Skip to comments.The Great Train of China: Longest high-speed rail line in the world is launched
Posted on 12/26/2012 10:06:23 PM PST by MinorityRepublican
The line, which runs roughly the equivalent distance of a journey between London and Gibraltar, will halve the travelling time from the country's capital Beijing to Guangzhou
The first trains have taken to the track on the world's longest high-speed rail line which stretches a staggering 1,400 miles across China.
The line, which runs roughly the equivalent distance of a journey between London and Gibraltar, will halve the travelling time from the country's capital Beijing to Guangzhou, an economic hub in the south.
The first train along the 2,298km track set off from Beijing at 9am with a train heading in the opposite direction an hour later.
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
They build it in the time it takes us to put the EIR and EIS out to bid
Another piece of junk that will cost passengers’ lives. Has the world forgotten Wenzhou that quickly?
Incidentally, the average speed calculated from the distance cited is 178.5 mph (287 km/h), rather than 186 mph (300 km/h). It’s impossible to maintain an average speed that fast anyway if all 35 stops are servedyou’d be stopping every 41 miles on average.
This will have some spectacular crashes and some staggering death counts
The first train along the 2,298km track set off from Beijing at 9am with a train heading in the opposite direction an hour later.
At least they won’t run into each other...
Although I would hate to ride all that way
Good. The more public works the Chinese have to subsidize, the less economically competitive they become.
“High speed” or “Low speed”, it’s all Amtrak to me.
I’ll part ways with most Freepers on this one. We are falling further and further behind the rest of the world as far as transportation goes. Say what you will about Europe but their transportation has ours beat hands down. And don’t start talking subsidies - taxpayers pay for airports, air traffic control, FAA, etc.; taxpayers pay for highways for trucking. If we subsidized rail travel at 10% of the amount we give to aviation and highways we might have a transportation system that wouldn’t have us at the bottom of the heap anymore.
Dat you Willie?
Public transportation requires a combination of high population density and common destination. It also doesn’t hurt public transportation ridership numbers to make private travel extremely expensive. Europe accomodates all three.
The U.S. only has that in the NE, where incidently, we have all kinds of public transportation.
Take a look at the airport departure/arrival boards. To do that with even high-speed rail would mean turning tens of millions of work hours into butt-on-train hours.
As for subsidizing, it would be far better to end all subsidies, instead of trying to make offsets.
Train travel worked great in this country with a lot less population density. I had to travel from VA to AL two years ago. Airline schedule had me going through Atlanta to Memphis to AL. Total travel time was 12 hours, including airport waits, TSA, etc. Took the train instead, overnight with sleeper compartment, from Manassas, VA to Tuscaloosa. 15 hours travel time, much of it asleep. Meals paid for, able to walk around the train and saved $350, including tip for the porter.
I say day 12.
Anybody want to take that bet?
Rail travel in China is VERY different from rail travel in the US. American rail lines can never be profitable, because they can never consistently fill trains. Chinese rail lines, on almost every departure and destination, are universally nearly filled to capacity. They don't need subsidies. (But even if they did, China could afford it. They have no Social Programs, no major unions, no law lobby that triples costs with lawsuits, and a very meager environmental lobby to slow down progress.)
High-speed rail may have a role to play here and there, but its true enemies are NIBMYism and unions, not conservative disinterest.
With all due respect, this is not the place to sell Red China. I could quote a goodly number of sources that tell of the incredible corruption surrounding their high-speed rail program, and that would merely be scratching the surface. If you put these people in charge of the US space program, the Panama Canal (which Clinton put Red China in charge of anyway) et cetera, you would have a lot of disasters due to that central planningand it is insulting to compare anything in Red China to the USA’s successes, frankly.
If you could take a regular train (not high speed) 500 miles or less it is usually quicker than flying since you don’t have to be at the train station hours ahead of time for security, etc. If your destination is a downtown in a city you save even more time since you don’t have to find an airport shuttle,etc. You don’t have to wait for your baggage on a train since you usually have it with you. You don’t sit on a tarmac waiting to take off or waiting for a gate to open. No long lines getting off the train waiting for everyone ahead of you to get their carry-ons. High speed trains will up that 500 mile limit to closer to 1000. Don’t get me wrong, I love aviation (private pilot myself) but train travel is 1000% more comfortable than those tiny airline seats.
I don’t buy that. Besides, air travel had government support in a major way since the 1950s, which is why I am not very “attuned” to it; the private railroads could not compete because of what the government was doing to them aside from funding the airports (taxation, overregulation, on top of the union pressures; NIMBYism can’t stand in the way of an extant active rail line). It’s not like the private railroads did not try to improve in terms of speed, but every speed improvement was met by a federal regulation with regards to signaling, track “classes”, crashworthiness of passenger and locomotives, and so on.
And I must confess that I have the same antipathy towards the highways that I have towards airports; I regard them as government trust fund babies, especially when they ought to be able to stand on their own two feet as it were, financially speaking, instead of having the federal and state governments throw tax dollars at them. It might be fun for a little while to be able to drive at an average speed well over 130 mph on the highway, but with all the potential obstacles, you will find very few who wish to attempt it, and the necessary tires (more expensive due to the speed rating and faster-wearing to boot), suspension settings, engine tunings, larger brakes et al won’t make for a comfortable or cheap journey anyhow.
>>>Ill part ways with most Freepers on this one.
You certainly have with this one.
>>>We are falling further and further behind the rest of the world as far as transportation goes.
Many say the same thing regarding health care metrics: life-expectancy and infant-mortality, to name but two. They’re wrong. You are, too.
>>>Say what you will about Europe but their transportation has ours beat hands down.
I hear that often. Especially from Europeans. What I don’t hear is any cognizance on their part of a connection between their sleek high-speed trains and their +20% chronic structural unemployment, or their gleaming new airports and their noticeable lack of innovation in medical devices, pharmaceuticals, information technology, etc.
Don’t be so quick to envy others. Know this:
Every activity in an economy has an opportunity cost: if it chooses to do more of “X”, it has less remaining to do more of “Y”, and vice-versa. Europe has made its choice, and I don’t see that they are any better off because of it . . . though don’t expect the rank-and-file leftist European to admit it.
In the meantime, you can read this:
“The U.S. infrastructure argument that crumbles upon examination”
I disagree that it was “this country” in terms of the choice of individuals that “chose” air travel. If it were, then all of our airports, regional and international, would have been privately owned and operated and never received a dime of tax money in revenue. But instead it was central planning and government funding that brought it aboutsame with highwayswhile private railroads (in both infrastructure and rolling stock), which helped the country win WWI and WWII, were regulated and taxed nearly into oblivion, certainly 100 percent in terms of their passenger business and for the most part with their freight business.
BTW, I think you overestimated California HSR, whose last total costs were figured to be $100 billion (or $125 million per mile based on the 800-mile estimate, which by itself is about five times more expensive than what they spend on high speed rail elsewhere on the planet save in England). $500 billion works out to the unheard-of per-unit-length cost of $625 million per mile, and so far, the most expensive high-speed rail proposal is Amtrak’s one for the duplicate Northeast Corridor or “next-generation” service currently estimated at $151 billion, or (based on 438 route miles between Washington and Boston) a whopping $345 million per mile on average. These kind of cost estimates seem to only happen in this country; in France, they spend about $12 million to $20 million per mile.
Going back to the 1960s, the federal government was promising that the Pennsylvania Railroad’s Metroliner (later Penn Central) would eventually travel at 160 mph, BTW (and “eventually” did not mean waiting until the third decade of the twenty-first century).
>>>>Wow, where do you get your stats? From the stat fairy? EU unemployment is 11.1% overall and it is only that high because of Greece at 26% and some of the other eastern european countries.
Spain is in a depression and probably has 40% unemployment, perhaps more. Same with Italy and Portugal. You’re swallowing their official statistics rather than looking under the hood at what the numbers show. EU numbers reflect “workforce participation”, not how many people actually have jobs. In the US, if someone is in fact unemployed, but kicks backs and gives up, preferring to live with his parents until things change, our numbers expunge him from “workforce participation” and he is simply not counted among the unemployed, making our numbers appear better than they really are. Same with Europe except more so. European welfare states have many more categories — “in training”, “receiving gov’t medical care”, etc. — in which someone can be in fact without a job, but not be counted as unemployed. And since their “safety nets” are so much more entrenched than ours, they stay unemployed for years, not months. Europe also has much more “under-employment” or “under-utilization” — workers seeking full-time jobs who can only work part-time or temporary jobs — than the US, though ObamaCare may equalize the US with the EU.
You’re just being naive and gullible by swallowing the official stats for Europe. You have to apply some economic knowledge to the numbers to ferret out the truth.
>>>They are among the world leaders in pharmaceuticals, etc. (what does this have to do with railroads?).
Dude, I can’t waste time with you. You are plainly ignorant of basic, 101-level economics. Once more (because I’m generous): OPPORTUNITY COST!!!!! Ever hear of it? If you have $10K and choose to go on a world cruise rather than attend a semester at college, then the opportunity cost of your cruise was: one semester at college. It’s the thing of next-highest-value that you gave up in order to do something else. In fact, in economics, that’s actually the meaning of the term “cost”; i.e., every cost is actually an opportunity cost.
Europe has decided in favor of ultra-high taxes to subsidize gleaming new airports and super-fast trains . . . which is why their opportunity cost — the thing they have given up in order to have those things — is entrepreneurship in pharma, medical devices, and computer technology.
>>>Have you ever stepped foot out of your own neighborhood? You obviously haven’t traveled if you think the U.S. has better transportation than Europe.
You’re an arrogant dunce. I never claimed the US has “better” transportation. I claimed Europe’s choice for gleaming transportation infrastructure at the opportunity cost of more dynamic and innovative entrepreneurship hasn’t left them better off, which is why not only Greece has fallen off a cliff, but Portugal, Italy, Ireland, and Spain are deeply in recession, or even depression, too; and both France and Germany are also considered “at risk” nations, especially France (The Economist magazine recently called France “the ticking time bomb in the EU”).
You’re quite wrong about Europe’s contributions to pharma. Most innovation over there occurs in US subsidiaries, or with US funding. Europe, however, does get the advantage of being able to use many US-designed pharma molecules and US-designed medical devices, so US innovation helps raise the standard of European medical care, at least in terms of potential patient outcomes. You haven’t done your homework on this.
If you check out various listings of the world’s cutting edge companies (Forbes traditionally has one such listing) you’ll see that European countries rank pretty low. Out of the top 50, there were only 9 from Europe. Most were from the US, with others from India, Japan, and China distant runners-up.
You will, if a high-speed rail line is introduced. The TSA will enforce the same level of security theater we now use for air travel.
I’ve taken the Spanish high speed AVE train on several occasions. It’s fast, comfortable and always leaves on-time, and I mean to the second. It’s so much pleasanter than air travel. I know all the arguments against doing it here, it’s just too bad we can’t make something like this work.
The federal government doesn’t want high speed rail anywhere except the northeastern seaboard. That is why they make it impossible for the many private railroads to even run conventional passenger service, never mind high-speed. In the past they used taxation; nowadays they use regulation.
Dat you Willie?
Did somebody go and get a new IP addy?
Not Willie, but I remember him when I was just a lurker...and I agreed with him.
As did horses. Everything is relative. Trains now have to compete with airplanes and interstates.
I had to travel from VA to AL two years ago. Airline schedule had me going through Atlanta to Memphis to AL. Total travel time was 12 hours, including airport waits, TSA, etc. Took the train instead, overnight with sleeper compartment, from Manassas, VA to Tuscaloosa. 15 hours travel time, much of it asleep. Meals paid for, able to walk around the train and saved $350, including tip for the porter.
Sounds nice, but I've never been able to find that kind of deal. Every time that I've ever looked at train travel, it was much more time and much more money than flying.
I presume that you did not require a rental car at your destination, as that would have quickly added enormously to the cost of driving there.
Each to his own, as long as I'm not paying for it through subsidies. And yes, that opinion applies to all forms of travel.
or could it be that people here in the vast nation don’t want to use 19th century technology as mode of transportation..
Paved roads date back as far as the fourth century BC. And IINM, automobiles also date back to the nineteenth century, so any arguments based on presumed obsolescence versus Luddism are not going to go anywhere, especially in the face of comparative technological advances. AFAICS, the primary arguments here ought to be based on regulation and taxation (as well as other government interference) being an impediment to private-sector implementation.