines as more passengers will be attracted to ride the system by the HSR trip times. However, in the case of the NEC, the second slower layer is currently in place (the current line). It is also being considered for 160mph acela operation in certain sections in NJ (up from 135mph top speed). So, again 1 mph/year improvement on the NEC is ludicrous. This is where HSR needs to be and it has the best business case. Amtrak has taken 70 per cent market share on the NY-DC route due to post 9-11 airport hassles. It could increase up to 90 percent + if HSR was added.
This post is just dead wrong.

In conjunct with ardecila's post above, which gives us Example 1 (Germany), let us remember Example 2--the United Kingdom. There is only one true greenfield high-speed line in the UK, constructed in the early 1990s as the British approach to the Channel Tunnel. The other two main lines, the East Coast and West Coast, are upgraded traditional lines (the former LNER and LMS mains, respectively). Example 3 is Spain, which did not begin construction of its high speed lines in earnest until the 1990s. It began improvements to its traditional network in the '80s. Example 5 would be Italy...The only European nation that hews to your paradigm might be France, purely due to the age of LGV Sud-Est; most Western European nations had begun extensively improving their traditional networks in the '80s, and (outside of France) did not begin serious HSR implementation until the '90s.
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