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MaxConcrete

High Speed Rail / Texas Triangle

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Blue and red are both good

Yeah, I figured blue was obviously the most optimal. Red is not far behind though. I didn't realize they had a route in mind between 45 and 290/6

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according to a few places Southwest would support high speed rail this time. i even just read that at the time of the last push for high speed rail in the early 90s that southwest was confined to only IN state flights.. no where outside of Texas. so of course they opposed the hell out of the T bone or w/e plan it was they were proposing to connect all the major metros in the state. it would of put them out of business. thats not the case anymore and supposably southwest wouldnt mind getting out of the regional game..

Southwest could only fly to Texas and the adjoining states from Love Field in Dallas due to the incredibly moronic Wright Amendment, which fortunately disappears this year. From Houston, or any other location, Southwest has always been able to fly anywhere in the US.

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Either way it definitely would of put a dent in their business, and most can agree southwest would rather focus on long distance trips now than regional flights.

Edited by cloud713

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I see that there is talk of doing a line extension from Dallas to OKC, if that's the case, has there been any talk of doing a line extension from Houston to New Orleans?

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I see that there is talk of doing a line extension from Dallas to OKC, if that's the case, has there been any talk of doing a line extension from Houston to New Orleans?

The Feds have one shown on their high speed rail map, but I haven't heard much of it.. I don't see that having nearly as high a ridership as any of the Texas lines.

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The Feds have one shown on their high speed rail map, but I haven't heard much of it.. I don't see that having nearly as high a ridership as any of the Texas lines.

The Feds showed a lot of lines on their map that made no sense whatsoever. One line needs to be built and it needs to be proven to be economically viable and then others will follow.

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Topic hijacks are going to be removed, so spare us all the trouble.

 

 

 

 

I'll have to dig out the link, but I read earlier today that a 2016 groundbreaking for the Dallas high-speed rail is envisioned.  Seems optimistic..

 

 

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Topic hijacks are going to be removed, so spare us all the trouble.

 

 

 

 

I'll have to dig out the link, but I read earlier today that a 2016 groundbreaking for the Dallas high-speed rail is envisioned.  Seems optimistic..

 

http://impactnews.com/houston-metro/the-woodlands/houston-to-dallas-high-speed-rail-could-break-ground-in-two-/

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In case anyone is interested in what type of equipment might be used (as noted in Trinton's link above):

 

http://www.usjhsr.com/usjhsr/N700-I_Bullet.html

 

Check out the starting acceleration speed.

yeahh.. definitely no stops in College Station or The Woodlands, or anywhere else between the two cities for that matter.. still wouldnt mind seeing an extension to Galveston but i dont see them needing nearly as many train cars for that route.

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yeahh.. definitely no stops in College Station or The Woodlands, or anywhere else between the two cities for that matter.. still wouldnt mind seeing an extension to Galveston but i dont see them needing nearly as many train cars for that route.

I think that the big question around stops is whether they intend on running two tracks in each direction or if they are running just one. If they are running only one for cost savings, then the stops would limit their ability to run non-stops between Dallas and Houston. If they're running two tracks, then the intermediate stops would have very little impact.

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I think that the big question around stops is whether they intend on running two tracks in each direction or if they are running just one. If they are running only one for cost savings, then the stops would limit their ability to run non-stops between Dallas and Houston. If they're running two tracks, then the intermediate stops would have very little impact.

for sure, i was just saying no stops in reference to the 2 mph gain per second acceleration speed of the train when it starts up (and probably a similar deceleration rate when it slows down)..

i would assume they will just run one track in each direction. if they insisted on having stops somewhere along the way for the occasional trip, they could branch off the track to double track just at the local station.

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for sure, i was just saying no stops in reference to the 2 mph gain per second acceleration speed of the train when it starts up (and probably a similar deceleration rate when it slows down)..

 

 

The 2mph/sec equates to reaching top speed in 1 minute 42.5 seconds. Or (in car terms) 0-60mph in 30 seconds.

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The 2mph/sec equates to reaching top speed in 1 minute 42.5 seconds. Or (in car terms) 0-60mph in 30 seconds.

alright, i guess thats not bad at all.. just sounds awfully slow compared to cars nowadays...

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haha yes.. i suppose your right. anyways i still hope they dont go down the 290/6 route with a stop in college station, and instead opt for the red or blue lines down 249 or 45. strange they mentioned in that most recent article that the line options were 290, 45, and 59 though.. i havent seen/heard anything about a potential route down 59.

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The Monterrey-OKC route pisses me off. First train paid for by the gov and it skips Houston.

Doesn't matter, assuming Republicans keep control of the state government, there's no way that they let the gov train finish before the private HOU-DAL train. They want that train bad so that they can point out the differences between the TX high speed rail project and the CA project.

If that project can launch on budget and be successful, it's a huge selling point to pitch to businesses about why they should come to Texas.

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If they were smart they would share a station in Dallas so ultimately you can go from houston to okc via transfer.

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If they were smart they would share a station in Dallas so ultimately you can go from houston to okc via transfer.

True

Doesn't matter, assuming Republicans keep control of the state government, there's no way that they let the gov train finish before the private HOU-DAL train. They want that train bad so that they can point out the differences between the TX high speed rail project and the CA project.

If that project can launch on budget and be successful, it's a huge selling point to pitch to businesses about why they should come to Texas.

Mexico line has lot of implications houston line doesn't

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True

Mexico line has lot of implications houston line doesn't

That's the point in the conversation that supporting detail is normally provided.

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That's the point in the conversation that supporting detail is normally provided.

There is a lot of business between Mexico and the us and this line could help jump start that to a further degree. Also thaws the relationship in general. But there is no funding on our side at the moment I see a PPP solution most likely.

Edited by Slick Vik

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I thought Texas Central Railway said they'd have more info on the planned route between Dallas and Houston by now. Inevitable government study delays? Funding issues? Securing land purchases before announcing station locations?

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Eh, in the unlikely event that this thing happens, I'd be shocked if trains started running any sooner than like 2035.  It's a shame. 

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I thought Texas Central Railway said they'd have more info on the planned route between Dallas and Houston by now. Inevitable government study delays? Funding issues? Securing land purchases before announcing station locations?

Hopefully, it's securing land purchases before announcing the route. I would expect that they would want to keep the route under wraps and work to purchase the necessary land through shell companies to keep acquisition costs down.

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From CityLab (formerly Atlantic Cities):

http://www.citylab.com/commute/2014/06/the-big-texas-plan-to-copy-japans-high-speed-rail-success/372984/

 

Says this project has been progressing "under the radar" for 4+ years, and is undergoing an environmental impact study that could take 2-3 years.  Expected delivery (or hopeful) delivery of this high speed rail system is 2021.

 

Apparently this was the route picked by the Japanese out of a possible 91 others!  So must be some real traction behind it.

Edited by arche_757
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From what I've been reading, it sounds like one of the biggest concerns is potential opposition from Southwest Airlines, who's been successful in getting this killed in the past.  Southwest has been neutral on the project in public comments so far, but there is certainly a possibility that they will pull a move at some point in the process.  Texas Central seems to have their act together so they might be able to handle that if it happens.

 

As I think I mentioned before, I think that the biggest thing that this project has going for it is that nothing would make state leadership happier than to be able to stick it to California by getting a privately launched high speed line launched before the government funded California line.  I think that they will try to smooth the way anyway they can to achieve that.

 

The state has been putting a big effort behind recruiting CA companies for years.  Getting this done would give them a huge selling point.

Edited by livincinco

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Back in the day, taking Southwest from Houston to Austin or San Antonio was a far more viable option than it is now; shoot, even HOU - DAL isn't the no brainer that it used to be unless it's just for one day.  It's also a much larger airline than it was even ten years ago.  I suspect that the Texas Triangle Southwest started with probably isn't as integral a part of its business model these days.

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Back in the day, taking Southwest from Houston to Austin or San Antonio was a far more viable option than it is now; shoot, even HOU - DAL isn't the no brainer that it used to be unless it's just for one day.  It's also a much larger airline than it was even ten years ago.  I suspect that the Texas Triangle Southwest started with probably isn't as integral a part of its business model these days.

 

Agreed, but I have heard that its a very profitable route for them.  I'm with you, I'd like to think that they won't contest it, but it is certainly a possibility that they will.

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Southwest 20 years ago was a shell of the airline it is today.  I don't think they will fight this development much - as it will take at least till 2021 till its open (and that is optimistic).  LUV has had to operate with restrictions, but with the Wright Amendment lifted/ending I would suspect that Dallas Love Field will start flying less frequently to Hobby and more often to some other cities.  Hobby on the other hand will also start offering flights to Mexico and other Latin American markets here in a few years.

 

I would think the folks working on this focused first on making Southwest happy.  Perhaps that is how they got the new terminal at Hobby over Uniteds great posturing and threats?  Remember these aren't just business men, some of them are former government officials who held pretty powerful positions at one time and have connections.  I think this system has teeth where the other one proposed in the 1980s was all bark.

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Agreed, but I have heard that its a very profitable route for them.  I'm with you, I'd like to think that they won't contest it, but it is certainly a possibility that they will.

 

I just checked Southwest's website and I can get a one-way ticket from Houston to Dallas for $90 on Monday, July 21 (just picked a random weekday about a month ahead).  flight time is 55 mins.  I have to wonder if Southwest doesn't view it as a big deal since the proposed travel time is 90 mins and maybe they'll have to charge similar or higher fares for the trip.

 

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Agreed with Slick Vik.  I think this thing would have been stopped by now, if Southwest was really trying.

 

The rail - might be 90 minutes, same with the air travel.  But figure in check-in lines, baggage claim and the like and you may have a figure closer to 2.5 hours or so for air travel.  IF (clearly a big IF) you didn't rent a car in either Dallas or Houston you would be off the train and out of the station in 95 minutes.  Presumably you would have the chance to arrive at the station within 5 minutes of departure and still make the train (unlike air travel).

 

Southwest is fine.  They've got a lot more options than they did in 1980 or 1984 or whenever the last attempt at HSR between Dallas and Houston was announced.  This line will probably allow them to offer Dallas to Calgary flights they may have wanted to open in the past but can't because of the Wright Amendment and the need to have 30 planes dedicated to HOU-LUV daily (or whatever the number is).

 

This proposed HSR would be a boon for DART and METRO and any other bus lines and taxi cabs.  It could really open up how businessmen/women operate between the two metro areas.  They could even eventually extend it to Denver with stops in OKC.  Or to Chicago through Tulsa and KC?  Who knows?

Edited by arche_757

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Southwest is a national airline now if they had a issue with this they would've stopped it in its tracks already.

 

Can you please expand on how a company that doesn't even make the Fortune 100 would have stopped a completely private venture "in its tracks"?

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Can you please expand on how a company that doesn't even make the Fortune 100 would have stopped a completely private venture "in its tracks"?

 

So now this thread will devolve into a series of "one sentence responses"  ....Great!  I can't wait!

 

And lets all agree that Southwest does have a lobby - all the airlines do.  Southwest is the 160th largest company based on Fortunes list of 500.

Edited by arche_757

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Can you please expand on how a company that doesn't even make the Fortune 100 would have stopped a completely private venture "in its tracks"?

 

Here's some detail on it.

 

http://www.psmag.com/navigation/business-economics/how-high-speed-rail-died-in-texas-thrived-in-spain-32021/

 

 

The TGV in Texas, meanwhile, folded in 1993. What killed it was not just a lack of private investment but also Southwest Airlines, the Dallas-based carrier, which noticed a threat to its home turf and launched a “sweeping, aggressive public relations campaign throughout the state to discredit TGV and prevent the company from meeting its fundraising deadlines,” according to the Austinist website.

So the last time Southwest did it through an aggressive pr campaign.  No sign of that so far so maybe they've decided they can live with it.

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So now this thread will devolve into a series of "one sentence responses"  ....Great!  I can't wait!

 

And lets all agree that Southwest does have a lobby - all the airlines do.  Southwest is the 160th largest company based on Fortunes list of 500.

 

You are correct.  Southwest is the 160th largest with an annual revenue of about $17 billion.  JT Central, the backers of Texas Central, have an annual revenue of approx. $14 billion.

 

I agree that Southwest has a lobby, but they don't have the power to get this killed on their own.  They can certainly make it more difficult for Texas Central to get into business, but it would be a potentially risky move on their part to do so.

 

Remember that when Southwest opposed Texas TGV, they had to be very open and public with their opposition to the point that they even had to publicly hint that they would relocate their corporate office out of state if the project moved forward. 

 

The most important thing to remember though is that Texas TGV actually required a change in Federal Law to allow them to utilize their financing model.  What ultimately killed them was the passive act of not changing that law and potentially Southwest's lobby was part of that lack of action.  To the best of my knowledge, Texas Central doesn't need any action like that to allow them to proceed.

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Can you please expand on how a company that doesn't even make the Fortune 100 would have stopped a completely private venture "in its tracks"?

You were the one that brought up the speculation in the first place, I squashed it. Stick with your original position.

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The most important thing to remember though is that Texas TGV actually required a change in Federal Law to allow them to utilize their financing model.  What ultimately killed them was the passive act of not changing that law and potentially Southwest's lobby was part of that lack of action.  To the best of my knowledge, Texas Central doesn't need any action like that to allow them to proceed.

 

I don't know what Federal Law you are talking about. But I do know that what actually killed the Texas TGV was the lack of public financing from the state.  There were two teams competing for the franchise.  One team was up front about requiring some level of public subsidy. The other team claimed to not need any public subsidy, won the franchise, and then could not do the job, because, lo and behold, they needed a public subsidy, which was not forthcoming.

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I don't know what Federal Law you are talking about. But I do know that what actually killed the Texas TGV was the lack of public financing from the state.  There were two teams competing for the franchise.  One team was up front about requiring some level of public subsidy. The other team claimed to not need any public subsidy, won the franchise, and then could not do the job, because, lo and behold, they needed a public subsidy, which was not forthcoming.

 

That's from the attached New York Times article. 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/07/us/bullet-train-failed-once-but-its-back.html

 

Quote from the article-

Texas T.G.V.’s proposal was especially ambitious. The company envisioned using technology used in France to build a 600-mile network connecting Dallas, Houston, Austin and San Antonio in less than a decade. Company executives predicted they could draw more than nine million riders a year by 2014.

Some 70 percent of the project’s $6 billion price tag was to be financed through tax-exempt private bonds, more than federal law allowed a company to borrow using that type of financing. The venture hinged on the company’s changing federal law to ease the restrictions.

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So the last time Southwest did it through an aggressive pr campaign.  No sign of that so far so maybe they've decided they can live with it.

 

I don't want to belabor this, my point was simply to not assume that Southwest will not work against this just because they have not yet done so.  I certainly hope that they won't oppose this, but business is about timing and there is no question that Southwest is very well aware of this and is assessing the impact to their business.

 

It's not always the right strategic move to announce your intentions immediately.  Sometimes it's better to wait for the right opportunity.

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I don't want to belabor this, my point was simply to not assume that Southwest will not work against this just because they have not yet done so.  I certainly hope that they won't oppose this, but business is about timing and there is no question that Southwest is very well aware of this and is assessing the impact to their business.

 

It's not always the right strategic move to announce your intentions immediately.  Sometimes it's better to wait for the right opportunity.

 

That is true.  It sounds like last time around the environment and deal were different from what's now in play.  No doubt TCR has learned lessons from that as well.

 

I was wondering in earlier posts about fares and travel times because it may be that Southwest's best bet is to out-compete the railway on fares.

 

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