Skip to comments.A Democratic governor just quashed Democrats’ dreams of high-speed rail in America
Posted on 02/13/2019 7:16:09 AM PST by Oldeconomybuyer
President Barack Obama secured $8 billion in his 2009 economic stimulus package to start building toward the dream of true high-speed trains whisking passengers between major American cities. It was a paltry amount compared to the hundreds of billions it would actually take to fulfill that dream, but it was considered a serious down payment.
At the time, Obamas transportation secretary, Ray LaHood, said, Im not a historian, but I know this: One of the legacies for this administration, for the president and the vice president, will be high-speed rail. That will be their transportation legacy.
A decade later, little progress has been made on getting the country any closer to having the type of modernized train system popular in Europe and Asia.
On Tuesday the dream got its harshest blow yet: California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) announced he was scaling back plans for high-speed rail between Los Angeles and San Francisco.
"Abandoning high-speed rail entirely means we will have wasted billions and billions of dollars with nothing but broken promises, partially filled commitments and lawsuits to show for it, Newsom said.
So what about what LaHood said about it being Obamas legacy?
It cant be his legacy if it doesnt get carried out, he said.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
He gets to keep $3.5 billion in Federal Funds?
A democrap governor just squashed the financial windfalls of a number of corrupt greedy politicians and corrupt greedy investors.
Obama and his Train to Nowhere.
The money went to lawyers and unions.
But what about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the green new deal plan for trains?
Is Gavin Newsome a rogue Democrat?
Could there be civil war in the Democrat party, with some more practical people vs. purists such as Ocasio-Cortez?
The wisdom of Homer Simpson.
Willie Green is deeply saddened.
The insanely over-priced and over-budget Cal Rail had no chance of ever being anything like successful.
Newsome was right to pull the plug.
Rail, itself, is not a bad idea. It needs sane engineering, private corporate management, and use the existing rail network. PRIVATIZE passenger service.
For under 500 miles or so, rail can be faster than flying — with all the inefficient overhead in time wasted that flying entails.
Central city to central city, with no cabs, limos, or long distances to big airports can be faster or equal without all the “security” and stupidity that today’s Flying Greyhound Busses with wings offer.
Rail WILL be attractive once again — in time, but only as a business for profit.
A dream? Its a one hundred billion dollar nightmare! And the price keeps going up. In the twenty-first century they are investing hundreds of billions in nineteenth century travel. And as the icing on the cake, the California version goes from nowhere to nowhere.
Not only should it be killed, prosecutions and jailings should follow.
Newsom is saying the right thing here, but dont be fooled folks. His state desperately needs money. Decades of allowing millions of illegal aliens has left California financially strapped. Also, lets not forget Newsom is an ultra-liberal. A lefty with free access to billions of dollars is a disaster waiting to happen!
A Democrat governor just punched Occasional’s GND in the kiester!
Picture of a train wreck happening before your very eyes.
I know you mention privatizing but that can’t be stressed enough. Amtrak is a unionized mess. It is run poorly (frequently late) and the service is generally shoddy. Even the lounges for passengers in terminals where there is high demand (like DC’s Unions station and Penn Station in NY) are throw backs to the 1950s. Good luck getting the unions out of train travel. They are deeply entrenched and are, naturally, the main problem with it.
Round-trip airfare between SBO and LAX is $200.
There are about 3.66 million passengers annually between SBO and LAX per wikipedia. Assuming they're all round-trip passengers, that comes to $732 million in annual revenue generated by this route.
Assuming no inflation, and assuming all that air traffic would opt to take the high-speed rail line at the same price point (a truly heroic assumption), it would take about 100 years to break even on this boondoggle. This excludes the costs/unemployment etc. associated with zero airline traffic.
These high speed trains are only good for short distances.. There great in Europe where your only going a few hundred mile
I’ve always been of the opinion that if the govt got out of the way (fed and state) that we could have high speed rail in the US within a decade that was profitable.
I would hire the guys that run the Japanese bullet trains to engineer it and aim for an extra 100mph.
Always felt the Interstate Medians would in most cases be perfect for two lines of rail. So parallel I80, I95, etc.
Phase 1 would be linking Chicago to NY, Boston to Miami, and Seattle to SD with the most direct route available. Slower moving spurs if a major city wasn’t on that direct path.
Next phase would be Chicago to Austin via St. Louis and St. Louis to San Fran.
Phase 3 Maybe Cleveland to Houston, DC to St Louis, Chicago to Miami would be in there. Most major cities would fall within one of those routes.
I’d prefer it to air travel myself and at the speeds we’re talking it wouldn’t be a huge hurtle on time - could see a lot of overnight hauls.
Course the Govt would never get out of the way.
Central city to central city, with no cabs, limos, or long distances to big airports can be faster or equal without all the security and stupidity that todays Flying Greyhound Busses with wings offer.
I would consider the trip to and from the airport an approximate wash for most travelers compared to the trip to and from the train station. Less security theater resulting in less time spent in station is a big plus on those shorter trips though. More comfortable seating should be a big selling point for people considering traveling by train.
High speed rail MUST be elevated. You cannot have Ma & Pa Kettle getting liquefied by a train doing 250mph on and “at grade road crossing”.
That is the issue, and will drive the costs up.
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