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  #381  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2021, 1:57 PM
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  #382  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2021, 4:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Busy Bee View Post
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You're not missing much.

Most anti-rail people complain about "subsidies" while ignoring all of the underused roads and highways, subsidies to airports, or even their own mortgage interest deductions or slightly exotic tax-avoidance mechanisms WSJ readers are likely to be familiar with like the 1031 Exchange.

I think the pretty modest goal of 5 trains per day per direction between adjacent cities (I'm talking about city pairs that currently have zero service, i.e. Nashville/Atlanta, Indianapolis/Columbus) and 2 trains per day per direction on the long-haul routes that are currently one per day or - gasp - the one every other day service pattern of The Cardinal, is a reasonable level of service. If we really want to get wild & crazy, talk about upgrading the 100-200 mile city pair routes to Class 6 to enable 110mph for the majority of the route.
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  #383  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2021, 5:17 PM
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Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist View Post
Athens included as agencies pick route for Atlanta-to-Charlotte high-speed rail line

By Dave Williams
July 13, 2021
Athens Banner Herald


Image courtesy of the Athens Banner-Herald.

"ATLANTA — Federal and Georgia transportation planners are looking to run a high-speed rail line connecting Atlanta and Charlotte, N.C., via Athens.

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and Georgia Department of Transportation, working with state transportation departments in North Carolina and South Carolina, have identified the 274-mile route as the “preferred corridor” for the Charlotte-to-Atlanta portion of a high-speed rail line that would continue northeast to Washington, D.C.

“The projected increases in population and economic growth for the Piedmont Atlantic Megaregion create a need for a carefully planned approach to improving rail infrastructure that will benefit Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, the southeastern United States and the nation,” the FRA wrote in its final environmental impact report on the project released last week..."

https://www.onlineathens.com/story/n...ns/7956790002/
Is this being planned for true high speed rail?

Also, why does it jog up to hit the Greenville airport but then not run through Greenville itself? As a fast growing city with a surprisingly dense/active urban core, it seems like a miss to not have a station near downtown.
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  #384  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2021, 6:45 PM
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Originally Posted by SoCalKid View Post
Is this being planned for true high speed rail?

Also, why does it jog up to hit the Greenville airport but then not run through Greenville itself? As a fast growing city with a surprisingly dense/active urban core, it seems like a miss to not have a station near downtown.
They have punted on the question of speed or propulsion for now (it will be steel wheel on steel rail at least, not maglev or hyperloop) and they have indicated that both 125mph diesel operation or 220mph electric operation are possibilities. There is a Tier 2 study that will look at this question. Plenty of factors to consider - is it a standalone corridor, or do you want trains to extend south of Atlanta/north of Charlotte on existing freight lines? Is there funding available to build an electric traction system? Etc etc.

Probably they are trying to avoid a situation like that in California, where a guaranteed end-to-end travel time was written into law by Prop 1A (2h38m from LA to SF, IIRC). In order to satisfy this requirement, CHSRA has to literally move heaven and earth to create arrow-straight alignments even through urban parts of Fresno and Bakersfield and through mountainous areas.

This is one factor in the astronomical costs of CAHSR - design standards written into law that cannot be relaxed in the most difficult areas.
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  #385  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2021, 7:08 PM
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Originally Posted by SoCalKid View Post
Is this being planned for true high speed rail?

Also, why does it jog up to hit the Greenville airport but then not run through Greenville itself? As a fast growing city with a surprisingly dense/active urban core, it seems like a miss to not have a station near downtown.
This is the preferred route for a true HSR line. There were two other routes, along I-85 right of way and along the existing NS right of way that were routed closer to all the intermediate cities downtowns. The reason this is the preferred route is that it is much, much cheaper to build, and with true HSR capabilities, gets far more passengers riding the trains.
Take the time to read the EIS Tier 1 study where all this is explained in about 300 pages I really do not wish to repeat. Here's the link.
https://railroads.dot.gov/environmen...ail-tier-1-eis

Never-the-less, they are finding it difficult to raise all the funds needed, so the are suggesting not building the electrical infrastructure, double tracking the entire corridor, nor buying true HSR trainsets - initially. They want to piecemeal the project's construction, which probably means not finishing it in a timely manner, not finishing it at all, or never even start actual construction of any of it. And even if they do start building it, prolonged re-construction activities means slower performance with continuing construction in construction zones.

Not good in imho. Fund it, build it, operate it as designed is the best way to proceed, or not build it at all.

Last edited by electricron; Jul 15, 2021 at 7:18 PM.
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  #386  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2021, 7:11 PM
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This is a project I admittedly don't know much about and haven't been following. Looking forward to pouring through that doc.
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  #387  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2021, 11:30 AM
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Here is another article about the proposed Charlotte - Atlanta high-speed rail.

Charlotte-Atlanta rail line has a route. All it needs now is $6 billion to $8 billion.

By Erik Spanberg
Charlotte Business Journal
Jul 15, 2021

"Recommendations for a high-speed rail path between Charlotte and Atlanta include a hefty price estimate of $6 billion to $8 billion..."

https://www.bizjournals.com/charlott...price-tag.html
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  #388  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2021, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist View Post
Here is another article about the proposed Charlotte - Atlanta high-speed rail.

Charlotte-Atlanta rail line has a route. All it needs now is $6 billion to $8 billion.

By Erik Spanberg
Charlotte Business Journal
Jul 15, 2021

"Recommendations for a high-speed rail path between Charlotte and Atlanta include a hefty price estimate of $6 billion to $8 billion..."

https://www.bizjournals.com/charlott...price-tag.html
If it could get built at anywhere near that price tag it would be a quite reasonable cost for a major HSR corridor.
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  #389  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2021, 9:04 PM
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Looks like everybody has a plan these days...

Quote:
Northeast Corridor Commission Announces CONNECT NEC 2035Washington, DC(July 14, 2021)—The Northeast Corridor Commission released CONNECT NEC 2035 (C35) today—a 15-year plan representing the most ambitious reinvestment program in the NEC’s history and a new way of planning: a multi-agency, multi-year, shared action plan guided by a long-term vision. The state governments of the Northeast, the federal government, eight commuter rail agencies, and Amtrak worked together through the NEC Commission to develop a detailed and efficient sequencing of infrastructure investments covering 150 projects and capital renewal efforts along the corridor.
Quote:
C35 is the first phase of the long-term vision for the corridor established in the Federal Railroad Administration’s 2017 NEC FUTURE plan, making significant improvements to NEC rail service for both existing and new riders, on both commuter rail systems and Amtrak. The $117 billion C35 plan would result in a renewed NEC with the following benefits for a thriving Northeast region:

•Improve mobility and connections

o Travel time savings valued at nearly $140 million annually for intercity and commuter rail passengers corridor-wide

o 26-minute faster trips for Acela riders traveling from DC to NYC & 28-minute faster trips from NYC to Boston

o 25-minute faster trips for express commuters traveling from New Haven to NYC

o Daily Amtrak NEC service increases of 33% and doubled service for several commuter railroads

o New one-seat ride services in NJ, NY, and CT into Penn Station New York
The executive summary can be found here.

The full report can be found here.






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  #390  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2021, 12:21 PM
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  #391  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2021, 2:40 PM
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Essex Junction Seeks Funds to Renovate Amtrak Station

Associated Press
July 18, 2021

"ESSEX, Vt. (AP) — The village of Essex Junction is seeking to improve its Amtrak station.

The chair of the board of trustees told WCAX-TV that the board has requested $3 million in federal funding to renovate the train station and give it a modern look.

“We really want to make sure that when people come and see the train station it’s something that they feel comfortable stopping at and not something they feel scared or intimidated (by)," said Andrew Brown, village president and chairman of the board..."

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-sta...amtrak-station
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  #392  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2021, 3:06 PM
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  #393  
Old Posted Jul 23, 2021, 5:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Mister Uptempo View Post
How could it possibly cost $117 billion to shave just one hour off the entire 438 mile corridor??? They should be able to build an entirely new HSR line with a dedicated ROW for that! This will result in a train that averages just 73 MPH (6 hours over 438 miles). California High Speed Rail, for all it's problems, is building an entirely new line of similar length (including land acquisition) through major cities for the same cost, and it will average nearly twice the speed.
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  #394  
Old Posted Jul 23, 2021, 5:05 PM
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Originally Posted by SoCalKid View Post
How could it possibly cost $117 billion to shave just one hour off the entire 438 mile corridor??? They should be able to build an entirely new HSR line with a dedicated ROW for that! This will result in a train that averages just 73 MPH (6 hours over 438 miles). California High Speed Rail, for all it's problems, is building an entirely new line of similar length (including land acquisition) through major cities for the same cost, and it will average nearly twice the speed.
I am not defending the high cost of building infrastructure but this is the most densely populated region of the country and has some of the most expensive labor costs. Some of the infrastructure is more than one hundred years old.

The Gateway tunnel, alone, is $15B - $20B. Replacing the 148 year-old Baltimore & Potomac tunnel is estimated to cost another $4B.

If we ignore investing in infrastructure for a half century, we are going end up paying for it at some point.
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  #395  
Old Posted Jul 23, 2021, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist View Post
I am not defending the high cost of building infrastructure but this is the most densely populated region of the country and has some of the most expensive labor costs. Some of the infrastructure is more than one hundred years old.

The Gateway tunnel, alone, is $15B - $20B. Replacing the 148 year-old Baltimore & Potomac tunnel is estimated to cost another $4B.

If we ignore investing in infrastructure for a half century, we are going end up paying for it at some point.
The age excuse gets pretty lame at times. Age of various older New York City transportation structures.
High Bridge 1848
Brooklyn Bridge 1883
Macombs Dam Bridge 1895
Third Avenue Bridge 1898
Spuyten Duyvil Bridge 1899
Willis Avenue Bridge 1901
Williamsburg Bridge 1903
145th Street Bridge 1905
Pelham Bay Bridge 1908
Joralemon Street Tunnel 1908
Manhattan Bridge 1909
Queensboro Bridge 1909
Madison Avenue Bridge 1910
North River Tunnels 1910
East River Tunnels 1910
Hell Gate Bridge 1916
Structures underlined used by Amtrak.
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  #396  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2021, 1:19 PM
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Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist View Post
Here is another article about the proposed Charlotte - Atlanta high-speed rail.

Charlotte-Atlanta rail line has a route. All it needs now is $6 billion to $8 billion.

By Erik Spanberg
Charlotte Business Journal
Jul 15, 2021

"Recommendations for a high-speed rail path between Charlotte and Atlanta include a hefty price estimate of $6 billion to $8 billion..."

https://www.bizjournals.com/charlott...price-tag.html
I’m curious who is providing the cost estimates; the California HSRA?

I don’t think there’s any doubt that the costs will be much higher. But if this is going to happen, now is the best time to get moving on this project.
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  #397  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2021, 3:24 PM
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Originally Posted by urban_encounter View Post
I’m curious who is providing the cost estimates; the California HSRA?

I don’t think there’s any doubt that the costs will be much higher. But if this is going to happen, now is the best time to get moving on this project.
Labor and the price of land is cheaper in the Southeast and there isn't a 4,000 foot mountain pass to cross. There also aren't the seismic issues and faults to deal with.
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  #398  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2021, 5:01 PM
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This is a project I admittedly don't know much about and haven't been following. Looking forward to pouring through that doc.
Sorry, I posted the EIS for DC to Charlotte vs Charlotte to Atlanta earlier. Here are the correct links.
http://www.dot.ga.gov/InvestSmart/Ra...%20Summary.pdf
http://www.dot.ga.gov/IS/Rail/AtlantatoCharlotte

An important point to consider with the up to $8.4 Billion estimate by the Tier I EIS, they left many considerations and projected costs for the latter Tier 2 EIS, including to electrify initially, verify approach into Charlotte, and choose the approach into Atlanta. Places were costs can skyrocket very quickly on whatever choices are made.

Last edited by electricron; Jul 24, 2021 at 5:27 PM.
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  #399  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2021, 5:41 PM
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Yeah, the 6-8 billion estimate is likely low by nearly half. I'd estimate a electrified true HSR corridor to cost more in the 10-15 billion range, depending on the extent of improvements and modifications to the shared urban approaches. That being said, I think even that estimate is a pretty good deal for a priject, that being located in the heart of the South, will serve as a poster child to convince all political stripes to "get on board" with 21st century highspeed rail connections.
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  #400  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2021, 12:29 AM
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Yeah, the 6-8 billion estimate is likely low by nearly half. I'd estimate a electrified true HSR corridor to cost more in the 10-15 billion range, depending on the extent of improvements and modifications to the shared urban approaches. That being said, I think even that estimate is a pretty good deal for a project, that being located in the heart of the South, will serve as a poster child to convince all political stripes to "get on board" with 21st century highspeed rail connections.
Whereas I agree getting the first true HSR project built is important for encouraging other lines to be built, who is going to build them. After Georgia spends half whatever it takes to build the HSR line to Charlotte, or whatever its share is, let's suggest $8 Billion, will they have another $8 Billion for another line to Savanah, and another $8 Billion for another line to Birmingham, and another $8 Billion for every other line?

Georgia is rich relatively, but it is not that rich to afford new HSR lines emitting in 5 to 6 directions from Atlanta.

If California can not afford to spend more than $8 Billion to date for CHSR, how do you expect Georgia to be able to afford the same mount?

The more lines you include into the SEHSR system, the more likely single tracking, diesel powered trains only reaching speeds of 125 mph is all they will ever build.
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