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Amtrak Booming In The NE US  
User currently offlineMasseyBrown From United States of America, joined Dec 2002, 5376 posts, RR: 7
Posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 12190 times:

Nice article in today's WSJ saying that Amtrak's Boston-Washington corridor train business is up 20% and operating 90% on time in June. Amtrak's market share on the 10,000 pax/day Washington-New York route has grown to 54% of the market. Delays at LGA and fares cheaper than airlines are cited as reasons, but they also note that Chicago-St Louis is up 53%. Gordon Bethune and Robert Crandall are quoted supporting an expansion of high-speed rail for short hauls.

The article didn't mention the fact that the airlines no longer guarantee seats to walk-up pax on their shuttles - one of the prime advantages the shuttles used to offer

[Edited 2007-08-23 17:01:53]


I love long German words like 'Freundschaftsbezeigungen'.
173 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePanAm747 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4242 posts, RR: 8
Reply 1, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 12092 times:

I have always wondered how airports and traffic in the northeast would improve if the "shuttle" went the way of the dinosaur (exceptions being made for flights connecting to or from hub airports like EWR, JFK or IAD).

What percent of traffic in the northeast corridor area is shuttle traffic?

In a perfect world, Amtrak would handle the point-to-point traffic between the major metropolitan areas. Washington DC to New York City is SO easy by train - downtown to downtown without the drives to the airport (although DCA is as easy as it gets) or TSA security lines. Airports should be for longer flights.



Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
User currently offlineMax999 From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 1031 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 12042 times:

Here's a link to the free article on their website...

http://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB118781538275205642.html



All the things I really like to do are either immoral, illegal, or fattening.
User currently offlineMasseyBrown From United States of America, joined Dec 2002, 5376 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 11914 times:

Quoting PanAm747 (Reply 1):
I have always wondered how airports and traffic in the northeast would improve if the "shuttle" went the way of the dinosaur

I really think the loss of high fare walk-up business took a lot of profit out of the shuttles, but I've never seen any authoritative statement that this was true, although DL and US have both complained in print about generally poor profitability of the shuttles.

A couple weeks ago my son and his gf took a bus from a street corner in a DC suburb (Bethesda) to a street corner near the Port Authority in NY for $25 each. I think there are two companies that offer bargain bus rates on perhaps 400 seats a day each way. At that price, I'm surprised their business isn't bigger. $324 OW on the 3 hour (intown-to-intown) shuttle vs $25 on the 4-hour bus is quite a spread.



I love long German words like 'Freundschaftsbezeigungen'.
User currently offlineTimz From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 6800 posts, RR: 7
Reply 4, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 11912 times:

The article says Acela ridership is up 20% -- not the whole Boston-Washington service.

User currently offlinePlaneguy727 From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1240 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 11847 times:

I use the US Airways Shuttle quite a bit - I can say that I still do it because to make a day trip from NYC (where I live) to DC and back requires a 4:40am train (YUCK) and not getting home until 9pm or so. I can do the 6am or 7am shuttle and the 5 or 6pm shuttle back and with a little planning the cost is not that much different.

A little trick (don't tell US Airways) - but you can often book the shuttle flights on the United website for less - I did this the other day $485 on US site, $289 on UA site (for a day trip in September).

I also use the Shuttle for connecting flights at DCA or BOS - I have noticed and increased amount of leisure travelers over previous experiences, the majority of them seem to be connecting (from observation - no hard data). I know on the US website you can sometimes get cheaper fares by using a routing like LGA-DCA-MCO with the first segment a shuttle flight than doing LGA-CLT-MCO, etc.

All that being said, I still enjoy the Amtrak service, but if its a day trip, give me the shuttle (and I'm a morning person).

PG727



I want to live in an old and converted 727...
User currently offlineLat41 From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 469 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 11678 times:

With it's monoply on the PVD/LGA route and accompanying high fares, US fairly sends Southern New England business and leisure traffic to AMTRAK. And now that the Acela isn't busted every other day.....

User currently offlineSTLGph From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 9304 posts, RR: 25
Reply 7, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 11607 times:

St. Louis - Chicago ridership is also up ... 40% since the addition of trains last October.

http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/new...147EC86257340000D17F2?OpenDocument



Eternal darkness we all should dread. It's hard to party when you're dead.
User currently offlineNoBoeingNoGoin From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 108 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 11573 times:

Quoting Planeguy727 (Reply 5):
I also use the Shuttle for connecting flights at DCA or BOS - I have noticed and increased amount of leisure travelers over previous experiences, the majority of them seem to be connecting (from observation - no hard data). I know on the US website you can sometimes get cheaper fares by using a routing like LGA-DCA-MCO with the first segment a shuttle flight than doing LGA-CLT-MCO, etc.

I feel like the only reason that you are finding a cheaper fare is because the shuttles almost always show full availability across all of the fare classes. Since airlines post fares from city to city having lots of cheaper seats available would give a better chance of finding cheaper fares.

In my time at US, I never really looked into discount fare pricing because at TYS, there was no cheap flight anywhere.


User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 26864 posts, RR: 58
Reply 9, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 11551 times:

Last year I did Boston to Providence on Amtrak. Great fares and ontime service. It really was a nice experience. The staff were really friendly also.

User currently offlineSkyyMaster From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 11507 times:

It was either earlier this week or late last week, Amtrak announced some daily Acela services will no longer be stopping in Baltimore. I wonder if this have any affect on the airline shuttles between DCA and LGA? I've never ridden Acela, and I cannot imagine the stops in Baltimore are very long, but they might play that up in a campaign versus flying.

User currently offlineAAJFKSJUBKLYN From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 901 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 11457 times:

Quoting MasseyBrown (Reply 3):
A couple weeks ago my son and his gf took a bus from a street corner in a DC suburb (Bethesda) to a street corner near the Port Authority in NY for $25 each. I think there are two companies that offer bargain bus rates on perhaps 400 seats a day each way. At that price, I'm surprised their business isn't bigger. $324 OW on the 3 hour (intown-to-intown) shuttle vs $25 on the 4-hour bus is quite a spread.

I would never take these buses. They are run like trash. Sounds cheap, is cheap and I wonder what insurance they have. I have personally seen the buses to DCA and BOS. I wouldn't get on them.


User currently offlineSpacecadet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3614 posts, RR: 12
Reply 12, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 11436 times:

While this is nice for Amtrak, it really isn't anything new. Amtrak has been setting ridership records basically every year for the last decade. The only real difference here seems to be that the WSJ finally noticed. But every year, Amtrak puts out press release after press release trying to get the media interested in their ridership story.

Here's a graph that shows Amtrak's ridership gains over the last 10 years: http://tinyurl.com/2gaqvy

It's about 2 years out of date, but with this new report I think it's safe to say that the trend is continuing.



I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
User currently offlineMainland From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 309 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 11346 times:

Quoting SkyyMaster (Reply 10):
I've never ridden Acela, and I cannot imagine the stops in Baltimore are very long

One train a day (NYC-DC) each way is also bypassing stops in Delaware, making its only stop in Philadelphia. It will shave a total of 10 min. off the trip time -- not enough to really make a stronger argument in the flying vs. train war.



You don't need a passport to know what state you're in...
User currently offlineBobnwa From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 6449 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 11295 times:

Rail travel still has to be subsidized in this country to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollar, including the Boston-Washington corrider. Is it worth it?

[Edited 2007-08-23 22:20:21]

User currently offline57AZ From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2550 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 11260 times:

Quoting Bobnwa (Reply 14):
Is it worth it?

Does the sun rise every day? Yes. Rail transportation is pound for pound and dollar per mile much more efficient than road or air transportation and it can be profitable. For a major railroad, freight subsidizes passenger service to be certain unless the passenger trains can cover their own operating costs. If that happens, every additional penny the trains make is pure profit. Passenger trains cannot survive totally on their own-the railroads knew that a century ago.



"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
User currently offlineMasseyBrown From United States of America, joined Dec 2002, 5376 posts, RR: 7
Reply 16, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 11250 times:

Quoting Timz (Reply 4):
The article says Acela ridership is up 20% -- not the whole Boston-Washington service.

Thanks for the correction.



I love long German words like 'Freundschaftsbezeigungen'.
User currently offlineRJpieces From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 11222 times:

Quoting 57AZ (Reply 15):
Rail transportation is pound for pound and dollar per mile much more efficient than road or air transportation and it can be profitable.

Oh? Then why is it losing billions of dollars?


User currently offlineAirportPlan From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 469 posts, RR: 3
Reply 18, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 11158 times:

Quoting Bobnwa (Reply 14):
Rail travel still has to be subsidized in this country to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollar, including the Boston-Washington corrider. Is it worth it?

And how many billions of dollar per year do we pay to subsidized the FAA?


User currently offlineEXAAUADL From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 11112 times:

Quoting 57AZ (Reply 15):
Is it worth it?

Does the sun rise every day? Yes. Rail transportation is pound for pound and dollar per mile much more efficient than road or air transportation and it can be profitable.

Short haul yes, long haul no.....try booking a NYC to LA tickent on Amtrack, youll have a nice long layover in Chicago...like 8+ hours.

Quoting AirportPlan (Reply 18):
And how many billions of dollar per year do we pay to subsidized the FAA?

ATC in the US, like Canada, should be private.


User currently offlineIAHFLYER From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 319 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 11010 times:

Quoting EXAAUADL (Reply 19):
Short haul yes, long haul no.....try booking a NYC to LA tickent on Amtrack, youll have a nice long layover in Chicago...like 8+ hours.

That is the basis of what many have said in this forum. Use trains in the DC to Boston market is better, which will help reduce airport delays via less traffic.

I don't know if you have been to Chicago or not but a great place for a day trip ( I don't know the time of the layover).

Also, taking the train is for those who enjoy the ride, not just the destination.



Little airports with the big jets are the best!! Floyd
User currently offlineCaspritz78 From Germany, joined Aug 2007, 518 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 10949 times:

Hi everyone,

since I live in a country where trains are the best way to travel domestically I was always surprised that Amtrak is not doing more to install a highspeed train network on the East Coast.

As wonderfull flying is as inconvenient it also got. Flying Boston New York, Boston Washington, Boston Philadelphia is no fun anymore. You spend more time to get to the airport and through check-in and security then you are actually on the plane. Had this experience with an BOS-LGA fligth. The trip from LGA to downtown Manhattan was the worst I ever experienced.

I think Amtrak should try to do what Deutsche Bahn (German Railroad) did in Germany. They started to do Code Sharing with Lufthansa for domestic connections. Deutsche Bahn invested heavily to connect FRA to the highspeed railway network and now you reach Cologne downtown within one hour. I think that this could be the future for Amtrak and several airports on the East Coast. You would reduce short domestic air traffic and could free assets for more valuable destinations.

Greetings

[Edited 2007-08-24 01:12:43]

[Edited 2007-08-24 01:13:14]

User currently offlineFlyPNS1 From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 6588 posts, RR: 24
Reply 22, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 10871 times:

Quoting Bobnwa (Reply 14):
Rail travel still has to be subsidized in this country to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollar, including the Boston-Washington corrider.

Actually, if operated as its own entity, the BOS-WAS corridor of Amtrak could be self-sustaining. Unfortunately, the heavy losses endured on the long-haul sectors destroys any profits produced by the short-haul segments. And lets face it, all forms of transportation are subsidized to some degree...air, road, rail, mass transit.

I'm all for investing in rail for short haul travel on high density corridors. Having a well established short-haul rail system could be complementary to our air system.


User currently offlineScottB From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 6713 posts, RR: 32
Reply 23, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 10849 times:

Quoting AirportPlan (Reply 18):
And how many billions of dollar per year do we pay to subsidized the FAA?

And how many billions of dollars per year are paid by air passengers in direct taxes on tickets to support the FAA? How much of the cost of an Amtrak ticket is tax?

Quoting 57AZ (Reply 15):
Rail transportation is pound for pound and dollar per mile much more efficient than road or air transportation and it can be profitable.

You left out one part: "...as long as you are not especially time-sensitive." Yes, it's far more efficient for sending bulk cargo like lumber, coal, automobiles, etc. For human cargoes traveling more than 300-400 miles, rail transportation isn't terribly effective when the cost of the passenger's time is factored into the equation.

Quoting 57AZ (Reply 15):
For a major railroad, freight subsidizes passenger service to be certain

Which essentially reinforces the idea that rail transportation isn't a terribly cost-effective mode for passenger transportation.

Amtrak lost just under a billion dollars in 2006 (from their 2006 Annual report, here: http://www.amtrak.com/pdf/AmtrakAnnualReport_2006.pdf ) while serving just under 25 million passengers -- or basically, they lost $40 on average for each passenger. Part of the problem is the grossly unprofitable long-distance routes they serve. Part of the problem is that their operation is extremely labor-intensive -- they carried about 1300 passengers per employee in 2006, while Delta carried about 2100 passengers per employee and Southwest carried over 2500 passengers per employee.

Quoting PanAm747 (Reply 1):
I have always wondered how airports and traffic in the northeast would improve if the "shuttle" went the way of the dinosaur

Well, it might be more important to question all the smaller regional aircraft using these airports. Is it entirely necessary to have 10 daily US Airways Express RJ's between BUF and LGA? Should there be 9 daily PHL-LGA round-trips? The Shuttles themselves are near the average aircraft size using those highly-congested airports. Sure, I'd agree that the American Eagle "Shuttle" flights are offenders here.

And yes, I think rail can be successful in certain niche markets like the Northeast Corridor. But in markets without congested airspace, I don't think that rail is a cost-effective competitor.


User currently offlineHPAEAA From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1024 posts, RR: 1
Reply 24, posted (6 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 10841 times:

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 22):
Unfortunately, the heavy losses endured on the long-haul sectors destroys any profits produced by the short-haul segments. And lets face it, all forms of transportation are subsidized to some degree...air, road, rail, mass transit.

I'm all for investing in rail for short haul travel on high density corridors. Having a well established short-haul rail system could be complementary to our air system.

Just look at Europe, the rail companies are setting up alliances, and giving the airlines a good run for their money when it comes to business travelers on 2 hour flights or less... the speed is greater (than US Acela), and terminals are easier /quicker (than european airports) to navigate. I'd like to see further investment in the high speed product, and expansion to the short haul/high density markets.... CHI-MKE, CHI-DTW, CHI-CLE, and cities in between come to mind.. added NE service, Texas service, California.. could be interesting, and help ease the air congestion in areas...



Why do I fly???
25 Post contains images ElmoTheHobo : The Northeastern Corridor is profitable. That and Autotrain are the only profitable Amtrak operations IIRC. Actually yes, I think it's pennance. The
26 Cloudboy : Let me ask you this, then. How efficient would air travel be if there was only one government owned airline, and all the air traffic control and airpo
27 ScottB : How much would the capital cost for that be? How much per daily passenger? Yes, airports have huge capital costs as well, but those costs are spread
28 Post contains links and images Steeler83 : Ever hear of something called the Ohio Hub project? It's a new high-speed regional rail project to be based out of Cleveland, with a secondary base a
29 Post contains images AustinAirport : Did anybody hear about the company that wants to put a high speed bi-directional rail system in to connect Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio. Sounds pr
30 Vincewy : In Taiwan, UNI Air recently ended TSA-RMQ and TSA-CYI (ended Aug 16th) because of not just high speed rail, but also much higher prices of gas, load f
31 Steeler83 : Is it a MAGLEV project? And will it link major airports like IAH and DFW? You know what I think would be a good improvement for the Pittsburgh Maglev
32 Gigneil : It is cheap. And dirty. Usually smells funny. But you get there, they have insurance to get passenger transport registrations, and its cheap as hell.
33 Gigneil : It is cheap. And dirty. Usually smells funny. But you get there, they have insurance to get passenger transport registrations, and its cheap as hell.
34 57AZ : Actually, most of US domestic travel is not time sensitive in the terms of life or death matters-it's only time sensitive because we think it is. Wit
35 AustinAirport : Well i dont know but i imagine so.
36 Post contains links Texan : I don't believe so, but there is not a final decision on the matter. Texas High Speed Rail Commission Also, no. Not directly. In the DFW area it woul
37 57AZ : It's hard to believe that TRE has taken off like it did. Good planning and effective service make all the difference.
38 Steeler83 : If you see post 28, I stated something about Bush wanting to cut service. Come to think of it, didn't he have some proposal of pretty much doing some
39 Articulatexpat : It's interesting how we view different modes of transportation in terms of whether they ought to be profitable or self-sustaining: No one expects road
40 Post contains images AustinAirport : [quote=Texan,reply=36]Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 31): Is it a MAGLEV project? I don't believe so, but there is not a final decision on the matter. Texas
41 57AZ : Yes he did. Multi-modal is the way of transportation's future. The fact is that rail lines do generate growth along their routes (unlike air routes).
42 MasseyBrown : I believe that the connection times have improved since the Lake Shore Limited has been rescheduled. Looking at the current schedule there is a 5.5 h
43 D328 : Less delay's....Only answer.. Sorry I didn't read anything, but hey, that has to be it!
44 3201 : I would have thought this, especially for freight trains, but I've definitely seen calculations that Acela is a lot less efficient than Greyhound bet
45 Post contains links ThreeIfByAir : An interesting GAO report on Amtrak market share versus air in the NEC (and other locations) came out in January 2007. I seem to remember a more detai
46 57AZ : Many carriers are now operating nicer Prevost, Van Hool, Setra or Dina coaches. Any one of these will set you back well over $150k for a late model c
47 Post contains images PWM2TXLHopper : Not only is Amtrak booming along the Northeast Corridor, but further north as well. About five years ago Amtrak started service between Portland, Main
48 CitrusCritter : I can't for the life of me figure out why anyone would want to take Amtrak. Admittedly, I've never done WAS-NYC on Acela, but I've done WAS-Baltimore
49 TCFC424 : As far as Texas is concerned, there are several rail projects worthy of mention. First is the Governor's Trans Texas Corridor. This is basically a hug
50 UA772IAD : One more area. Amtrak is contracted by many commuter railroads to run the day to day operations: training, staffing and maintenence. They enjoy a nic
51 Jcavinato : Bobnwa, Your comment about rail travel being subsidized: it is true. But, the amount of Federal and state funding into supporting the airline infrastr
52 BlueFlyer : I think it would be a mistake not to take advantage of the geographical locations of DFW and IAH relative to the cities they serve. A rail link witho
53 57AZ : Folks that go Washington-Baltimore-Philadephia-Newark-New York City-Boston without having to worry about their schedules being screwed up when the Ti
54 MAC26000 : I travel alot back and forth from DC to NYC. I have started to use AMTRAK because there really is no big time difference and AMTRAK has a much better
55 Airbazar : And airline travel is not subsidized? Is the FAA a self sufficient private entity? What about those guys in shiny new white uniforms that screen your
56 Starlionblue : The terrain is not the issue really, if you don't count man made terrain: - Politics. - Other traffic. On the NYC-New Haven stretch, Metro North (com
57 Corsair1107 : It's really too bad that rail service in the US isn't up to par with most of the world. In the NE Corridor alone, the infrastructure (especially aroun
58 Boeing77W : I really am not surprised by this news! I took the train earlier this year and it was my first time on Amtrak I have only used the Acela service and s
59 GoMEA : Well look at the example of Europe, in France, the TGV (high-speed train) has pushed away the plane on < 3h by train rides... EZY dropped Paris-Marsei
60 CitrusCritter : That may be true, but in my experience with Amtrak, they have a bad habit of ending up on the side rail while CSX or someone passes. Further, while A
61 Bond007 : Yes ... all these airlines that think we need 1/2 hourly shuttle flights, forget that most pax end up spending 2hrs or more at the airport waiting fo
62 Post contains links MasseyBrown : I've taken a fair number of European trains and, while Amtrak can't match the very best European express trains, the Washinton-Boston lines (Acela or
63 CitrusCritter : Whenever I would go to Baltimore to visit friends (or to BWI for a flight), I always found MARC to be much roomier than the Amtrak regional service.
64 R2rho : Nice thread! We had a very long an interesting thread on this subject some time ago. I must say that the people writing in this one are much more reas
65 Texan : That and driving I-30 is a nightmare. Anything to avoid I-30!!! This is one of the problems I have with the proposed line, actually. Not that it stop
66 R2rho : Ahhhh...if only someone would listen to this! So many useless flights could be eliminated, freeing up valuable slots for mid-to-long range flights! I
67 MasseyBrown : CO codeshares with both Amtrak at EWR and SNCF at CDG; but I've never heard how valuable these connections are for CO.
68 Bond007 : Yeah, possibly up to 4hrs IMO. It's tough to fly anywhere in 3 hrs, and factor in other hassles associated with air travel, I'd rather be driving 4hr
69 Starlionblue : That's because the commuter authorities own the tracks. And said commuter authorities never run exactly on time (at least Metro North never does). It
70 57AZ : Due mostly to grade crossings and track profile and maintenance issues. The existing infrastructure could be upgraded for high speed service at a fra
71 FlyPNS1 : Exactly. One of rails chief competitors on short-haul routes is the car, not the plane. Historically, the cost of operating a car has been so cheap,
72 MSYtristar : Amtrak, whether people want to believe it or not, is popular all over the country. Yes, even the much maligned long distance trains. At one point or a
73 Caspritz78 : And don't forget the new TGV Est Europeen to Germany. Frankfurt downtown to Paris downtown in 3hours and 50 minutes. That comes very close to fliying
74 PHLwok : FWIW, there aren't grade crossings on the NY-DC line south of NYC; there are some between NY-BOS. As well as the Pennsylvania Railroad and the other
75 ElmoTheHobo : I only considered their own trains and routes, but I guess that would be right as well. Thanks for the heads up. I was under the impression that this
76 MSYtristar : What happend to UP's proposal to double track the Sunset route from LAX to ELP? I know some sections of it are getting new sidings and some double tr
77 ScottB : Actually, airlines in the U.S. do pay fuel taxes at a rate of 4.4 cents/gallon -- producing revenue of $452 million in 2006. Passengers also paid Fed
78 MSYtristar : Well, it's true that getting there is half the fun...for me anyway. And even though many people actually consider the LD's to be viable travel option
79 Boeing7E7 : Must be why it's so profitable. You pay the user fee in the form of a ticket tax to use the system. Not sure what your point is.
80 Gigneil : The various services differ, but the Chinatown bus in particular is very reliable. There is some old adage about the prosperous being prosperous beca
81 57AZ : Actually, for the night trains productivity does not matter. You board the train in the evening, sleep and get off in the morning. Back in the day, l
82 Airbazar : AFAIK, EWR is one of the very few airports, if not the only airport in the nation that actually has rail "on site", but only by luck and coincidence.
83 ElmoTheHobo : My mistake, the Sunset is the East West route, I'm referring to the coast hugging former Southern Pacific route. The former Southern Pacific route wo
84 PHLwok : In reply 74 I listed some of the problem areas, but the longest of them is that New Rochelle NY - New Haven CT section, where track layout (lots of c
85 Vega : PHL has a direct rail line to City Centre and to the main AMTRAK station at 30th Street. The train stops at all terminals, except "F". EWR benefits b
86 Post contains images AustinAirport : That thing is FUCKED UP. They're are going to put that 1/2 mile wide piece of shit through some of the most precious farmland in Texas. It's gonna ru
87 HPAEAA : Hadn't heard of it, interesting, I thought the concept was killed in favor of expanding 71 from Cleveland to Cinci... good to know it's still around.
88 57AZ : Another one of the great transportation myths. Any government maintained road that you use is a toll road. The only difference is that the toll is ta
89 Post contains images AustinAirport : Look pal that mutha fucka is gonna run over my house.I dont care about the details. So if we go outside all we gonna see is a big damn road. And to t
90 Analog : Oh please. Precious farmland. What percentage of the US crop output comes from the land that would be under eminent domain? Basically zero (given mar
91 57AZ : And if you want beautiful lands to stay that way, you'll build a rail line rather than highways. Some of the most beautiful parts of Colorado and New
92 Aa757first : Just out of curiosity, I compared the taxes on the two. Amtrak between Philadelphia and Boston has, from what I can tell, a tax rate of 0%. The Amtra
93 Airbazar : The problem is that here in the US, we have no choice. Or rather, our choices are drive or drive. In order to give people the choice of what they wan
94 Bond007 : This is somewhat of a myth, and often used as a reason why most of the rest of the world has a great public transportation system. Most European cars
95 Flighty : Nobody knows better than the airline executives. To have 25 737 flights a day going WAS-NYC or the equivalent is just silly. A 250mph railroad need to
96 ModernArt : As others have already mentioned, this is a tired argument. Besides, most farmers have never met a subsidy - or outright buyout - that they didn't co
97 Threepoint : I believe you have exposed your bias: if you didn't live near the proposed rail lines, my guess is that your opinion would be far different. And perh
98 LTBEWR : It is no wonder Amtrak business is booming in the NE corrordor. If one is traveling from core city to core city, it means a lot less traffic hassle to
99 Texan : Well, in his defense, the Trans Texas Corridor is a piece of junk that costs too much and offers too few benefits. Perry screwed up by awarding a no
100 Post contains images Steeler83 : I thought it was very interesting myself, too! I think it would be neat if there was direct Amtrak service at PHL, but I guess with the SEPTA line, i
101 Post contains images TravelGuy : As your screen name implies, very articulate indeed
102 Starlionblue : Yes but psychology is important. No customer would buy our product if we didn't have at least 2-3 face to face meetings plus an in-person pilot proje
103 Post contains images ScottB : But again, this is why new high-speed inter-city rail is unlikely to ever be built in the United States -- there are far too many people living too c
104 Post contains images Cloudboy : Yes, because we know no one has been able to build a new highway for decades. I don't know the details, but I bet it might be close to the economics
105 FlyPNS1 : Using this logic, we shouldn't build any new roads (or widen existing ones) and we shouldn't build new runways either. Building high-speed rail will
106 Scutfarcus : Amtrak only "loses" money because of the un-profitable long distance routes (coast to coast). Personally this doesn't really bother me, but from a pur
107 LTBEWR : As to the rail access at EWR, it doesn't provide access at the EWR station for the Acela service. You also have to use an extension of the people move
108 Post contains images Steeler83 : Which reminds me, is the Sunset LTD still around? I know that it runs from LAX to Orlando. I'd be willing to bet that it's no longer in service (I se
109 AustinAirport : Well not really. I dont think its right for the needs of the state.ill bet yall can tell im a 14 year old hot head full of outspoken opinions. NO Tol
110 Post contains links HPAEAA : Apparently... anyone else think we might be aiming a little low in the speed category? 110 MPH is good, but in the EU and Asia, there are much faster
111 Steeler83 : Wow, so I guess where you live, it's entirely a road network. Is there any public transit? How about the design of the roads. Do they have wide enoug
112 Steeler83 : Oh I hear you there. I do think that although 110 is considerably faster, it still pails largely in comparison to those trains in Europe and Asia. Th
113 Analog : Pay a visit to Houston. Be aware of what your state gov't has planned regarding toll roads (things like High Occupancy Toll roads, etc.)
114 MasseyBrown : Why should taxpayers in LA or San Diego pay to subsidize Nebraska-grown corn? Periodically some states, New York especially, complain that they pay m
115 57AZ : The Sunset still runs, but only LA-NOL. After Katrina, the railroads to the east were out and Amtrak terminated that portion of the Sunset. Yes they
116 D328 : You a PHL chinese food worker or do you thint the PHLwoRks is you sn? Sorry PHL doesn't WORK. THEY DELAY!
117 OzGlobal : Ah, the "Europe is flat, the US is 3-dimensional argument' again. This one is wheeled-out every time we have a discussion on HSR in the US. This is n
118 Airbazar : Are you serious? So in your math, 2x15=50? Yes, in some countries up to 80% of all cars run on diesel but diesel is at best 40% more economic and onl
119 Bond007 : Yes, I'm serious. No - 2x15 does not equal 50 ... but more to my point. That was a specific example, not based on the average mpg. I didn't say diese
120 Starlionblue : True about the average mpg. But most European cities are laid out very differently compared to most US cities. In Dallas, a small car like the Smart
121 Bond007 : I agree, but my point in this, is that we often use this "gas is twice as expensive in Europe" argument, for a big reason that Europeans use trains a
122 Cloudboy : Gas is NOT twice as expensive in Europe. The actual costs of the fuel is the same, and arguably a little lower, due to more limited demand. What makes
123 Starlionblue : Agree completely.
124 ModernArt : Just like they do in the United States. Although, like Europe, a huge portion of fuel taxes you and I and our European friends pay goes straight into
125 Type-Rated : Several years ago, I took a few trips on AMTRAK. One was CHI-DEN and CHI-HOU. The CHI-DEN trip was nice, it had an early evening departure and a mid m
126 Post contains links Positiverate : Amtrak's res system, crashed yesterday. http://www.philly.com/philly/news/20...__an_Amtrak_spokeswoman_said_.html
127 Bond007 : In the context of my post it is. ... to the consumer. The amount of tax is irrelevant to the "..coz gas is twice as much.." argument... although you
128 R2rho : Or take for example the MAD-BCN line. On the segment between Madrid and Zaragoza (about half the total distance) there ain't a single mile of flat te
129 Post contains links Type-Rated : AMTRAK & TWA. Here is a nice juicy little tidbit I came across on the Internet. Does anyone know if this ever came to fruition? http://query.nytimes.c
130 D328 : Probably also no nasty/rude TSA folk.
131 Cslusarc : I think that Amtrak is on the right course to improve its operations and financial position. Amtrak needs to set financial goals. One of these goals s
132 Post contains images Steeler83 : Kinda sounds like the Three Rivers or Capitol LTD. I remember taking the Three Rivers a few times from Lancaster to PGH. They prepared dinners for th
133 HPAEAA : With regards to the Capital Limited, I could see it being a little more operationally reliable before it is saved... I took it a while ago and it was
134 Steeler83 : Uhh... not so sure about that. I don't think anyone wants to spend 6 hours or so in Pittsburgh - in the middle of the night... The Capitol LTD arrive
135 57AZ : Actually, farebox recovery ratio is only one factor that Amtrak has to consider when it comes to routes and finances. It also has to look at where po
136 Post contains images PHLwok : LOL, nah, just some initials PHL definitely does not work, it's just unfortunately the airport I need to use the most.
137 ScottB : Actually, relatively few entirely new limited-access highways have been built in the last three decades. Many of the ones which have been built were
138 Steeler83 : So the Euro Tunnel project from about 1987(?) - 1992/3 turned out to be a financial flop? I would have never guessed. I guess it's too expensive to o
139 57AZ : Not as small as for airlines. Do you know how many highway vehicles the railroads operate in maintenance of their operations? It's well into the thou
140 Starlionblue : The Chunnel is not profitable in itself. But the total economic impact is most probably positive.
141 OzGlobal : The Channel Tunnel is a tremendous success: read the other statistics included and consider the millions of passengers and tonnes of frieght that use
142 Aa757first : AFAIK, my county has no public transport system set up at all. The neighboring county does have a "bus" system. As far as I can tell, its used only b
143 ScottB : If the Channel Tunnel is truly this huge success, the users of the tunnel ought to be willing to pay the economic cost of it. Since, as you claim, "m
144 R2rho : The problem with the Chunnel was that, in order to have the British approve it, they had to give in to their demands and accept their management meth
145 OzGlobal : Some people seem to be simply unaware or don't want to understand that your interstate system is a state sponsored transport infrastructure for your
146 ScottB : We do, in that trucking typically pays more in fuel taxes per mile traveled than automobiles do. The Federal excise tax on gasoline is 18.4 cents/gal
147 OzGlobal : You'll find this is more symbolic than commercial. And I have no problem with it being state sponsored, as it is critical infrastructure. Yes you pro
148 Steeler83 : According to my textbook for last semester's transportation planning class, the idea of the fuel tax to fund public transportation and transportation
149 Tonymctigue : Interesting. I took the Amtrak train from Boston Down to Washington & back up to New York & found it to be a most enjoyable experience. No check-in, n
150 ScottB : The electric wires, gas pipes, telephone wires, cable lines, etc. aren't "underlying infrastructure?" And you're still talking about a collection of
151 Post contains links Analog : Your textbook is either out of date or its author is a bit confused. The average fuel economy is now about 21mpg and has been there for about a decad
152 DCA-ROCguy : I haven't had time to research the questions of rail vs. air, and big expansion of rail in the US. But if I had to go on the arguments offered in this
153 Steeler83 : The textbook was a 2004-05 update, so I guess the author/editors were confused then... D'oh!
154 OzGlobal : Internet and voice bandwidth and content can effectively be brokered. Basically, society is best served by 'the pipes' of infrastructure being public
155 Post contains images Starlionblue : The public does pay for it with taxes. It is essentially impossible to pay for such a thing as the Chunnel in relation to those who receive economic
156 ScottB : Strange how I receive excellent quality service from wires and pipes which are privately owned then. And how the poorest service I receive is provide
157 Cloudboy : Ah, now THERE'S the issue right there! If you want to put your privately owned bus on the road, of course pending safety regulations and such, you ca
158 MasseyBrown : I'd say the creditors and banks came out of the airline bankruptcies almost whole. Stockholders, employees, and some lessors took most of the loss.
159 Post contains links OzGlobal : For your edification and enjoyment: http://www.railwaygazette.com/featur...pares-to-face-the-competition.html
160 787EWR : Air Shuttle: I've used to this on a weekly. LGA-DCA. Get to the airport, stand in line for your ticket or use the kiosk. On an early morning flight,
161 Yellowtail : Now if we can just get the proposed high speed TGV style train between Dallas and Houston of the ground that would be sweet..and the market is there..
162 Post contains links and images PHLBOS : I'd be very curious to see that comparison after FL drops their PHL-BOS after Nov. 6. Amtrak would then be cheaper than US. According to the EPA, the
163 Post contains images Starlionblue : If Soutwest management and the railway backers have an ounce of sense in this situation, Southwest would be allowed to offer train service in the rai
164 Steeler83 : I saw the thread about FL dropping PHL-BOS, but I didn't actually read it. I suppose the route is underperforming??? Eh, I would also be willing to b
165 PHLBOS : If its underperforming; it's partly due to FL's refusal to either retime a couple of its flights or beef up its frequency to make it more attractive
166 Spacecadet : This hasn't worked in any country that has tried it, and in fact cannot work for reasons that should be pretty obvious. Tracks are not like air. You
167 Steeler83 : I see what you mean about Amtrak being more expensive to fly at times. I didn't look up a PHI-BOS fare, but I did a search on NYP-WAS, and the fare s
168 Smcmac32msn : I don't know of any trip using Union Station in Chicago where you have a layover of 8+ hours. Lets think. Say your train station is 20 miles from you
169 Smcmac32msn : Just an edit to my post: The cost of the Amtrak WDC-BOS is $175. AA nonstop on the same day is $164 from DCA.
170 ScottB : Um, so you're essentially agreeing with me? I was being generous with 300-400 miles. I agree; however, projects like the Grand Parkway in Houston are
171 FlyPNS1 : But what existing transportation system is profitable? You certainly don't mean the airline industry which as a system hasn't produced a dime of long
172 Post contains links Irelayer : And then there is this which I am not sure a lot of people are aware of... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_High-Speed_Rail It is apparently i
173 Starlionblue : And I agree with that. But Acela is not fast enough. It's not even close to being fast enough. If the trip were running on French or German high spee
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