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High-speed rail boosters promise 'blended' transportation system

Original post made on Mar 16, 2012

A lower price tag, fewer tracks and a fresh commitment to fund rail improvements in north and south California are among the features that the California High-Speed Rail Authority plans to unveil in its revised business plan.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, March 16, 2012, 7:44 AM

Comments (15)

Posted by Andrew M., a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Mar 16, 2012 at 8:49 am

A perfect example of a government project run amok. The people of California (foolishly) gave the project approval at the ballot box and almost immediately both the initial costs as well as construction and projected costs have ballooned to over 147% over initial budget predictions.


Now the entrenched politicians are scrambling to find some way to salvage what small degree of credibility they still have and are looking to take their "high speed rail" fantasy and turn it into an overpriced "medium speed" Caltrain? Pardon the French but "wet the fork" are they thinking?! You've got to know your in trouble when your own Pravda-esque birdcage rag bags on your leadership, business plan and viability of ever coming to fruition.

Web Link

Oh yeah, just remember people. If the official government estimates are already saying we're "just" 147% over budget use your common sense and realize that figure is more likely to be somewhere in the 180-200+% over budget range.

More interesting comments from the peanut gallery...

Web Link

The state is broke, we cannot afford this, it's a bad idea, please stop the madness Gov. Brown! Oh wait, Gov. Brown...? We are soooooo screwed.

Posted by Bill, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Mar 16, 2012 at 9:08 am

What the high speed rail authority promises to do is re-arrange the deck chairs of the Titanic.

Dan Richard is a former VP of PG&E. How much trust do you put in anyone associated with this utility?

Posted by Poor Stupid Tax Payer, a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2012 at 5:50 am

high speed rail to Bakersfield? What a joke!

Posted by Tennessee Jed, a resident of Jensen Tract
on Mar 17, 2012 at 7:15 am

Oh this is perfect! Let's build the first small segment in an area where the land is easy to procure, it's flat and doesn't cause a real problem engineering wise. Also this would become the "camel's nose under the tent". and as these small segments in rulal areas are completed, it would bolster their stupid argument that well "we have the first segments and so we need to complete the whole damn thing."

And top of all this the money involved, really makes me wonder about how good this really is. It seems the only ones who are talking it up and think it's the best thing since rolled toilet paper is all of our state bureaucrats and legislatures. And we know how good a job they do.

This state is in the toilet, and as I said on another post, the influence in this state is driven not by the people, but by "commie-liberal-union-occupy whatever" interests outside of the people of California.

There is an ill wind blowing in California and I don't think the outcome will be very good.

Posted by ThomasD, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Mar 17, 2012 at 9:06 pm

Assuming critics are not Tea Party folks, they must not realize that $98 billion is a bargain compared to $120-170 billion in Highway and Airport expansion otherwise to be required connecting NorCal to SoCal by 2030.

We're spending $13 billion to rebuild a 8 mile Bay Bridge the right way. Yes, it costs $98 billion to build a world-class 800-mile, 4 track in urban areas, HSR system having 220 mph speed in the open segments, 10 minute train frequency, 98% on-time performance that generates operating profits the first year it opens.

Every other leading nation in the world can do it, except "can't build any great anymore" America. BUt let some nut in Washington start another useless war and we'll shell out $850 billion in Iraq, (direct costs), plus $1 Trillion in war veteran/family costs later.

Put on your thinking caps. The problem is getting Congress to invest more money in California HSR, not to lower our vision with a two track system the will have the same ins sues as the Northeast Corridor sharing track with freight trains and slow commuter trains. Until the SF Peninsula accepts that fact, its better for California HSR built 4 tracks and stop in Mountain View

Posted by charlie Brown, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Mar 19, 2012 at 8:23 am

Blended? I believe the only thing that's blended is the liquid the "Boosters" are imbibing at their planning meetings!

Posted by Harve, a resident of Downtown
on Mar 19, 2012 at 8:46 am

Anything the state does is bad, really bad. We don't need a train system. We can fly goods via American Express, and we can bring back the borax 20-mule teams for treks through the desert areas. Give me back my tax money!

Posted by Resident, a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Mar 19, 2012 at 9:34 am

Have any of you ever left the US? Never ridden on Europe's or China's excellent high speed rail systems? Apparently you want to keep letting the country fall behind the world in infrastructure and innovation. We are already seeing how well that is working for us. But don't worry, soon you won't have to worry about paying taxes because you will be right in there in line with the others that are unemployed do to our country falling behind in the world and there being no jobs here. Then your tune will change and you will be screaming for the government to support you with all the programs you are now so against! It is just like the ultra conservatives who think gay/lesbian rights are horrible unless a member of THEIR family is gay/lesbian (think Cheney for one) or Limbaugh ranting against drug use, oops.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Mar 19, 2012 at 9:48 am

Stacey is a registered user.

I'm a fan of high speed rail. I just don't see much value in building a system that won't first service the major metropolitan regions. It will be the *worst way* to build HSR. All it will do is sell Californians and the rest of America on the idea that HSR doesn't work. It's like trying to build the Transcontinental Railway by starting at the golden spike.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Mar 19, 2012 at 9:56 am

Stacey is a registered user.


It's hopeless to bring political stripe into this mix. The supposedly liberal peninsula cities are being conservative in their resistance to a 4-track configuration.

Posted by Resident, a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Mar 19, 2012 at 10:35 am

No they are being NIMBY in their resistance. It shouldn't be a liberal/conservative thing. I am a fiscal conservative that knows we cannot continue to fall behind the rest world in all things. The question is, "Do we want to be a world power in anything but our military?" If that is the only thing we are competing with we are doomed. We need a strong military, yes, we cannot lead the world by that alone. We need to start spending some of our resources here. Our forefathers built this country for the future. We are not even keeping up with the present.

Posted by Just Say No, a resident of Parkside
on Mar 19, 2012 at 10:52 am

This is a terrible project.

Have any of you looked at the route these rails will take across the central valley? They will destroy CRITICAL habitat...unbelievable. And, I am not a tree hugger by any stretch...but this state needs those Grasslands!

And anyone that thing the 'new' price tag will stay constant...come on now. It never happens in government - and especially not in this state.

The legal fees over law suits will grow. The over runs on this project will be off the charts.

I can drive to socal in less than 5 hours via I-5. I will then have my car and not have to rent one. I am not going to take a 'fast' train ride, just to be dumped in LA and then need ot spend more money to rent a car. Talked to my friends and they say the same thing.

Europe is a different story. This is wrong.

Just say NO

Posted by Harve, a resident of Downtown
on Mar 19, 2012 at 12:11 pm

I can drive my Hummer to SoCal in less than 4 hours. They put most tractor trailers on planes now anyway. Flying is the way to go. Save the Central Valley.

Posted by Bill, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Mar 19, 2012 at 1:05 pm

I second Just Say No comments -

The proposition that approved selling of bonds for this high speed rail passed by a slim margin. Obviously the people who voted YES didn't read the fine print. The only way to kill this thing is for the state legistrature to pass legislation to dissolve the HSR authority.

So the only group that can do away with idiotic project hasn't balanced a budget in the last nine years, are beholding to the construction unions, and owe big time to the power brokers who want to colonize the central valley.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Mar 19, 2012 at 10:08 pm

Stacey is a registered user.


I mean "conservative" in the sense of them wanting to conserve the way things are, preserve the status quo, use a 2-track "blended" railway rather than 4-track (inner tracks for HS, outer tracks for slower traffic). Basically the same thing as NIMBY.

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