electricron wrote:All Texas Central would need from Trump is low interest loan guarantees, recognition from the federal government with the least financial commitment, recognition Texas Central could then use in court to establish they are a real railroad so they can start eminent domain proceedings.
rantanamo wrote:electricron wrote:All Texas Central would need from Trump is low interest loan guarantees, recognition from the federal government with the least financial commitment, recognition Texas Central could then use in court to establish they are a real railroad so they can start eminent domain proceedings.
wouldn't those counties be Trump supporters. I would think this would be political suicide.
tamtagon wrote:I'd like to see the DFW-Austin-San Antonio leg get a jump start.
electricron wrote:rantanamo wrote:electricron wrote:All Texas Central would need from Trump is low interest loan guarantees, recognition from the federal government with the least financial commitment, recognition Texas Central could then use in court to establish they are a real railroad so they can start eminent domain proceedings.
wouldn't those counties be Trump supporters. I would think this would be political suicide.
Trump is/was a real estate developer before he was elected President, and no developer that I am aware of like NIMBYs. It would not be political suicide.
electricron wrote:tamtagon wrote:I'd like to see the DFW-Austin-San Antonio leg get a jump start.
Does the existing Texas Eagle daily service count as a jump start?
Once the Dallas to Houston route has started, an extension off it to Austin and San Antonio would be cheaper to implement. There aren't many empty HSR corridors available to travel through Austin or reach far into San Antonio. But I wouldn't expect funding for it to become available until the first route proves it can be profitable.
What California HSR Can Learn from Europe
BY LUCA GIARAMIDARO ON FEB 1, 2017
... Liège Guillemins can often be found filled with travelers and locals alike, enjoying the urban terrace overlooking the large main plaza or casually gathering on the station’s front steps.
Successful stations around Europe are a destination in themselves, and that is one last lesson that California must take to heart. These stations have become an integral part of city centers: places for locals and visitors to gather and enjoy. Leveraging their central role in the mobility system, HSR stations elevate their status to true urban destinations by deploying well programmed cultural and commercial offerings, as in London’s Saint Pancras Station, where the ample open concourse connecting the Eurostar, regional trains and subway lines is full of life, featuring shops, cafés and restaurants accessible throughout the day while music, art and tourist attractions keep visitors entertained.
With HSR, stations in California have the opportunity to not only to better connect the state, but also to bring new life and strengthen local community identity.
High-speed train developer withdraws lawsuits against Texas landowners
BY BRANDON FORMBYFEB. 7, 2017 10:07 AM
The private developer of a planned bullet train between Dallas and Houston has withdrawn more than a dozen lawsuits against Texas landowners that sought court orders allowing the company access to private property to survey land for the 240-mile project.
Texas Central Partners officials said they are instead going to try and have an “open dialogue” with landowners about letting the company onto their land.
Keith said Tuesday that the company was confident it would have secured a ruling in its favor. Texas Central and landowners had already settled 21 other similar legal filings. The company said the decision to withdraw the remaining suits was largely based on the fact that it's already reached access and land-purchase options with more than 3,000 landowners.
A land-purchase option essentially means that the company and a property owner have reached an agreement on how much the firm will pay for any land that may be needed for the route. The company pays an up-front fee that the owner can keep regardless of whether the firm eventually needs their land once the route is finalized.
The private company behind a planned bullet train that would connect Dallas and Houston in 90 minutes is dropping more than a dozen lawsuits against landowners who refused to allow the company onto their property to survey, Texas Central Partners announced Tuesday.
Executives said that the move, which was first reported by the Texas Tribune, will allow Texas Central to negotiate with landowners more amicably.
Texas bullet train could cost taxpayers $21.5 billion, new report concludes
Feb 14, 2017
Bill Hethcock - Staff Writer, Dallas Business Journal
A new report estimates the Texas bullet train could cost taxpayers $21.5 billion and concludes that privately funded high speed rail is not a feasible mode of transit outside of the Northeastern United States.
The report from the Reason Foundation estimates that the proposed Texas Central Partners project between Dallas and Houston will run at a $537 million annual operating deficit over the its first 40 years of operations.
...Texas Central initially projected annual ridership of 4 million passengers by 2035. More recently, Texas Central upped this projection to 5 million annual passengers by 2025. However, the analysis by Reason indicates a more likely 2035 annual ridership number is 1.4 million passengers. “Unless TCR can bolster its ridership claim, private investors will be hard to find,” the report concludes.
About Reason Foundation
Reason Foundation advances a free society by developing, applying, and promoting libertarian principles, including individual liberty, free markets, and the rule of law.
Reason Foundation produces respected public policy research on a variety of issues and publishes the critically-acclaimed Reason magazine. Together, our top-tier think tank and political and cultural magazine reach a diverse, influential audience, advancing the values of choice, individual freedom and limited government.
Reason Foundation's nonpartisan public policy research promotes choice, competition, and a dynamic market economy as the foundation for human dignity and progress. Reason produces rigorous, peer reviewed research and directly engages the policy process, seeking strategies that emphasize cooperation, flexibility, local knowledge, transparency, accountability and results. Through practical and innovative approaches to complex problems, Reason seeks to change the way people think about issues, and promote policies that allow and encourage individuals and voluntary institutions to flourish.
rantanamo wrote:is this a privately run line or not? Why will it cost us $21.5 billion?
tanzoak wrote:rantanamo wrote:is this a privately run line or not? Why will it cost us $21.5 billion?
They think that it will fail and then be bailed out.
But his actual analysis doesn't lead to the conclusion of $21.5 billion cost to taxpayers. The $21.5 billion comes from his estimated differential between total project costs and revenues over 40 years. But unless the premise is that TCR will fail to get funding for construction and then the state will decide to build it on its own (lol not going to happen), construction cost is not particularly important in a hypothetical bailout/takeover.
What is important is the O&M deficit, which this study estimates at $70 million annually. While $70 million isn't nothing.. wait, actually it is nothing in the context of transportation spending. Especially when you consider that your capital costs have been paid for by some apparently really dumb bankers who financed this apparently clearly absurd project.
Reason should stick to supporting private markets and stay out of this unless/until the time comes for the state (or feds?) to take it over, and then yell like hell if it appears the government is paying much more than the value of the metal and trainsets to acquire it.
rantanamo wrote:do you know some things on the inside about why this will fail or speculating?
rantanamo wrote:I guess more of my question is, why do they think the government would bail it out if it failed?
Hannibal Lecter wrote:^ When do they ever NOT bail out huge failures? Especially Super-Duper-PC ones like a high speed rail line....
Texas Rail Advocates Executive Director Chris Lippincott, in response to the filing of bills to kill the high speed train project said “today’s bills opposing the development of bullet trains in Texas are as unsurprising as it is disappointing. Adding more government bureaucracy will damage efforts to build the train infrastructure Texans want. Our Legislature should be in the business of expanding transportation options and embracing innovation. We hope legislators don’t fall victim to a vocal minority who would have our state bury its head in the sand by ignoring our growing population and clogged roads. Texas deserves better.”
Haretip wrote:As for the incompatibility argument, the cars I saw were 4'8-1/2" gage. The only thing I can think that they are referring to is perhaps the power supply or the coupling? I'm not really sure how relevant that is. If there was an American company capable of producing a bullet train, it shouldn't be that big of a deal to produce a train that can run on a 25 kV AC system. What else is so proprietary about the Shinkansen technology? As I recall, Electricron was an electrician, what say you on this issue?
Haretip wrote:Well, that seems to confirm that their proposed legislation on proprietary systems is ridiculous.
I spent way too much time today reading up on the overhead contact system and power systems for the bullet train.
tamtagon wrote:^I think running the line to DTHouston was determined to be way too expensive, lots of stuff is in the way.... I think entities in Houston are trying to raise a ~billion dollars to help buy the land. I think there's an old postal facility (or something like that) next to the UoH identified for a HSR station.
tamtagon wrote:In my understanding of HSR service parameters of distance and potential trips*, SanAustintonio is the only other population center large enough to be considered for service to DFW and/or Houston.
SanAnto-Austin-Killeen - 274 miles check; ~5 million population almost there
Monterrey-Laredo-SA-Austin-Killeen - 570 miles check-ish, ~9 million population good (if train can pass wall...)
Kansas City-Tulsa-OKC 500 miles - check; population ~4.5 million - border line
Saint Louis-Tulsa-OKC 630 miles -- almost check; population ~ 5 million - border line
New Orleans Beaumont <440 miles to Houston check; >2 million population bad
Memphis-Little Rock-Texark-Shrevport-Tyler 450 miles check; ~3 million population
So, as much as I would like HSR heading North and NorthEast from DFW, doesn't appear socio-economically feasible for quite a while. And the only way Houston HSR stops in Fort Worth is if Tarrant County boosters raise the billion dollars it'll cost. However, when the I-35 corridor population centers link to Dallas by HSR, the combined trips SA-Aus-Hou to Fort Worth could make the extension viable.
*The competitive advantage of high-speed rail over other modes of travel is maximized at distances between 100 to
500 miles. Distances below 100 miles are better suited for auto and commuter rail networks whereas distances greater than 500 miles are more efficiently travelled by air.
WASHINGTON -- Texas is closer than ever to building the first high-speed train in the United States, thanks to President Donald Trump's fascination with these transportation projects and a well-timed pitch to his administration.
Now developers nationwide are looking to the privately owned Texas Central Railway as a test case of what can get done with Trump in the White House.
Former Houston Astros owner Drayton McLane Jr., a member of the company's board of directors, met recently with Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao in Washington. He wasn't seeking any of the taxpayer-funded grants sought by high-speed rail projects in California and the Northeast.
What the $10 billion Texas Central Railway really needs is a green light from the agency Chao oversees.
"It was an opportunity to make a first impression," said Tim Keith, president of Texas Central Railway.
Tnexster wrote:^Me too, I wonder how long it will be until that happens. I guess they would need to be up and running, prove it makes money and then start? Or are they so confident in their model that they could at least start planning. That I-35 corridor needs help.
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