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More on high-speed rail

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  • Christopher Miller
    Two links I forgot about in my previous post: The US Federal Railway Administration main page, with some more links: http://www.fra.dot.gov/ A schematic
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 17, 2009
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      Two links I forgot about in my previous post:

      The US Federal Railway Administration main page, with some more links:
      http://www.fra.dot.gov/

      A schematic graphic at a site called The Infrastructurist, comparing
      distances, populations served, speed and cost for several high-speed
      rail projects around the world:
      http://www.infrastructurist.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/high-speed-rail-boom-1024x665.jpg

      Plus a short piece posted today at The Infrastructurist:

      =========================================================

      Ed Rendell: “Let’s END Air Travel of Less Than 500 Miles”
      Posted on Friday April 17th by Jebediah Reed

      Thus spake the governor during his keynote speech at the Regional Plan
      Association conference today in Manhattan. He suggested we think about
      the Acela. Invest some money in it now, he said, so that it can
      actually be a high speed train instead of a really snazzy looking
      train that goes 82 MPH like normal trains do everywhere and have for
      more than a century. Approximate quote: “If we cut the travel time
      between New York and Washington from the current 2 hours 35 minutes to
      an hour and a half, would anyone *ever* take an air shuttle again on
      this route?”

      This was offered in the context of the US really needing to build out
      a modern passenger rail system — so the NYC-DC example was
      illustrative of what he thought should be the case across the country.
      “Let’s *end* air travel of less than 500 miles,” he concluded.

      An admirable idea — one that Obama expressed in slightly more gentle
      terms yesterday. And it’s great to have politicians of this stature
      saying it.

      But, out of curiosity, what is the airline industry saying about this?
      Politicians calling for the elimination of a major chunk of one of the
      country’s major industries? There aren’t *too* many precedents for
      that. Does anyone know — are the airlines and/or industry bodies and/
      or airplane makers starting to kick and scream?

      (CM: Among the oft-cited negatives of air travel compared to rail, I
      might add that while travelling by airplane on flights into or out of
      Washington National Airport you are obliged, while within a half hour
      of DC, to remain seated and are thus forbidden to use the washrooms.
      This is pretty unique to air travel, due to the 2001/09/11 attacks.
      Trains (like other ground transport) are immune to this
      inconvenience...)

      =========================================================

      Christopher Miller
      Montreal QC Canada
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