CA California CAHSR System

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High-speed rail gets a four-year delay (California)

Postby Passenger » Thu May 19, 2016 9:47 am

High-speed rail gets a four-year delay
Politico

... The first segment of California’s first-in-the-nation bullet-train project, currently scheduled for completion in 2018, will not be done until the end of 2022, according to a contract revision the Obama administration quietly approved this morning. That initial 119-mile segment through the relatively flat and empty Central Valley was considered the easiest-to-build stretch of a planned $64 billion line, which is eventually supposed to zip passengers between San Francisco and Los Angeles in under three hours. So the four-year delay is sure to spark new doubts about whether the state’s—and perhaps the nation’s—most controversial and expensive infrastructure project will ever reach its destination. ...


I will hazard the opinion that I have expressed before -- There never was any serious political will to have it happen. Just a bit of pretext for plunder from day 1.
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Re: High-speed rail gets a four-year delay (California)

Postby mtuandrew » Fri May 20, 2016 11:48 am

Mod Note: Merged with existing topic.

Also, this is gonna take a lot of wind out of the sails of other HSR programs in America. On the plus side, at least Amtrak isn't waiting on CAHSR for Acela IIs anymore.
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Re: High-speed rail gets a four-year delay (California)

Postby gokeefe » Fri May 20, 2016 2:26 pm

Everyday that goes by in which this project continues construction is another day that it isn't dead.

In my opinion as long as they keep moving forward without further slippage I think this is going to happen. Everybody involved knows that the delays have been deliberately inflicted by third parties. CAHSR has preserved the project viability by conserving funds until permitting and litigation were resolved.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby deathtopumpkins » Sun May 22, 2016 8:47 am

I enjoyed CAHSR Blog's analysis of the announcement, which explains that essentially it is just recognizing the delays encountered in acquiring land, largely due to NIMBY efforts, and that actual construction is on-track, it just started later than anticipated.

I don't think this will have any significant effect on the project's prospects for completion. It may give opponents a little more fuel, but every day that goes by with shovels in the ground makes it harder to kill the project, and there are definitely plenty of shovels in the ground.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Tue Mar 07, 2017 10:37 am

This Editorial from Monday's Wall Street Journal is presented here in the spirit of "We report, you decide":

http://www.wsj.com/articles/chaos-choo- ... 1488755853

Fair Use:

...The Obama Administration may have left town, but its legacy lives on across the country in Sacramento. So congratulations to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao for putting a stop to some dubious grant-making for San Francisco Democrats by a former Obama official in another imbroglio for California’s bullet train


The CAHSR project has been a "whipping boy" of The Journal's Editorial Board ever since the project was first announced. Even the first phase to be under construction, the Cowchilla-Shafter segment, has been branded by the Board as the "nowhere to nowhere" when it would appear to make great sense to have such as a "test bed" offering less construction cost, less NIMBY attacks, and a chance to test the high speed capacities.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby Jeff Smith » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:34 pm

http://www.travelpulse.com/news/car-ren ... ality.html

I'm still a doubter.

California is getting ready to lay tracks on the first segment of its much-anticipated California High Speed Rail Authority (CHSR) project, which will eventually connect San Francisco with Los Angeles via high-speed rail.

The finance committee for the State of California has approved a request by the CHSRA to spend $2.6 billion to lay its first track in California’s Central Valley. Specifically, CHSRA will be able to ask the state’s Treasurer’s office to sell some of the $10 million in bonds approved by California voters in 2008.

With funding in place, the rail authority will lay some 29 miles of track in California’s Central Valley, a region that is best known for its agrarian offerings. Officials estimate the project will likely not be completed until at least August 2019.

Eventually, the rail’s first phase will encompass a segment that connects San Jose to Wasco, population 25,000, and creating a high-speed artery through the middle of the state that will eventually work its way to Los Angeles county.
...
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby Jeff Smith » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:38 pm

Casualty of the oft-delayed and over-budget CAHSR: SF Chronicle

San Francisco’s over-budget and oversize $2.4 billion Transbay Transit Center will open in December — but it’s going to cost an estimated $20 million a year to run the place, and no one knows where all the money will come from.

The three-block-long behemoth was envisioned as the Grand Central Station of the West, a dynamic hub for buses and high-speed rail that would draw more than 100,000 visitors a day.

Come opening day, however, there will be no high-speed rail. Instead, for many years, the five-level showcase just south of Mission Street between Second and Beale streets will be little more than the world’s most expensive bus station — serving mainly the 14,000 transbay bus commuters who roll in and out daily on AC Transit.

That reality is starting to sink in and has city officials scrambling — because without the big crowds that trains were supposed to bring in, there are serious questions about where all the money needed to keep the place secure, clean and well lit will come from.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Wed Mar 08, 2017 8:15 am

While The Journal editorialized, The Times reported:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/06/us/t ... grant.html

Fair Use:

.SAN FRANCISCO — The engineers of Silicon Valley are fine-tuning driverless cars, building robots designed to replicate the human brain and shaving milliseconds off internet response times.

Their trip to work, however, can be a throwback to the predigital age. The region’s commuter rail line is saddled with aging, smoke-spewing, diesel-powered locomotives.

For more than a decade, the managers of the Silicon Valley railway, known as Caltrain, have been planning to upgrade to faster and less polluting electric trains.

But those plans are now imperiled by the Trump administration’s decision in February to withhold a $647 million federal grant.

In this impasse, some transportation experts see a foretaste of the political infighting and financial hurdles that could plague the nationwide infrastructure projects that President Trump is promising. Reviving America’s rusted and sagging infrastructure is one of the few areas where it seemed Democrats and Republicans could agree. But making these projects a reality — the “new roads, bridges, tunnels, airports and railways gleaming across our beautiful land” that Mr. Trump enumerated to Congress last week — will require political cooperation and accommodations that are increasingly rare in ultrapartisan times.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby amtrakhogger » Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:25 am

No one mentions the Highway and Airline lobbies, I am sure they have a keen interest in seeing this project getting scuttled.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby deathtopumpkins » Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:51 am

Actually I think at least some airlines would support CAHSR. I'm sure any that have lucrative SFO-LAX flights would probably lament losing those, but for flights outside of California, I'm sure at least several airlines are looking at consolidating to only one CA hub, and I'm sure they've noted the benefit CAHSR could have as a feeder service, bringing people to the airports easier.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby scratchy » Wed Mar 08, 2017 12:05 pm

Does anyone know why the Lossan Corridor wasn't studied for HSR, instead?
It's the second busiest passenger rail line in the country, and would have made a lot more sense.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby electricron » Wed Mar 08, 2017 1:58 pm

Because the LOSSAN corridor has too much density around it, and trains will never ever go faster than 110 mph on it anyways. Even the HSR line through the Central Valley isn't going to reach 150 -200 mph speeds until it reaches the rural farmlands and desert.That's why the HSR line between LA and SD must be rerouted to the rural desert adjacent and parallel to I-15. I-5 has too much development around it already. What I'm afraid of is that by the time they actually start building HSR to San Diego the I -15 corridor will also have too much development as well.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby Arlington » Thu Mar 09, 2017 2:46 pm

Have you all read Alon Levy's proposal for upgrading LOSSAN?
A High-Speed Train From San Diego to L.A. Is Possible Even Without High-Speed Rail


Based in part on Paul Druce's work on the benefits of electrification:
http://reasonrail.blogspot.fr/2012/05/w ... esels.html
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby electricron » Thu Mar 09, 2017 2:58 pm

$800 Million it electrify the corridor and another $500 million to tunnel under the Miramar Hills isn't cheap. It would also make the $102 Million recently spent on 14 brand new Charger locomotives for the Surfliner service wasteful. And that figure doesn't include the costs of the additonal 6 Charger locomotives ordered a year earlier..

Electrifying the corridor only makes economic sense if all the passenger trains using the LOSSAN corridor switch to electric locomotives. To date, neither Coastal, Metrolink, nor Amtrak have ordered electric locomotives, or made plans to do so.
Last edited by electricron on Thu Mar 09, 2017 3:22 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: CA California CAHSR System

Postby bdawe » Thu Mar 09, 2017 3:08 pm

I'm sure someone else in all of America could use some Chargers.

this would be an improvement for all the passenger services using the corridor, and still way cheaper than another, longer HSR mountain crossing to the east
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