Future Mexican passenger rail

General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

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D.S. Lewith
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Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by D.S. Lewith » Sat May 25, 2019 3:00 am

Mexico used to have regular intercity passenger rail until the late 1990s, when NdeM was privatized and its tracks were sold to other railways (mostly to Ferromex and Kansas City Southern de México)

Barring the tourist trains, as of current, the only existing passenger rail service is the Tren Suburbano (which is being expanded with two new lines), which is reusing a one-electrified railroad that ran between Mexico City and Querétaro. There is only one other passenger railway being constructed: the Mexico City-Toluca train, which is using a completely new ROW, though it is not connected to Buenavista station (instead terminating at Metro Observatario). There is also the proposed Mayan Train, though that has not gone without controversy (most notably from the EZLN).

Should (at the very least) the Mexico City-Toluca train prove to be successful, then there could be a push to restore intercity passenger rail. I do expect that these passenger trains would be operated by an equivalent to USA's Amtrak and Canada's VIA Rail. As for the rail itself, virtually all of the rail is owned by three private rail companies (Kansas City Southern de Mexico, Ferromex, Ferrosur). It's unknown what the asking price would be from these three railroads but they probably may not be so willing to invite passenger rail on their tracks compared to their American and Canadian counterparts. Furthermore, much of the tracks are winding legacy tracks that may not support even 90 miles per hour, thus requiring a new set of tracks to be built.

Very likely the first segment would be Mexico City-Santiago de Querétaro (this was the line that was electrified before it was de-energized following privatization) and building a rail line to link Metro Observatorio (the Mexico City-Toluca train's eastern terminus) with the Buenavista station (thus unifying it with the Tren Suburbano) before extending the Mexico City-Santiago de Querétaro line to San Luis Potosí (as well as building a new Guadalajara-San Luis Potosí line and a new Guadalajara-Mexico City line).

David Benton
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by David Benton » Tue May 28, 2019 4:38 am

When I rode the Mexican passenger trains , back in the late 80's , early 90's , they were full. It certainly wasn't low ridership that led to their demise. The new line was been built then , we saw the new concrete bridges from the existing Guadalajara line. It looked like a bit of a boondoggle, curved bridges where they could have been straight , or the terrain didn't seem to warrant a bridge at all.
I suspect this line would be rebuilt or even bypassed if real HSR was built.
I don't know what Mexican - Chinese relations are like , but I would think the best chance of having new lines would be to have the Chinese fund and build them. The freight railroads apparently demanded the passenger trains were stopped as a condition of buying the franchises.
I doubt using the freight lines is a viable option.
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Gilbert B Norman
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by Gilbert B Norman » Tue May 28, 2019 10:35 am

Condition precedent from both KCS and UP (Ferromex) before "laying money down". No passenger trains AND don't even THINK about a MEXTRAK.

With that said, let the discussion continue.

D.S. Lewith
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by D.S. Lewith » Tue May 28, 2019 7:43 pm

David Benton wrote:When I rode the Mexican passenger trains , back in the late 80's , early 90's , they were full. It certainly wasn't low ridership that led to their demise. The new line was been built then , we saw the new concrete bridges from the existing Guadalajara line. It looked like a bit of a boondoggle, curved bridges where they could have been straight , or the terrain didn't seem to warrant a bridge at all.
I suspect this line would be rebuilt or even bypassed if real HSR was built.
David Benton wrote:The freight railroads apparently demanded the passenger trains were stopped as a condition of buying the franchises.
I doubt using the freight lines is a viable option.
Pretty much they would have to build completely new lines from the get-go, which would pretty likely be necessary due to all the winding legacy tracks.
David Benton wrote:I don't know what Mexican - Chinese relations are like , but I would think the best chance of having new lines would be to have the Chinese fund and build them.
Certainly better than US-China ATM that's for sure. Anyways, the CRRC was selected to build a Mexico City-Queretaro HSR line in 2014 but doubts over the bidding process led to it being mothballed. Then they opened a tender again in 2015, only for that to be mothballed as well, though CRRC could be compensated $1.13 million from Mexico. Wonder who was selected to build the Mexico City-Toluca train (I do know CAF is building the rolling stock straight out of Spain to be used).
David Benton wrote:The freight railroads apparently demanded the passenger trains were stopped as a condition of buying the franchises.
I doubt using the freight lines is a viable option.
Seems they played hardball.
Gilbert B Norman wrote:Condition precedent from both KCS and UP (Ferromex) before "laying money down". No passenger trains AND don't even THINK about a MEXTRAK.
Who will operate the new passenger trains then?

David Benton
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by David Benton » Tue May 28, 2019 11:21 pm

Some Mexican population figures , to plan our new passenger system with !
https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the ... exico.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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D.S. Lewith
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by D.S. Lewith » Wed May 29, 2019 1:09 am

David Benton wrote:Some Mexican population figures , to plan our new passenger system with !
https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the ... exico.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
The new lines radiating from Mexico City are going to be low-hanging fruit, so much of the focus will be on the lines closest to Mexico City.

mtuandrew
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by mtuandrew » Wed May 29, 2019 11:42 am

I’d be happy to see Distrito Federál - Ciudad Juarez eventually, but I don’t expect it. More likely Mexico renationalizes and hires Bombardier or a Chinese operating company to build higher-speed rail, I think.

Gilbert B Norman
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by Gilbert B Norman » Wed May 29, 2019 12:58 pm

Just as glad I got my Mexican riding in during '70, '73, and '75, for even if there were passenger trains through the Interior, other than the existing Los Mochis-Chihuaha excursion train, I wouldn't be on one until there was greater political stability down there. I understand there is a strong military presence aboard the excursion train.

As I've noted at another topic, I'm certain that potential growth at the Port of Lazaro Cardenas (Mich) is held down owing to the instability.

D.S. Lewith
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by D.S. Lewith » Thu May 30, 2019 10:37 pm

mtuandrew wrote:I’d be happy to see Distrito Federál - Ciudad Juarez eventually, but I don’t expect it. More likely Mexico renationalizes and hires Bombardier or a Chinese operating company to build higher-speed rail, I think.
Considering that Ferromex+Ferrosur and Kansas City Southern de Mexico are interconnected with the US freight companies (i.e. BNSF, UPRR and of course KCS), that's not gonna happen. They're gonna have to build a new set of tracks and then call it their own.
Gilbert B Norman wrote:Just as glad I got my Mexican riding in during '70, '73, and '75, for even if there were passenger trains through the Interior, other than the existing Los Mochis-Chihuaha excursion train, I wouldn't be on one until there was greater political stability down there. I understand there is a strong military presence aboard the excursion train.

As I've noted at another topic, I'm certain that potential growth at the Port of Lazaro Cardenas (Mich) is held down owing to the instability.
Perhaps a step would be to end the Drug War (at the very least the Cartel violence has started to die down, though there's still the issue with corrupt officials). Never heard that there was a military presence surrounding the Copper Canyon train.

Gilbert B Norman
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by Gilbert B Norman » Fri May 31, 2019 8:04 am

D.S. Lewith wrote:
Gilbert B Norman wrote: I understand there is a strong military presence aboard the excursion train.
Never heard that there was a military presence surrounding the Copper Canyon train.
Mr. Lewith, I'll defer to you on that point, for I'm not about to go chasing around on land down there for any reason. I'm too old to get into the beach scene at the Yucatan resorts, which I assume are deemed "safe".

Even if I no longer hold a Long position in KSU, I still follow affairs regarding Lazaro Cardenas. It would seem that could become the next Port of LA/LB, what with drayage costs likely half of those to the North, and no Canal tolls to pay.

And it all belongs to the KCSM.

But so long as the shippers must confront "banditos" who have been "tipped off" by corrupt officials where on a train the high value cargo is located, they will be reluctant to use that port and the KCS.

David Benton
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by David Benton » Sat Jun 01, 2019 5:03 am

I found Mexico to be safe, certainly parts of the USA that felt a lot More dangerous. Perhaps i was just unaware , but neither were anything like the constant danger of South America.
I am not sure security is much of a problem with freight either . the double stack containers are hard to open , the bottom ones impossible.
I found this advice page on the copper canyon train / area.
https://www.visitcoppercanyon.com/coppe ... co-safety/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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David Benton
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by David Benton » Sat Jun 01, 2019 5:23 am

It appears the HSR is back on the planning board.
https://mexiconewsdaily.com/news/mexico ... ing-board/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Not sure if much has happened in the 11 months since this article was written.
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CarterB
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by CarterB » Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:25 am

mtuandrew wrote:I’d be happy to see Distrito Federál - Ciudad Juarez eventually, but I don’t expect it. More likely Mexico renationalizes and hires Bombardier or a Chinese operating company to build higher-speed rail, I think.
That would help get trainloads of illegal immigrants thru Mexico much quicker to the US border. That way they wouldn't have to feed them or house them on the way thru.
Bring back the Slumbercoaches!!

David Benton
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by David Benton » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:54 am

These guys might know of some suitable abandoned lines in Mexico , for HSR.
viewtopic.php?f=149&t=169718" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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mtuandrew
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Re: Future Mexican passenger rail

Post by mtuandrew » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:58 am

CarterB wrote:
mtuandrew wrote:I’d be happy to see Distrito Federál - Ciudad Juarez eventually, but I don’t expect it. More likely Mexico renationalizes and hires Bombardier or a Chinese operating company to build higher-speed rail, I think.
That would help get trainloads of illegal immigrants thru Mexico much quicker to the US border. That way they wouldn't have to feed them or house them on the way thru.
Moderator Note: enough on this branch of the topic.

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