California High Speed Rail is getting scaled back

Discussion in 'High Speed and Other Non-Amtrak Intercity Rail' started by sttom, Feb 12, 2019.

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  1. Feb 16, 2019 #51

    jis

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    It would be interesting to see whether there is a lawsuit over cutting of a single branch of a root of a tree in digging a tunnel. I wouldn't put it past the list of possibilities given some the crap that we saw thrown at Brightline, even when they were already running trains on a right of way.
     
  2. Feb 17, 2019 #52

    jis

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  3. Feb 17, 2019 #53

    Anderson

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    I really wish there were an anti-NIMBY equivalent of the anti-SLAPP rules various jurisdictions have (i.e. a vexatious/frivilous case results in either having to pay opposing counsel's costs and/or sanctions against the plaintiff and their counsel).
     
  4. Feb 18, 2019 #54

    seat38a

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    Why can't this project do what the French did for many of their latest LGV construction such as the LGV SEA. Build it and for 40-50 years they charge a toll to use the rails. In theory if they builder opened up the tracks to multiple train operators and auction off slots. Even the 25N HSR project in Belgium is doing the same thing.
     
  5. Feb 20, 2019 #55

    daybeers

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    So does anyone actually know what's going to happen with this severely mismanaged project?
     
  6. Feb 20, 2019 #56

    Anderson

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    Well, in a sense Caltrain electrification is part of this project in at least some form, so that's there.  On the LA end, there's been some study work on the Burbank-to-Palmdale segment, but that's also cost-heavy and engineering-heavy.  Burbank to Union Station could be done, but I think the work there would have relatively little independent utility until you start ramping up through frequencies.

    As to the current situation with the project...I think it's now going into the hands of the lawyers.
     
  7. Feb 20, 2019 #57

    GBNorman

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    CBS Radio News is reporting as I write that the Trump administration will seek to "claw back" Federal funds that have been appropriated and even spent on CAHSR.

    It is speculated that this action is "retribution" against CA for being one of the States seeking to enjoin the Administration from their "National Emergency" spending.

    Here's more from Bloomberg:

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.bloomberg.com/amp/news/articles/2019-02-19/u-s-cancels-929-million-for-california-high-speed-rail-project
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 20, 2019
  8. Feb 20, 2019 #58

    cpotisch

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    So classy and mature. :angry:
     
  9. Feb 21, 2019 #59

    Bob Dylan

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    I'm gonna take my ball and go home cause yall are treating me so unfair!"

    Wah!!!!
     
  10. Feb 21, 2019 #60

    me_little_me

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    This is nothing new in politics. I remember back hen Kennedy was president. He closed the Brooklyn Navy Yard and expanded the Boston Navy Yard to do Brooklyn's work when he could have closed Boston and used the extra capacity of Brooklyn to do Boston's work without any big expenditures.

    When Nixon took over, he closed the Boston Navy Yard.

    Tit for tat. That's what happens when the money is not yours but you can spend it as you like. You reward your friends (or buy new ones) and punish your enemies.
     
  11. Feb 23, 2019 #61

    neroden

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    California has stated that they're not giving any of the money back, that they're in compliance with the federal rules, and that they're going to sue the FRA for illegally attempting to take the money back.

    I'm pretty sure (a) this drags on until Trump is thrown out of office (probably in 2020), and (b) California keeps all the money.
     
  12. May 17, 2019 #62

    keelhauled

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    The FRA has confirmed that it has terminated $928.6 million in federal funding, which will now be made available to other rail projects. California says it will go to court to attempt to overturn the decision. The agency is also considering ways to retrieve $2.5 billion that it has already provided to CA, and which the state has already spent.
     
  13. May 17, 2019 #63

    Bob Dylan

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    AKA " Indian Giver!":(
     
  14. May 17, 2019 #64

    cirdan

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    It would be interesting to know what other rail projects out there would be eligible for this money. Maybe if this whole affair kick starts a new swathe of rail construction projects, high-speed or otherwise, it wouldn't be all bad.
     
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  15. May 17, 2019 #65

    Ziv

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    How much would it cost to install a catenary system from DC to Richmond? I imagine there would be a need to build an additional track for much of the route, so it is probably a pipe dream.
    What part of Amtrak system would benefit the most/deliver the most improved trip times from $900Mn or less? I haven't a clue, but I wouldn't compete with the existing efforts in CA, TX or FL, so either enhance DC-NY or CHI-CIN or CHI-STL?
     
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  16. May 17, 2019 #66

    Blackwolf

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    Since this is going to court, the withdrawn money isn't going to be awarded anywhere else any time soon. They'll have to sideline it until a long-drawn-out legal challenge is processed. And I'm rather confident that the FRA is going to be compelled to re-award it to CA.
     
  17. May 17, 2019 #67

    Devil's Advocate

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    As already mentioned this money will probably be locked in a protracted court battle while the original value is slowly eroded by inflation. There is no plausible situation in which the FRA didn't already know this when they chose to recall it.
     
  18. May 18, 2019 #68

    Ziv

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    I asked earlier how much it would cost to electrify the DC to Richmond route, and found some older info (from 2006) about how much it would cost to add another track from DC to Richmond, plus how much it would cost to electrify said track. The VA Dept of Rail estimated that building the third track from DC to Richmond would cost approximately $684Mn (plus utility work), and electrifying/building the catenary system would cost an additional $953Mn. These costs were estimates from 2006 and the expected inflation rate of the cost is 3.12% ( which makes the $684Mn a cool $1Bn in todays money) and the cost of the DC Long Bridge is not included. The study suggests that there is sufficient room in the existing right of way for the majority of the route, and that less than 1 acre of land would need to be purchased.
    I apologize for the older doc if there is a newer one in circulation. But if the CA $900Mn doesn't end up in litigation purgatory, it would be almost enough to build the third track to Richmond, if the Feds and Virginia could find funds to cover the catenary system. That is a rather big "if"...
    But it would be cool to have a 125 mph (maybe 160 mph for part of it?) option for most of the route from Richmond to DC. Stretch a few of the soon to be new Acela II routes all the way to Richmond! That's the ticket. A pipe dream?

    http://www.dc2rvarail.com/files/321...to_Richmond_Third_Track_Feasibility_Study.pdf
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2019
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