Monday, September 03, 2012

Another High Speed Rail Plan

The San Diego Union- Tribune reports on yet another high speed rail plan not unlike the HSR "Train to Nowhere" the state legislature recently approved funding for. This one is supposedly being privately funded, but they want the loan backed by taxpayer money. If the project fails, taxpayers pay off the loan.

A high speed rail line from Victorville to Las Vegas doesn't sound like much of a money maker to me. I'd normally tell them to have at it except, when it fails, taxpayers are responsible.

Makes me wonder if some of the folks that ask for these loans just want to line their own pockets and simply default- at taxpayer expense- when time comes to pay the bill?


At 8:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's hardly a train to nowhere. You can't compare it to the Alaskan bridge and expect to be taken seriously.

At 8:16 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

The state's HSR plan is often referred to as such since it's being started where relatively few will use it. After the beginning construction, further funding is doubtful so it's likely that's as far as it will go.

This private plan is much the same. Not enough people will use it to make it worthwhile.

At 8:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If there was high speed rail service available right now from SF to LA, I would personally use it several times a year.

At 8:31 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

"If" is one thing as it's unlikely to happen. If it does, it will be decades from now.

It will also be cheaper to fly, at least according to those in the know, so at least that train won't be very crowded.

At 8:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The price of flights has continued to rise, and I don't see any reason to believe that this trend will reverse. Odds are, the airlines will cut back on the HSR direct routes and simply concentrate on everything else.

BTW, right now, it is much cheaper to take the high speed rail in the Northeast corridor than flying the same route.

At 8:57 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

And there's no reason to believe ticket prices for HSR won't go up even faster.

I've read the NE corridor is the only place in the country where rail of any kind either pays for itself or at least not subsidized as much as elsewhere.

At 9:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reason it's successful is because it's more convenient than air travel. If the LA-SF route can achieve the same, then there's no reason not to believe it won't be just as successful.

At 10:51 AM, Anonymous Realistic said...

The idea of SF to LA rail is nice. And I notice, in almost all situations, how supporters of HSR will bring it (or a similar proposal) up.

The reality is this: there is no current plan for HSR from SF to LA. The idea that, sometime down the road there might be a SF-LA HSR does not justify unrelated terrible HSR plans.

It should also be pointed out that HSR does not always mean "cool futuristic technology." In some instances it just means dedicated rail lines that have very few crossing points.

All of this would be funny, if the state of california weren't in so much debt that the average person educated in california (by the state no less!) is barely able to comprehend how bad of a situation we are in.

I'd love some future-tech HSR from SF-LA (and for that matter, turn it into a wicked awesome future-tech HSR network, going also to LV and other important places), but the only way such a thing will ever be successful is if we first engage in serious state and federal government reform.

At 10:55 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

The idea of SF to LA rail is nice..

Keep in mind we already have rail service from SF to LA. It's just not real fast.

At 4:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course there is a plan for an LA to SF route. In fact, it is the premiere route. But it obviously won't be completed in the first phase.


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