Nevada Senators Stand Up For XpressWest

Mar 14th, 2013 | Posted by

Last week we learned that two leading Congressional Republicans were trying to block approval of a $5.5 billion federal loan for the XpressWest high speed rail project that would connect Las Vegas to Victorville and eventually serve Los Angeles. This week, both of Nevada’s U.S. Senators – including Republican Dean Heller – rose to defend the project and the loan request:

Senator Harry Reid says the Xpress West project is “something that we should do.”

Senator Dean Heller says the rail between Las Vegas and Victorville “promises a major shot in the arm” for Southern Nevada’s economy.

Reid’s support is not surprising, given that he has been a strong backer of the XpressWest project since 2010 and has no love lost for right-wingers Jeff Sessions and Paul Ryan, the two Republicans trying to block the federal loan.

But Heller’s support of XpressWest is somewhat surprising, given that many Republicans in the House and Senate are now ideologically opposed to high speed rail projects even when their benefits are obvious and local demand is great. Heller’s backing for XpressWest provides important cover to the Obama Administration on this loan proposal. Even though they should approve the loan regardless of what Republicans think, there’s no doubt that it helps if Obama and Ray LaHood can point out that the project has the bipartisan support of both Nevada Senators.

While I haven’t seen any comments from California’s U.S. Senators on the proposal, I would expect both Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer to support it as well.

With strong political support from Nevada and California, the XpressWest loan request ought to sail toward approval.

  1. Andy M
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 03:17
    #1

    Good news. The opponents may be good at making a lot of noise, but the promotors may have more support than they dare to believe.

  2. BMF from San Diego
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 07:37
    #2

    $5.5 Billion is a lot when considering that the line does not reach LA Union Station or a key destination in Vegas. Please correct if wrong. Maps would help a lot.

    Ryan Reply:

    It’s 30 million per mile or so, not a bad mark. I think the destination in Vegas is a yet to be built station very convenient to the strip.

  3. Dylan
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 07:46
    #3

    This would be a good topic for Nate Silver to dive further into.

  4. Alon Levy
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 08:08
    #4

    Off-topic: Krugman just linked a paper that argues that passenger rail does reduce road traffic externalities, using a change in German rail regulations that made it possible to raise rail service levels as a natural experiment.

    joe Reply:

    And cited within

    Green Infrastructure: The Effects of Urban Rail Transit on Air Quality
    http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/aea/aejep/2012/00000004/00000001/art00003

    The transportation sector is a major source of air pollution worldwide, yet little is known about the effects of transportation infrastructure on air quality. This paper quantifies the effects of one major type of transportation infrastructure—urban rail transit—on air quality using the sharp discontinuity in ridership on opening day of a new rail transit system in Taipei. We find that the opening of the Metro reduced air pollution from one key tailpipe pollutant, carbon monoxide, by 5 to 15 percent. Little evidence that the opening of the Metro affected ground level ozone pollution is found however.

  5. Paul Druce
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 08:10
    #5

    Problem is that they will not be able to afford the loan at all. Why not just let Nevada wither away and die anyhow?

    Brian Reply:

    Way to be an effective passenger rail advocate there. Are statements like “Why not just let Nevada wither away and die anyhow?” Part of RailPAC’s strategic plan for growing cross state relations with Nevada stakeholders and increase your positive profile in DC?

    Alon Levy Reply:

    Paul Dyson = RailPAC
    Paul Druce = independent blogger

    Non-institutional people are always going to have more latitude to be inflammatory. You think I’d be constantly ranting about how awful the US is about everything if I were in charge of an organization?

    Brian Reply:

    Paul Druce I mixed you and Paul Dyson up. AFAIK you don’t speak for RailPAC. Still asking for a state to drop dead is counterproductive.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    I believe that a coordinated plan to provide HSR services within CA and between CA and NV should be supported. Unfortunately we do not have that happy state of affairs. If there had been a plan then construction would have begun in the south so that both the CA and the CA-NV routes would have been anchored in LA and would have had some utility (LA – Palmdale) at an early stage. It would also be better for taxpayers if there were a clear agreement on technology and systems to permit interoperability over all routes. What we will really have, for at least a decade, is a stranded segment from Las Vegas to Victorville and another stranded segment from Madera to Bakersfield with perhaps some conventional rail connections. Will they sell some tickets? Of course, but I doubt if there will be sufficient patrons to cover a meaningful percentage of costs, while the whole scenario will convince the naysayers that the exercise is futile. Not a good start for the brave new world of HSR in the USA.

    joe Reply:

    The problems above are due to “reality” – the world of decision making isn’t perfect. You are arguing for nearly impossible things given the order of events and complex dependencies you want in place.

    I believe that a coordinated plan to provide HSR services within CA and between CA and NV should be supported. Unfortunately we do not have that happy state of affairs. If there had been a plan then construction would have begun in the south so that both the CA and the CA-NV routes would have been anchored in LA and would have had some utility (LA – Palmdale) at an early stage.

    The CAHSRA cannot write a business or project plan to coordinate with a non-funded, private proposal. It cannot match technology with a TBD project that has no existing technology. The shit storm and lawsuits would stop such a project plan.

    If we tied the two together on the CA end, then a vendor could easily give the xpresswest prospers a few dollars to preselect their products and game the CAHSRA’s selection and competitive bid.

    I also am very disappointed that you fail to acknowledge the GAO’s 2009 study about coordinating and establishing a national strategy for HSR.

    The GAO, in 2009, recommended the Feds step in to coordinate a US HSR capacity. One was to coordinate systems and services. Some of the GAO recommendation were completed and others are TBD.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    How could the vendors game the products? Maybe the signaling, but the rolling stock wouldn’t need to be produced by the same manufacturer. As long as everything’s built to the same standards, it’s perfectly possible to have DX buy Velaros and CAHSR buy AGVs.

    Jonathan Reply:

    Uh.. for what platform heights?

    Alon Levy Reply:

    Pick one and then tell the vendors to build to it; all the trains are within a couple centimeters of one another anyway. 4′ is a good Schelling point.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    gawd no because then the trains might just be a little bit like the ones Amtrak uses.
    Nevermind that they would be a little bit like the ones Shinkansen use. Or the ones Spain uses. Or the ones….

    Jonathan Reply:

    Oh dear, is that NEC bigotry strikes again? Last I hear,t, Amtrak operates the California Zephyr, which has boarding from 8in ATOR in Emoryville.

    And, in point of fact, Europe has standardized on _two_ platform heights for high-speed rail. The (EU Directive 96/48/EC calls for heights of 550mm or 760mm, neither of which isn’t even close to NEC platform height. As you note, Spain is an outlyer, with HSR platforms at 1250mm. For crying out loud, even the UK built HS11 with 760mm platforms and HS2 is going to be either 550mm or 760mm.

    See: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Railway_platform_height#European_Union_high_speed_rail.
    (No, I’m not going to manually wrap it in a damn href=. )

    Alon: don’t be dense. _who_ gets to “pick one”? Who gets to order trainsets first?
    Or build platforms first??

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Will be painful to see those rebuilt Comarrows coming into the station.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    All the existing trainsets with the exception of the Talgos have a floor height in the 1,250 mm area, give or take (and a few cm of difference, while a violation of the ADA, is no bigger a violation than the ones that are already written into the standards for train width vs. platform clearance).

    Jonathan Reply:

    and what on Earth makes either of you think theat either CHSRA or XpressWest is going to choose some legacy NEC platform height? Or that the two will choose the same hieght?

    I assume you know Amtrak in the Western US doesn’t use NEC platform heights. In fact tthe Federal Register seems to say that cars in the West of the US should have a floor height of 15in above top of rail. To quote 49CFR37.85 (edocket.access.gpo.gov/2006/06-1658.htm) for compatibility with Amtrak:

    To ensure coordination of these requirements for platform
    accessibility with rail cars, a proposed amendment to Sec. 37.85 would
    require new cars purchased for commuter rail systems to have floor
    heights identical to those of Amtrak cars serving the area in which the
    commuter system will be operated. This means that cars in the eastern
    part of the U.S. would have floor heights of 48 inches above top of
    rail, while those in the western part of the U.S. would have floor
    heights of 15 inches above top of rail. The purpose of this proposal is
    to prevent situations–some of which the Department has encountered–in
    which Amtrak and commuter rail cars with different floor heights use
    the same station platforms, complicating the provision of level entry
    boarding.

    (Never mind that California Public Utilities Commission’s General Order 26-D requires a plaform height of 8in above top-of-rail.)

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Okay, no NEC platform height. How about Shinkansen platform height? Ya know the most successful HSR network. Lots of vendors competing to build things for them.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    Nearly all the trainsets today have the same floor height to within a few centimeters. The Velaro is the same floor height as the NEC platform height, the Shinkansen is about an inch higher. Why not?

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Shinkansen wouldn’t be able to go to stations built for a stereotypical Velaro. Too wide. Conversely if the system was built for Shinkansen-ish trains stereotypical Velaros could come into the station but the gap between the platform and the train would be very wide. IRT trains versus BMT/IND trains kinda thing. On the third hand plop a 60 Hz Shinkansen down between Westerly and Kingston and it could pull into Providence or New Haven without a problem. Might have to fiddle with the transformer and take the rub boards off the platform edge.

    Keep in mind that as trains get older their floors get lower. Wheels wear and get trued. Springs sag. Other parts wear. New NEC trains have a nominal 51 inch floor. 45 years later when they get sold off to California they have 49 inch high floors. Or whatever it is after Arrows is get rebuilt into Comets Ibs and they get rebuilt into Horizons.

    http://149.136.20.80/rail/dor/assets/File/August_30.2012/Caltrans_Comet_IB_SJVRC_Presentation_-_08.27.12-B.Tsukamoto.pdf

    Making the mid car vestibule into more seats! Taking out the automatic doors to the platform and putting in manual doors!

    thatbruce Reply:

    @Jonathan:

    (Never mind that California Public Utilities Commission’s General Order 26-D requires a plaform height of 8in above top-of-rail.)

    26-D’s 8″ limit is for tracks shared with freight.

    Jonathan Reply:

    @thatbruce:

    Yes, CPUC General Report 26-D applies to track shared with FRA-compatible freight.
    Which under the “blended” plan recently approved by CHSRA, includes the Caltrain Corridor, from San Jose to somewhere just south of 4th and King

    @Adirondacker and Alon:
    Current Federal regulations require 15in car floor height in the Western US, for compatibility with Amtrak“.
    Clem’s blog has a good description of the maze of conflicting regulations, I have no idea what Clatrains has done with the refurbished Arrow/Comet cars, but they claim ADA-compliant access and seating.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Making the floors in a Comarrow 15 inches high would be nearly impossible. Which makes me think the 15 inch floor height is a suggestion not a enforceable regulation.

    Jonathan Reply:

    Looks like they’re p planning to have passengers climb up lots of steps.
    With a lift-on-wheels at each station for ADA passengers. Dwell times go up significantly.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Joe: The FRA can refuse a loan unless certain criteria are met, including compatibility, if they so desire. For the same reason they should be refusing funding for CA HSR until there is a single signalling and PTC system. Will they?
    I still am amazed at the posters here who don’t seem to give a damn how much money is spent and how screwed up the process, just give me my Lionel set.

    joe Reply:

    Joe: The FRA can refuse a loan unless certain criteria are met, including compatibility, if they so desire. For the same reason they should be refusing funding for CA HSR until there is a single signalling and PTC system. Will they?M/blockquote>
    No. and that will be another wrong assertion from the expert.

    You demand funding and engineering dependencies between CAHSRA and TBD xpresswest. It is naive to both law and basic project management.

    Another example of why your approach has failed. Idealism unencumbered by achievement.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    So what would you rather see at Palmdale, cross platform connections or through trains? Are you aware of the FRA criteria for these loans by the way?

    synonymouse Reply:

    I’ll say cross-platform because in the end PB will opt for systemwide non-integration.

    I acknowledge this is a radical position which flies in the face of a lot of official puffery but I don’t believe there will any “blend” on the Peninsula nor diesel standard Amtrak on the “Orphan Arra” either. I base this on an intuition that PB will be true to its Bechtelian(viz. reptilian)instincts for proprietary segregation to maximize takehome over the long term. It has certainly worked with BART, PB’s pet. When it comes to mixing PB is as hardline as George Wallace.

    The assorted variants of Deserted Xprss will pick up on PB-CHSRA disinterest and ambivalence and go ahead with whatever tech du jour appeals to them.

    synonymouse Reply:

    A confirmation of this strategy would be for PB to insist on certain features of the “California” version of the Amtrak-NEC trainsets that would be make them just incompatible enough to ship them back east to operate there. Insurance.

    PB, as Junior Soprano would way, “slippery fucks”.

    synonymouse Reply:

    to not ship

    joe Reply:

    So what would you rather see at Palmdale, cross platform connections or through trains? Are you aware of the FRA criteria for these loans by the way?

    I’d like to see the proposed xpresswest project funded. I’d like to see HSR bid, selected and construction started. I’d like the law to be followed so CAHSRA doesn’t get sued and stopped.

    As I cautioned, it would be reckless if not illegal to have the CAHSRA create compatibility requirements or establish technical dependencies with xpresswest, currently a private sector proposal to the FRA. It may well be that some parties hired or involved with expresswest may also bid on the CAHSRA project.

    Easily, such dependencies would tie the CAHSRA bids up in litigation and CA would lose all funding.

    synonymouse Reply:

    What kind of nonsense is this? “I’d like the law to be followed so CAHSRA doesn’t get sued and stopped.” What law? Jerry makes it up as he goes along. The judges are in his pocket.

    This is strictly a contractor mafia turf war. The single overriding issue here is that PB retain utter control of the CHSRA and the project. Interfacing with any iteration of Deserted Xprss could open the door, however slightly, to other interests and parties that could attempt to influence CAHSR. PB is not about to allow this. See Van Ark and SNCF. Maximizing the bottom line is paramount.

    That is why Ring the Bay will do the phoenix. BART is PB. They will build a segregated Orphan ARRA “test track” and count on the bosses to come up with enough funds to wire it and Amtrak to provide enough neo-Acelas to run some trains for the curious. The foamers will jump for joy and the “Declinists” will also celebrate. Each will have won, but the foamers will ultimately prevail if it takes the machine 50 years to squeeze the so many billions required to take standalone proprietary Fresno Area Rapid Transit statewide.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Joe: Answer the question. And by the way I said that the FRA could put compatibility conditions on the loan, not CHSRA. It may be a “private” project but it will be 95% public funds. Every lender has a right to put covenants into loan terms. Compatible technology doesn’t have to mean single source suppliers, hence Siemens and Alstom HSR trains for Eurostar. There will only be one chance at getting an HSR system built. You should be more concerned that it is done well rather than just laying a few miles of track among the tumbleweeds.

    joe Reply:

    Joe: Answer the question.

    Why? Who wouldn’t want a single seat? I do and that’s why I want to correct your misinformed and counter productive “watch dog” complaing.

    Your wrote

    I believe that a coordinated plan to provide HSR services within CA and between CA and NV should be supported. Unfortunately we do not have that happy state of affairs. If there had been a plan then construction would have begun in the south so that both the CA and the CA-NV routes would have been anchored in LA and would have had some utility (LA – Palmdale) at an early stage. It would also be better for taxpayers if there were a clear agreement on technology and systems to permit interoperability over all routes. What we will really have, for at least a decade, is a stranded segment from Las Vegas to Victorville and another stranded segment from Madera to Bakersfield with perhaps some conventional rail connections. Will they sell some tickets? Of course, but I doubt if there will be sufficient patrons to cover a meaningful percentage of costs, while the whole scenario will convince the naysayers that the exercise is futile. Not a good start for the brave new world of HSR in the USA.

    What you specifically complain about was not possible — being crank is not being an advocate.

    A watch dog that barks at people at the door helps – a watch dog that barks at squirrels ion the telephone wire is a nuisance.

    It is not possible for the CAHSRA to have coordinated with a private sector proposal and met the ARRA and federal requirements.

    Your advocacy is ungrounded in reality and sucks.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    So Joe, you are happy if the FRA gives a loan to XpressWest to build a stand alone, incompatible system? You accuse me of idealism and other sins in trying to influence a decision that has not yet been made? The reality is that the FRA has not awarded a loan, so my advocacy in trying to influence the terms of that loan is thoroughly grounded in reality. I repeat, it is better to have compatible systems with single seat rides from LV to both northern and southern CA, especially if the long term aim is a regional network. You either don’t care, or have skin in some other outcome.
    Or are so childish that you can’t wait to open the box under the Christmas tree. Perhaps you should satisfy yourself with a circle of O gauge and leave real transportation to grown ups?

    joe Reply:

    So Joe, you are happy if the FRA gives a loan to XpressWest to build a stand alone, incompatible system?

    Absolutely not.
    Disagreeing with counter productive tactics isn’t advocating for incompatibility.
    First there is no incompatibility. None.
    There’s no xpresswest at this time – it’s a proposal from the private sector.

    You accuse me of idealism and other sins in trying to influence a decision that has not yet been made?

    You complain without regard for the legal or piratical constraints. Idealism unencumbered by problem solving.

    The CAHSRA has to go to bid and meet tight deadlines or lose billions. There are laws to flollow and lawsuits if anything can be challenged.

    It’s naïve and counter productive such as now, complaining that CAHSRA should have some plan with xpresswest.

    I can’t see how they can do that right now. It’s too soon and solves little but addds much risk. So why complain as if they should have already begun?

    Explain exactly HOW, the CAHSRA *could have* negotiate a compatible rail system with Xpresswest.

    Show some professionalism and try to rebut some of the issues I raised.

    LaHood saw through your BS.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Joe: it’s a simple proposition that you cannot grasp. The CHSRA has a project. XpressWest has a proposal for which they want a taxpayer funded FRA loan. I say XW should not get a loan of my and your money unless their project is technically compatible with California’s. Perfectly legal, perfectly sensible, does not require any action by CHSRA, conforms with public policy to build a network of HSR, seemingly beyond your mind to comprehend. And what the hell is a piratical constraint? I am the one trying to solve a problem (incompatibility) before it exists. Your idealism seems to dream of a happy ending without doing anything to bring it about.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Perfectly legal, perfectly sensible, does not require any action by CHSRA, conforms with public policy to build a network of HSR, seemingly beyond your mind to comprehend.

    What incompatibilities have they announced? About the only thing we know with reasonable assurance is that they will both be standard gauge and eventually used 25kV 60Hz electric supply.

    Joey Reply:

    Platform height and loading gauge are currently unknown for both systems.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    so possible incompatibilities being seen are speculative? They are going to get around to it some day. Even if California hasn’t decided anything when Desert Express is asking for Requests for Information ( not Requests for Proposals ) part of the specification can be something like “easy conversion to compatibility with whatever system California decides on”. Wide loading gauge with high platform would probably be cheapest to convert to something else. Just move the tracks if they guessed incorrectly. Not as cheap as building it to be compatible from the outset but not outrageous amounts of money either.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    2/3s of the world’s HSR ridership uses 1,250 mm platforms. The NEC is 3 cm short of that, which American transit agencies pretend is compatible (it kind of is).

    joe Reply:

    Perfectly legal, perfectly sensible, does not require any action by CHSRA, conforms with public policy to build a network of HSR, seemingly beyond your mind to comprehend.

    What incompatibilities have they announced? About the only thing we know with reasonable assurance is that they will both be standard gauge and eventually used 25kV 60Hz electric supply.

    Bingo. No evidence of incompatibilities or evidence they indend incompatibilities.

    Look at the expresswest website’s network map:

    http://www.xpresswest.com/network.html

    The animated line runs from Las Vegas to SF and also to San Diego via the CAHSR system. Looks compatible to me.

    Jonathan Reply:

    @Joe: and absolutely no reason to expect _compatibility_.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Meh.

    … Americans think that normal body temperature is 98.6. It’s not, because normal body temperature is 37, rounded up …. Different studies come up with different averages expressed to one decimal point. Use the blunt ended thermometer in your mouth and you get a different answer than if you use the pointy ended thermometer. But both of thermometers are accurate. My temperature is never 98.643, it’s either 98.6 or 98.7. When I tell the doctor that my temperature was 101.6 two hours ago it’s more interesting that it’s over 100 than it’s 101.6 versus 101.5. Or 102.6 since I used the rounded thermometer in my mouth instead of the pointy one. When you read that Shinkansen platforms are 1250 mm is that because they can be between 1200 and 1300 and 1250 is the average? Or is it because they are between 1241 and 1258 and 1250 is the median?

    Shinkansen are Plate F. 10’8″ got rounded to 325 centimeters which got rounded to 3.3. meters which gets passed around as 3300 mm. Plausible? Or they are all precisely 3287.7533 mm wide which gets rounded to 3300? Unless it’s warm when they get measured and they are 3287.8224. If it’s warm and they are in the sun they are 3288.1205. Taken without anyone in the car because if one person stands between the thresholds the floor flexes infinitesimally and the measurement will be .003987 mm off.

    North American cars have a nominal floor height of 51 inches. When they are new. After 40 years the wheels have been trued a few times, the springs have sagged and other parts have worn. Closer to 48 inches.

    How high is the platform in Penn Station Newark at 4 in the morning on the coldest day of the year? How high is it at 4 in the afternoon on the hottest day of the year after it’s been basking in the sun for a few hours? Or at Sendai?

    How high is the floor when there are standees in the car? How high is it when the car is empty? How much does the gap change as passengers get up from their seats and move into the aisle?

    They are all more or less the same and putting slightly bigger wheels with slightly taller springs isn’t going to change much of the design. Or slightly smaller wheels with slightly shorter springs.

    joe Reply:

    @Joe: and absolutely no reason to expect _compatibility_.

    The xpressweest site illustrates compatibility by showing connection between systems.

    If not for Paul Dyson, watch dog, the xpresswest system would not be compatible with HSR and their vision unfulfilled billions lost. Their business model and ridership suffer without him.

    What would we do with out him and that rooster that crows every morning and rises the sun.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    For what it’s worth, SkyTrain rolling stock is approximately the same height relative to the platform (about 2 cm above it) regardless of age.

    jimsf Reply:

    The problem with your idealism is that it is disconnected from the reality that a project serving la, palmdale and vegas first would never pass at the ballot box because the central and northern parts of the state – would vote against it.

    The financial and political reality is that starting in the middle with the high speed core and building north and south segment by segment to connect with existing urban corridors is the only plan that will succeed. there is no way around that. Wishing otherwise is futile.

    VBobier Reply:

    Agreed on all points Jimsf…

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Good thinking Jim. Put it where no one will ride it and you don’t annoy anyone.
    The ballot had little to say about where the construction would begin. Indeed, those that voted for voted for a complete system with little thought to the intermediate stages required. They voted to be at the top of the mountain, not for the effort required to climb it. If you want it to succeed as a business you’d better start building with a segment that could have some meaningful number of fare paying passengers, not the fantasy of the CHSRA business plan.

    VBobier Reply:

    Problem is Paul, the ballot would have never passed without HSR going through the cities in the CV, it a done deal, You can’t stop that and no lawsuit will either…

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    I didn’t say it shouldn’t go through the CV cities, indeed I spoke for HSR in Fresno in 1981! I did say that is not the place to start construction. And since construction hasn’t started I might still be right.

    synonymouse Reply:

    Pleasant pipedream of Team Tehachapi miraculously re-setting the project.

    No, spend whatever funds there are before they take them away. Standard bureaucratic procedure.

    Think of the CHSRA as the DMV and DogLegRail as their long-lost computer on steel wheels. Just multiply $1bil by, oh say, 68 or so.

    joe Reply:

    Again, your idealism doesn’t reconcile the funding constraints put on the HSR project by ARRA funding, the schedule or Proposition 1a.

    You demand adherence to your ideals regardless other constraints put on the project.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Joe: Damn right I demand adherence to my ideals, and damn right I demand value for my dollar. Constraints that have been imposed can be torn away when found wanting. Think stamp taxes and the like. Or will George III come through for you?

    Ted Judah Reply:

    I did say that is not the place to start construction. And since construction hasn’t started I might still be right.

    Actually, the existence of PRIIA (Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008) all but requires the start of HSR service in the Central Valley:

    PRIIA’s goal of making states pay more for Amtrak service that is not transcontinental or along the Northeastern Corridor means that a route like the San Joaquins is no longer viable.

    The only way to continue service in the San Joaquin Valley, therefore, is to overlay the service with one that can generate more revenue: e.g. SF to LA. And the fact is that transformation under PRIIA is going to happen much faster than CBOSS or Measure R will allow.

    Prop 1A and federal funds have to concentrate on building the system spine, the part of the route that will not generate enough revenue on it’s own: Merced to Palmdale. If you build the spine first, the local authorities in the Bay Area and Southern California will find the money to connect to it. If you leave it to local government to push from the bookends out, it will never happen because that service will compete with existing commuter routes that are politically tied to growth patterns.

    Finally, the technically simplest segment will be between Fresno and Bakersfield. Investing there first adds the dividend of making discoveries about the technology and system that will be easier to upgrade than sections that require extensive tunneling or grade separations.

    Nathanael Reply:

    It’s worth pointing out again that Bakersfield to Palmdale was nowhere near ready for construction; still isn’t in fact. Accordingly, there was no way that ARRA funding could be used for it. However, Bakersfield to Fresno was basiclaly ready. Second-best choice.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Ted J: San Joaquins “no longer viable”. Nonsense. Either they never were viable or they still are. The San Joaquins are state supported, and the level of state support will have to increase under PRIIA, but CA will find the money. The amount has not yet been finalized. Meanwhile farebox recovery continues to improve. Of course there is the inherent risk that Amtrak will cook the books and find additional costs to soak up the new revenues but given a level playing field and a state rail administration ready to push back the San Joaquins will survive, HSR or no.

    joe Reply:

    Joe: Damn right I demand adherence to my ideals, and damn right I demand value for my dollar. Constraints that have been imposed can be torn away when found wanting. Think stamp taxes and the like. Or will George III come through for you?

    No, not value.
    You demand to be in charge Paul – this is all about complaining about what happens when thing don’t happen your way.

    Jim’s most excellent comment on why we are where we are.
    Study it.
    http://www.cahsrblog.com/2013/01/ray-lahood-urges-america-to-catch-up-on-high-speed-rail/#comment-175059

    Let’s review the bidding.

    California offered four possible segments: LA-Anaheim, SF-SJ and the two CV segments. The Feds rejected the first two. They didn’t have to say why, but one can guess: LA-Anaheim isn’t central to LA-SF, it’s sort of an ornamental stub; SF-SJ (1) isn’t part of an existing intercity route, it’s a commuter route and ARRA was explicit that the HSIPR money was for intercity not commuter rail (2) even from Washington it was clear that the Peninsula was, still is, NIMBY central: it still doesn’t have a Tier 1, let alone being close to breaking ground. So the CV was the only acceptable choice. California didn’t offer LA-Bakersfield or the Valley to Bakersfield or even Palmdale to Bakersfield. Again, they didn’t have to say why, but it’s even easier to guess. When the segments were offered, the cost estimates for Palmdale-Bakersfield were … unreliable. Between the ’09 Business Plan and the ’12 Business Plan, they more than doubled. It was explained (in a different document, natch) that the ’09 plan had assumed the Tehachapis could be crossed more or less at grade, with only a short length of tunnel and almost no viaduct. This being an unrealistic assumption, the estimates had to be increased. I suspect this was known when California chose its four segments to bid.

    But it’s more than that. At this point, we can wish that Palmdale-Bakersfield was being built, so that trains could run between NorCal and SoCal. We can envisage San Joaquins running under diesels from Oakland and Sacramento to Bakersfield, picking up an electric locomotive at Truxton Ave., running under that to Palmdale (the diesel helping on the upgrade and being shut off before the train enters the tunnel), dropping the electric locomotive at Palmdale and running along the Metrolink tracks under diesel into LAUS, seven and a half to eight hours LA-Oakland, six and a half to seven, LA-Sacramento, single seat ride. But back when Prop 1A was being formulated and debated, noone thought in these terms. California HSR was going to be separate from the existing rail system, it was going to be 350 km/h from the start, two and a half hour trip, FRA regulations weren’t to be controlling: Fly California. Had it been conceived in an incremental style, gradually adding to the existing rail system, upgrading first to 110 mph, then to 125 mph, then to 150 mph, then to …, it’s likely that Prop 1A would never have passed.

    Project managers are constrained by path dependence. We’re here because we’re here because we’re here because ….

    LaHood did have an opportunity to see that the project was unraveling and to pull the money. Between when it became clear that ground would not be broken by September ’12 and when Brown created his compromise to get the matching funds appropriated, LaHood could have declared that the delays meant that California wouldn’t be able to satisfy the ARRA timeline and redistributed the funds to, say, Michigan, North Carolina and Amtrak for the Portal Bridge. Had he done so, that probably would have killed all prospect of California HSR. So he didn’t. What he never had the opportunity to do was redirect the funds within California. This was what they bid. Nor, even had he the opportunity, would the funds be adequate for the needs elsewhere. Palmdale-Bakersfield would cost more than is currently to be spent on the ICS, more even than would be available if California maximally matched the federal funds.

    Jonathan Reply:

    Joe: Damn right I demand adherence to my ideals, and damn right I demand value for my dollar. Constraints that have been imposed can be torn away when found wanting. Think stamp taxes and the like. Or will George III come through for you?

    So, Paul, you’re going to start a revolution — start shooting government staff and troops — because you don’t like the politics which yielded ARRA funding? That’s totally kooky, and loses any credibility you might have had.

    Jonathan Reply:

    Nathaniel writes, in response to Paul Dyson:

    t’s worth pointing out again that Bakersfield to Palmdale was nowhere near ready for construction; still isn’t in fact. Accordingly, there was no way that ARRA funding could be used for it. However, Bakersfield to Fresno was basiclaly ready. Second-best choice.

    I have a simple theory — a model with predictive and explanatory power — about how Paul Dyson responds to rail infrastructure spending. If it benefits, him, personally (or at least his local community), he’s for it. Otherwise, he’s against it, as being the “wrong priority”. That model continues to pretty well, so far.

    Paul also seems to state that HSR will have no effect at all on ridership on the San Joaquins.
    That seems really bizarre.

    rtaylor352 Reply:

    Look where they started the interstate highway system. Kansas and Missouri. Not exactly population central, but it catalyzed the national system.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    This canard again? That was the gap in the expressway or near-expressway network in the eastern half of the US. Kansas and Oklahoma had turnpikes, Illinois had already upgraded Route 66 to a four-lane divided highway, Chicago-East Coast was a series of state-built turnpikes and toll roads.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Well… they didn’t start the Penna. Turnpike in Philadelphia or Pittsburgh….

    Ryan Reply:

    What do you mean “canard again”? In 1954 Eisenhower pushed for funding for a standardized national highway system. The hodgepodge of state networks just weren’t cutting it to quickly get the military across the country. He got the $25 billion funding authorized June 29, 1956. Missouri was awarded the first contract to upgrade US 40 to what would be called I-70 six weeks later, in St. Charles County. Kansas had started improving US 40 to what would become I-70 already, west of Topeka, and Federal funds came in to finish the project.

    All these initial funds focused on improving infrastructure far from the largest cities of NYC, Chicago, LA, and Philadelphia.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    You could drive from Chicago to Boston on Interstate grade highways by 1960.

    From Wikipedia on what is now I-90.

    Massachusetts

    Mass. Pike:
    Construction began in 1955, and the whole four-lane road from Route 102 at the state line to Route 128 in Weston opened on May 15, 1957. The Berkshire Thruway opened on May 26, 1959, connecting the west end to the New York State Thruway mainline south of Albany.

    New York
    NY Thruway:

    The first section of the Thruway, between Utica and Rochester, opened on June 24, 1954. Other sections of the 426-mile (686 km) mainline between Buffalo and the Bronx were completed and opened throughout 1954 and 1955. The last segment, from Yonkers south to the Bronx, was completed on August 31, 1956.

    Pennsylvania
    Untolled in Pennsylvania:

    In Pennsylvania, I-90, called the “AMVETS Memorial Highway” (also signed as such in New York state), is a non-tolled section that extends from the Ohio state line through to New York state going through Erie, Pennsylvania. Although, this was supposed to be the “Erie Extension” of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, it was however completed in 1958 with funding from the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission.

    Ohio

    From the section about Pennsylvania in the article on I-90: Because Ohio had built their portion of the highway prior to the opening of this section, cars were dumped at an exit in Petersburg, Ohio.

    From the article on Deadman’s curve in Cleveland:
    Dead Man’s Curve was constructed as part of the Innerbelt project in 1959.

    Ohio Turnpike:
    On December 1, 1954, the first 22-mile stretch (the portion lying east of SR 18) opened near the present-day exit 218 for I-76 and I-80. Several motorists attended a dedication ceremony, with over 1,000 people joining a caravan, following a snow plow and a patrol cruiser, to become the first to drive the turnpike. The remaining section from exit 218 west to Indiana opened on October 1, 1955. A connecting ramp near the Indiana state line closed on August 16, 1956, the day before the Indiana Toll Road was opened; this ramp had been used to allow traffic access to US 20 to cross into Indiana.

    Indiana

    Indiana Toll Road:
    It opened in stages, east to west, between August and November 1956. The formal dedication ceremony was held on September 17, 1956.

    Illinois

    …The Chicago Skyway opened to traffic on April 16, 1958.

    The same thing can be done with Chicago to Philadelphia. Get to Philadelphia and it’s there’s an alternate route to New York. And easy access to Baltimore and Washington DC. By 1960 you could drive from Chicago to most places on the East Coast on Interstate or near Interstate grade highways.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    The Pennsylvania Turnpike connected to good roads near Harrisburg and Pittsburgh from the start. Just like I-70 connected to a very good road at the Illinois side and an Interstate-grade expressway on the Kansas side.

    synonymouse Reply:

    Sometimes brave new worlds have to happen. American is a bandwagon country and dumb ideas can take on a manifest destiny of their own.

    Politicians are particularly prone to the lemming effect and mob psychology. Sometimes the hoi polloi have to find out how patently stupid an idea is(like DoglegRail)by seeing it thru to failure. See Prohibition.

    When it comes to anything PB the naysayers have history on their side.

    Hey maybe DesertedXprss can pack their trains with hookers, like the ones French railways ran for the German officers during the Occupation. Now that’s Vegas’ depths of debauchery.

    swing hanger Reply:

    Hmm, the DesertSexpress- good idea, likely more profitable than a dining car.

    synonymouse Reply:

    Put Harry Reid and Willie Brown on it right away. They have a lot of experience in that line of work.

    Matthew B. Reply:

    Synonymouse’s non sequitur jumps straight into Godwin’s law, but with prostitutes and doglegs. Just sit back and watch the crazy :-)

    joe Reply:

    It’s all about Yucca Mountain. The US lacks a nuclear disposal site and it’s all NVs fault.
    http://www.reid.senate.gov/issues/yucca.cfm

    I am proud that after more than two decades of fighting the proposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump, the project has finally been terminated.
    ….In 1982, the United States Congress passed the Nuclear Waste Policy Act instructing the DOE to identify possible sites to build and operate an underground disposal facility for the nation’s spent nuclear fuel. In 1984, the DOE chose ten sites to study as potential locations, but after only three years, the DOE was instructed to only study Yucca Mountain. In 2002, President Bush’s decision that Yucca Mountain was suitable for nuclear waste was recklessly approved.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    Las Vegas is a resource unsustainable city and whose existence is centered around the celebration and encouragement of debauchery. Upon what grounds should we promote its survival? To top it off, the water that they use drains Lake Mead and results in lesser hydroelectric electricity, with a consequent raising of pollution from fossil fuel sources which must step in instead; this is exacerbated by water conservation goals which are quite light and not accompanied by steep rate increases (a goal of 199 gallons per capita per day by 2035).

    Ryan Reply:

    While I concur that Las Vegas definitely grew too big and too fast for a desert region, there are some encouraging signs for Lake Mead. The average lake elevation for 2013 is 1,121 feet, the same as 2012 average and higher than the 2010 figure of 1091 ft, the lowest the lake had ever been since the lake filled up in 1941.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Well some people enjoy being debauched. And then get rebauched and doing it all over again. The ones in the Midwest and Northeast, during the winter, appreciate doing it someplace where it’s warm. You can sit at home and read your copy of Cotton Mather’s greatest hits. By the light of a hand cranked LED. In the chill. You’d probably be much happier in Las Vegas, there are people who will do punishment scenes at very reasonable hourly rates.

    jimsf Reply:

    You aren’t going to get very far by trying to take away peoples access to debauchery.
    Further, Vegas is a city that easily reinvents itself. There is no cry to preserve things. Its easily changeable. There’s nothing to keep it from going green. In fact, homeowners and the tourism industry have a financial interest in going green. Unlimited solar is available for electricity. There is no agriculture sucking up water, and home usage is easy to modify with conservation. The hotels are already learning the water conservation helps there bottom line by cutting costs, and by allowing them to market themselves as green.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    I’m not taking away their access, I’m simply not spending public funds on expanding it.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    People in the other 49 states pay Federal taxes too.

    VBobier Reply:

    Only members of Congress get a say in who or what gets tax money, no buts either.

    Nathanael Reply:

    “Why not just let Nevada wither away and die anyhow?”

    2 Senators.

  6. joe
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 10:54
    #6

    You misspelled Los Angeles

    Las Vegas is a resource unsustainable city and whose existence is centered around the celebration and encouragement of debauchery.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    I’m afraid you’ll need to take Remedial Witticisms, ENG 103.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Perhaps he meant San Francisco?

  7. Paul Druce
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 10:54
    #7

    Worth pointing out: The loan payments alone would amount to 316.5 million dollars a year. They’d need to be more successful than Acela just to break even on the financial costs, much less the costs of actually running it, and quite frankly, I’m not seeing it.

    Ryan Reply:

    They plan on the average round trip ticket costing $90. If your figure is correct, that means they need to sell 3.5 million round trip tickets to make their loan payments.

    Las Vegas has around 39-40 million visitors a year. Of those, 25-26% come from Southern CA.

    So, 10 million tourists a year, and they need to cater to a third of them to make their loan payment.

    While it’s not a slam dunk investment, I also wouldn’t say it’s doom and gloom and a sure boondoggle either.

    Ryan Reply:

    I’m sure they can get a third of the visitors to LV from So Cal. $90 is cheaper than a round trip air ticket, and the round trip in a car would cost about $200 in wear/tear on a car. Plus, can you imagine the feeling drivers would have on long boring I-15 when they see a HSR train fly by them at 3 times the speed?

    joe Reply:

    Jimsf points out xpresswest can run tiered services such as quite coach for business and premium class with amenities as well as low cost tickets. The vacation can start once you board the train.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    Keep in mind that that’s only the cost of the loan payment, it doesn’t include the costs of actually running the trains or other expenses.

    Ryan Reply:

    Once they start full one seat LA – LV service, I’m sure they’ll turn a profit even after the loan payment. And in 30 years, they’ll be one lucrative company.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    You base this on what? The nice warm feeling you get when you contemplate high speed rail service? Or actually looking at their ridership and revenue forecasts?

    Ryan Reply:

    What exactly is their ridership forecast? The only mentions of it I see are from Wendell Cox and Reason Foundation, which are hardly objective sources. No where do I see any XpressWest produced material saying they expect to have more passengers than Acela.

    The best data I can see today is, if XpressWest can get 1/3 of the SoCal tourists to choose them over flying or driving, they’ll make their loan payment. I also highly suspect XpressWest will market to foreign tourists as well, in a SoCal / Las Vegas combo vacation. Las Vegas gets almost 5 Million foreign tourists a year.

    Peter Reply:

    They submitted an updated ridership report to the FRA either in 2011 or 2012 (I forget when) as part of their RRIF application. I haven’t found it, but I haven’t looked very much for it, either.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    They do expect more passengers than Acela; such expectation is reasonable because anyone who compares ridership to Acela rather than Acela+Regional is a hack.

    There used to be a library on the FRA’s site, including ridership and revenue projections depending on scenario (ticket cost, speed, frequency) and year, and market analysis. Unfortunately, the links got broken in a web redesign. Progress!

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    The number I see bandied about for NEC ridership is 100,000,000 a year. But that’s 89 million tickets being used on non Amtrak trains.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    This should be it, page 33 for annual EMU trips

    Basically they expect to take a decade from start of operation before ridership would meet the demand figures for simply paying the financial costs at $55 per rider (not accounting for inflation).

    jimsf Reply:

    55 per rider is a ridiculously low fare. I I want to pop over to lax today and go to vegas for the weekend, the round trip fare ranges from a low of 325 rt to a high of 710rt for coach travel.

    and a first class round trip ticket runs between $629 and $1229

    Im sure hsr could offer a first class ticket for half that with no problem.

    Now if I wanted to drive, and I get decent mileage ( 30mpg) it would cost me about 85 in gas, excluding parking, wear and tear, discomfort, traiffic etc)

    A minimum fare should be 99 each way for advanced purchase based on rt.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    It’s about 30 cents a passenger mile and quite frankly, appropriate given that you have to go to Bumfuck, CA in order to catch the train first. $99 would be appropriate for an LAUS fare, but nobody is going to pay $200 round trip for the privilege of driving a couple hours to catch a train.

    Ryan Reply:

    It’s actually 62.4 cents per mile, according to the AAA.

    Since Victorville to LV is 180 miles, that’s $224 per round trip.
    Downtown LA to LV is 260 miles, that’s $324 per round trip.

    http://www.pimall.com/nais/nl/n.costpermile.html

    Paul Druce Reply:

    1. The AAA methodology is crap.
    2. I was referring to the $55 fare.

    jimsf Reply:

    Paul you missed my point, I was comparing the future trip from LA to vegas, not the interim VRV location. And if people are paying 325 round trip to fly, and have to drive from “somewhere” in the la basin out to LAX – no picnic, then yes they will pay 198 rt fro the train.

    Ryan Reply:

    When the line is complete, Victorville will cater to Inland Empire and San Diego. Palmdale will cater to the central coast, San Joaquin, and San Fernando Valleys. Union Station will cater to LA and OC.

    You can’t know the system by harping about Victorville. When the Interstate Highway system got started, the first segments were in Kansas and Missouri. Would it have been rational for someone in NYC to howl about wasted money because hardly anyone lived there?

    Paul Druce Reply:

    And you missed the point that $55 is the Victorville fare, it’s not what they would be charging from LAUS. The average one-way fare paid on the LAX-LAS route is $106 incidentally.

    jimsf Reply:

    You don’t have any idea what the fare is. The system hasn’t even been built yet.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    It’s part of the ridership forecast.

    jimsf Reply:

    the ridership forecast is meaningless. The fact is people are already paying over a hundred bucks one way on amtrak from the valley to vegas on a slow train with a 6 hour bus ride. so for xwest to quote a fare of 55 dollars is ridiculous. The fare will be based on what the market will bear and it will be competitive with driving and flying and flexible based on the class of service and amenities. They will use fare buckets/revenue management to adjust pricing to match real time demand.
    55 dollars was pulled out of someone’s ass and not based in reality so disregard it.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    There is no Amtrak train to Vegas and the bus from LAUS is $55 via Greyhound (Amtrak interline ticket) or $16-20 with Megabus. It’s in the $20s from Bakersfield on interlined Greyhound.

    Oh, and for the record, XpressWest claims an even lower “average round trip fare of $89″ on their website. But I suppose they don’t know what the fare will be either.

    Ryan Reply:

    Thanks, I have something for my flight now. I wish I could get to Fresno by HSR instead of puddle jumper.

    rtaylor352 Reply:

    Read it page to page, no where do they say they expect to have more ridership than acela. And on table 15, the consultants estimate reaching a revenue of $500 million a year in the 4th year of service.

    Peter Reply:

    To have more passengers than Acela they would only need to average just over 9000 passengers a day.

    Jonathan Reply:

    Or, — given the peak-to-average comments above — they’d have to average about 20,000 passengers on a Friday.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    I believe they forecast 33,000 on Friday.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    “Once they start a full one seat service from LA”… The loan only covers construction from V’ville to LV. There will be other capital costs to service for V’ville to Palmdale and some kind of trackage rights fee from LAUS to Palmdale. Nothing is free.

    Nathanael Reply:

    Actually, it seems very likely that LA Metro will pay for the construction from Victorville to Palmdale, wrapping it up in the “High Desert Corridor”. Sometimes things are free to someone.

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Doesn’t mean they won’t charge a private operator to use it. Amtrak charges private freight companies to use the NEC, for example.

    joe Reply:

    Just pretend xpresswest’s investment is a nuclear power plant with large, up front capital costs. I know you can grok that business model.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    What makes you think I endorse every single nuclear power project one comes up with?

    joe Reply:

    Every nuclear power plant has large, upfront capital costs and every one one of them takes a long time to recover the investment.

    Every. Single. One.

    So you grok the business model – large up front capital costs and long time payback.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    I don’t think you quite comprehend my objection here. My objection is that it simply will not make enough money to pay for both its operations and the financial costs incurred in its construction. It has nothing to do with a long ROI.

    For the record however, production cost at Diablo Canyon is $.0157/kWh or $15.7 per megawatt-hour. This would imply that the annual operating cost of 1000MWe nuclear reactor at 90% capacity factor is 123.8 million per year; combining the financial costs of the proposed XpressWest loan suggests that it would break even so long as it managed to sell power at an average cost of $44 per megawatt, a rather reasonable figure.

    joe Reply:

    I recall objections over Las Vegas being both non-sustainable and a city of debauchery. maybe that was just a distraction.

    Diablo Canyon – when did construction start? I maybe misreading wikipedia but construction started in 1968 and it lists 1985 as the commission date. 17 years.

    That is a Large capital expenditure and long term payback.

    In 17 years the xpresswest will be connected to both the CV segment and LA. I bet they don’t have to retrofit the facility or decommission the tracks.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    I recall objections over Las Vegas being both non-sustainable and a city of debauchery. maybe that was just a distraction.

    Those are my non-financial reasons for being opposed to it. The financial one, which you focused on with your comments, was that it would not make sufficient money as to pay for its financial costs, not your continued misrepresentation that I object to a long ROI.

    And yes, you are misreading Wikipedia; construction started in 1968 and was finished in 1973 at which point an additional fault line was discovered and additional retrofitting done. For comparison, SONGS began construction in 1964 and was commissioned in 1968.

    Oh, and PG&E charges $0.00050 per kWh for decommissioning costs; it’ll all be taken care of by the time the plant needs to be shut down.

    joe Reply:

    JimSF clearly shows the system could cover costs. It will obviously connect to the CV segment as well as service LA.

    Your example, Diablo Canyon, was not generating electricity in 1973, not producing cash until 1985 – right? I think you dodged that 17 year delay. It was, after 1973, still draining the pocketbooks of the utility. Homer Simpson held the blueprints backwards too.

    Just as PG&E made that claim ratepayers were paying for gas line maintenance well into the Daley City explosion and subsequent realization – uh no we aren’t. So I think that’s a line of bunk. At least until we see a decommissioned pawer plant disposed of in a TBD site.

    Nathanael Reply:

    Paul: no utility in the country has actually managed to save up the full decommissioning costs for a nuclear reactor, as we discover repeatedly when the time comes to decomission them.

    Paul Druce Reply:

    Feel free to go yell at CPUC and tell them that they’re lying.

    http://www.dra.ca.gov/NDTrustFunds.aspx

    joe Reply:

    Just like CA rate payers have been fully paying for the maintenance of PG&E’s gas-lines until Daley City blew up.

    Disposal site Yucca is closed. We haven’t actually built a disposal site. The decommission estimates are backed the US government – 100% and that means the taxpayer is on the hook. Costs are estimated in good faith but no facility has been full decommissioned the actual costs are TBD when we actually dispose a reactor.

    John Nachtigall Reply:

    1/3 is not enough. That is just the loan payment. You also have operating costs and since it is a private project a concept called profit. It is never going to pay back that lan

    John Nachtigall Reply:

    Loan

    joe Reply:

    Not in 35 years? while connected to the CA system and while owning the only HSR track from CA to the SW and parts east?

    Ryan Reply:

    I’m not going to compare XpressWest to Acela either. Acela is on a pretty constrained route, they have to share with a multitude of other northeast trains, as well as drawbridges, etc. They only have 16 trips a day. XpressWest says they could have departures every 12-20 minutes.

    jimsf Reply:

    From what Im looking at back of napkin numbers are something like this from vegas fun facts…

    Annual visitors to vegas: 37,000,000
    percentage from socal: 25 Percent. or 9,250,000

    If the train can capture say 25 percent of those travelers, some from air, some from cars, and some who might otherwise not go at all.. you’d get 2,300,00 pax per year or a daily average of
    around 6000 pax per day.

    Vegas is a 24 hour town and people are constantly arriving and leaving. ( the time of day you go broke isn’t necessarily between 9am and 5 pm) so if xwest ran one train per hour on a 24 hour clcok face sked, you average

    263 people per train. a reasonable expectation.

    Further, say they needed to make 500,000,000 a year that works out to an average round trip fare of $217 per person. also very reasonable.

    Then you consider that some people will pay cheaper special fares and other people will pay premium first class fares, to get that average of $217

    and its completely do able.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    Actually, LA-to-Vegas travel is very peaky: a huge proportion of people leave on Friday in the afternoon and come back on Sunday. The peak to base ratio is higher than the 2:1 implicitly assumed on schedules like Clem and Richard’s, though not as high as on some TGV city pairs.

    jimsf Reply:

    yes more on weekends less on weekdays. im just using an average number to show that its reasonable

    Ryan Reply:

    Im going to tweak a few of the numbers to show they could have more passengers that that.

    Las Vegas has 39.7 million annual visitors.
    ( http://www.lvcva.com/includes/content/images/media/docs/ES-YTD20128.pdf)

    They have 25-26% of their visitors from So Cal, so lets say 10.1 million.

    Once they get the line complete to Union Station, it’s not out of line to say 1/3 of SoCal visitors, so 3,300,000 pax per year or a daily average of around 9,000.

    Alon is right in that LV has skewed tourist arrival/departure times, but I’d assume XpressWest accounts for that with trains going every 12 minutes on Fridays from 1pm to 11pm.

    Average 2 trains an hour throughout the week and it’s 187 passengers per train.

    They could get their 500 Million with an average of $150 r/t tickets.

    And none of this takes into account the potential to get tourists to LV from other states or countries to ride the HSR to LA and incorporate that into their vacation. How about LV and Disneyland, our friends from the East coast?

    They key is to get to downtown LA as soon as possible. Victorville just doesn’t excite anyone.

    jimsf Reply:

    and you also have to add the 1,5million clark county residents, many of whom have ties to california, who, would make up induced trips, that they would otherwise not make, since with hsr it would be so much easier and more convenient, and considering that youre getting not just union station, but the atelope valley, the san fernando valley and the san joquin valley.

    Nathanael Reply:

    Yeah. Assuming (as always) that the line is connected to LA, there’s another result: it’ll start diverting passengers to land at Las Vegas Airport in order to go to LA.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Poeple in the Northeeast and Midwest go to Disneyworld. It’s why obscure regional airports will have service to the nearest hub, Orlando and Las Vegas.

  8. trentbridge
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 16:00
    #8

    And the two million residents of Clark County – updated this week – don’t count? Does the quoted 39 million “visitors” include returning Las Vegas residents – who went to California to escape the summer heat for a weekend? In Los Angeles, the 42000 people who use Metrolink every weekday (Dec 12) don’t get counted as “visitors”.

  9. J Baloun
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 16:10
    #9

    Off Topic:

    Andrew’s blog linked to an interesting chart on mortality causes over the past century. Rail might be lumped into transportation of which automobiles are the major contributor. Air Crashes only accounts for 0.1M. An order of magnitude smaller than a round-off error on this chart.

    If I recall High Speed Rail has an amazing safety record.

    http://tinyurl.com/b9k848b

    For rough comparison, Wiki notes 1,428 died form railway accidents in the EU in 2009.

    http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/statistics_explained/index.php/Transport_accident_statistics

  10. Reality Check
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 18:03
    #10

    New high-speed train to Barcelona
    The new TGV rail link fast-tracks Robin McKie along a very civilised route from London to Barcelona via Paris, a theme he continues with a stay on a sailing boat in Sitges

    […] journey by train has a contemplative appeal that no other form of transport can offer. Security mayhem is minimal, and there is generally a lot more comfort in a rail carriage than in a car. You can stare out of a window, read or simply contemplate the good things in life — a prospect that has just been spectacularly enhanced with last month’s launch of the new Paris-Barcelona TGV link. This has cut the journey time from London to 10 hours, and this will be cut by another hour in May. You can leave Paris in the early afternoon and reach the Catalan capital by evening, making it possible to breakfast in London, lunch in Paris and dine in Barcelona in a day.

    […]

    From May (or 28 April according to a hunch from train guru the Man in Seat 61), the Paris TGV will run directly into Sants station in the heart of Barcelona in just under 6½ hours (or nine hours from London, excluding the change of train and station in Paris).

  11. Reality Check
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 18:53
    #11

    From Slate.com: My Train Fantasy
    Where’s our high-speed rail?

    “High-speed rail supporter Alfred Twu has gotten a lot of attention for having boldly drawn a map of where he thinks high-speed trains should go,” wrote Randal O’Toole of the libertarian Cato Institute. “Twu’s map is even more absurd than Obama’s plan,” he wrote, describing the map, and high-speed rail in general, as a “ridiculous fantasy.”

    O’Toole’s reaction demonstrated one of the principal reasons why American high-speed rail has been mostly stymied: One person’s beautiful vision of the future is another’s terrifying government boondoggle.

    […]

    So before true high-speed rail can actually be broached in the Northeast — never mind a transcontinental dream line between Los Angeles and New York — critical basic infrastructure improvements need to be made to Amtrak’s overstretched system. Acquiring funding for these relatively straightforward projects is a struggle, and because the issue has become so politicized, Barkan worries that maps like Twu’s risk being counterproductive.

    “I think it has potentially negative consequences because, on the one hand it might cause people to think that it makes sense to build high speed rail over a thousand miles of desert,” he said. “It also gives ammunition to the critics of high speed rail that would then cause them to say that the high speed rail advocates are proposing to spend billions in taxpayer money where it doesn’t make sense to build it.”

    […]

    Corridors that couldn’t attract sufficient numbers of riders would likely detract from the potential economic and environmental benefits gained from the more sensible routes. “If newly built high-speed rail services do not attract projected ridership over time, they will not only fail to deliver their promised benefits but they may waste energy, resources, and require excessive operating subsidies,” the America 2050 report concluded.

    Experts who study light rail often mention a “sweet spot” of between 100 and 600 miles for high-speed rail corridor trips. Shorter than 100 miles, and a rider is more likely to want to take a conventional train, a car, or a bus. Longer than 600 miles and a rider is better off flying.

    […]

    Barkan’s bewilderment at the popularity of Twu’s map was echoed by his colleague, Ruppert Jr., who wondered why I was even asking about Twu’s map when America 2050 and the Federal Railroad Administration had produced far more realistic ones. What I think the two engineers may have missed was the usefulness of Twu’s project as a marketing tool for proponents of high-speed rail. People look at China building the world’s longest high-speed rail line in a handful of years and wonder why America no longer seems capable of accomplishing similarly amazing prestige projects like we once did.

    Then again, maybe it’s not such a great marketing tool. As popular as Twu’s map was online, his White House petition fizzled. Perhaps he needs to think less grandiosely with his next map.

    swing hanger Reply:

    To use a baseball analogy, realistic passenger railway development is a connection between seemingly small but critical developments done consistently, much like how “small ball” baseball is played. Rank and file Americans, however, better understand and appreciate big dramatic events-a “swing for the fences” mentality.

    joe Reply:

    Cato Institute,

    If HSR were good then the market would have already built HSR. Since it has not, HSR is not good.

    Now –
    1000 Massachusetts Ave NW Washington, DC 20001

    Check how many feet Cato HQ is from a subsidized, Big Government rail station.

    D. P. Lubic Reply:

    What would Cato and the others say if we unrigged the game, leveled the playing field, held all transport to the same economic and safety standards?

    joe Reply:

    Depend son who is paying them.

    When you read commentary from a Conservative Think Tank, look up how closeHQ is to subsidized rail and transportation system in DC.

    There are lower rent places in the DC area that are very car (freedom) centric with ample parking but these guys are drawn to “socialism”.

    Nathanael Reply:

    Cato and “Reason” are paid by Big Oil, so they’d be EXTREMELY unhappy if we leveled the playing field.

  12. Gianny
    Mar 15th, 2013 at 20:14
    #12

    Who needs a car? Smartphones are driving teens’ social lives
    Fewer 16-year-olds are rushing to get their driver’s licenses today than 30 years ago as smartphones and computers keep adolescents connected to one another.

    http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-hy-autos-teen-driver-20130316-1,0,7422833.story

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    30 years ago 16 year olds could get driver’s licenses. Fewer states today where they can.

    joe Reply:

    30-40 years ago young and pre-adults could buy a running used car with savings from a summer job.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    You don’t need to own a car to get a driver’s license.

    VBobier Reply:

    No one doesn’t need to own a car to get a drivers license, I got one when I was 19 with My Dads car, a BIG 4 door ’71 Mercury Marquis down in San Pedro CA, I passed, got a 99 on My score.

    joe Reply:

    Exactly. You are right – it is harder to drive sub 18.
    Disinterest not limited to 16-18 year olds.
    “Nearly three-quarters of millennials, ages 18 to 34, would rather shop online than in stores, according to a December survey by Zipcar, the hourly car-rental company. Given the choice of losing their phone or computer or their car, 65% would go without their car.”

    D. P. Lubic Reply:

    I had to laugh at this following comment by an apparent Star Trek fan, Borgcube:

    “Pathetic. Government has won. It has convinced a growing number of Americans that you don’t need a car and can live in sardine cans, etc., all in the name of eco-sanity, while the real reason is to be able to charge and tax and fee in ever increasing amounts for ever decreasing levels of services.
    Less is more my rear. Lemmings all.”

    A commentor going by Pontiff revealed his age, suggesting a certain appropriateness to that name:

    “The requirements for a Driver’s License has also changed since the 1970s. Teens today no longer live the “car culture” craze of the 1950s, 60s and 70s. Today, how often do you see “high riders” and “low riders”? Weekend cruse nights along Whitier Blvd and Hollywood Blvd. no longer exist among today’s teens. The teen culture illustrated in the movie “American Graffitii” is very different today.

    “Think back when you were a teen back during the 1950s, 60s and 70s.”

    Jo Reply:

    Also, if you are not ready to drive yet, you can just get a California state ID card; children to seniors can get one.

  13. D. P. Lubic
    Mar 16th, 2013 at 16:43
    #13

    Off topic, but something that may be of interest, in particular to the idea of using historic stations on the Peninsula:

    The town of Fort Madison, Ia., had come to an agreement with Amtrak to renovate and reuse the old station. Problem was, the station, which had been vacated by Santa Fe back in the 1960s, was now something like 4 feet below track level, due to all the ballast that had been added in the preceding 40 or 45 years. What did they do? They just raised up the station, as seen in this time-lapse photo study:

    http://www.fortmadison-ia.com/mediacenter.aspx?VID=37

    BrianR Reply:

    that’s a nice time lapse video. I’ve always thought that in the grand scheme of things relocating or raising the height of an historic station has got to be one of the lower costs overall. I could see historic stations like those in Palo Alto, Menlo Park and others being lifted up and shifted back from the ROW if that’s what’s needed to accommodate a 4-track at-grade (or slightly above grade) ROW with high level platforms. Much larger buildings of historic value have been lifted up and relocated in the past. If people could see that the addition of HSR will have practically no impact on the historical character of a station other than the addition of catenary and 2 more tracks it may help make HSR more palatable to the community overall (not to assume most HSR opponents necessarily appreciate historic railway infrastructure in the first place).

    Nathanael Reply:

    Part of the elevation of the track was due to repeated attempts to get it out of the flood plain.

    So raising the building… probably helped with building flooding too!

  14. Keith Saggers
    Mar 16th, 2013 at 16:55
    #14

    Also Barstow has a historic station that XpressWest could use

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Where the shuttle bus to Victorville could pick people up?

    EJ Reply:

    Well the Hohokus express to Weehawken does the same length of trip in 0:50…

  15. Useless
    Mar 16th, 2013 at 17:31
    #15

    320-kph Hayabusa matches world speed record Hayabusa bullet trains began running Saturday at a new top speed of 320 kph on the Tohoku Shinkansen Line, equalling France’s TGV as the world’s fastest train in operation.

    http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2013/03/17/national/320-kph-hayabusa-matches-world-speed-record/

    nick Reply:

    yeah anti hsr critics in the uk scoff at the idea that the service speed of hs2 is planned to be 350 kph with a max design capability of 400 kph. they say that this is way faster then any trains in hs service but dont realise that we are only 30 kph away from that speed now and hs2 isnt due to be completed until 2024.

    of course we need it sooner then that as the existing main lines north of london will be more or less stuffed before then as the growth rate on the railways is currently double that which was used to make the case for hs2.

    Ted Judah Reply:

    In case you want to see what the Hayabusa (falcon) looks like: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kMFEr7GizcU

  16. D. P. Lubic
    Mar 16th, 2013 at 18:18
    #16

    Just for fun–more commentary on the generational shift. And some of it is funny, for some reason. . .

    http://pjmedia.com/lifestyle/2013/02/08/4-reasons-for-the-death-of-americas-car-culture/

    http://www.theatlanticcities.com/technology/2013/03/what-steamship-and-landline-can-tell-us-about-decline-private-car/4930/

    http://2paragraphs.com/2012/10/cars-and-america-innovation-to-preservation/

    A couple of these articles are older, and it’s interesting to see how things are starting to play out.

    http://www.examiner.com/article/higher-gas-prices-won-t-change-american-car-culture-says-transportation-expert

    https://www.commondreams.org/archive/2008/05/18/9036

    D. P. Lubic Reply:

    Just a couple of more:

    http://www.core77.com/blog/transportation/the_decline_of_the_car_part_1_italians_now_buying_more_bicycles_than_automobiles_23594.asp

    http://www.core77.com/blog/transportation/the_decline_of_the_car_part_2_these_youngsters_aint_interested_23596.asp

    And on the rail side:

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/11/travel/us-public-transportation-report

    From the following commentary, by Jerry Campbell, responding to a transit skeptic:

    “Well, I hope that you know that automobiles, gas and parking is heavily subsidized in our country (USA). When I drive my car on freeway, I am obliged to pay for the construction and maintenance of the freeway. However, most of the state DOTs get a huge chunk of money from property taxes and sales taxes for maintenance of roads. So, even people who do not take the freeways or do not cause that much damage to the roads pay for their maintenance.

    “And, of course, gas is heavily subsidized through federal taxes which are used to fight wars for oil (Iran 1954 and Iraq 1990s and 2000s).

    “Finally, parking is also subsidized for automobile owners. Somebody that goes to Walmart by bus also has to (indirectly) pay Walmart for the maintenance of their parking lot.

    “So, the playing field is already not flat. I guess if the public transit charges you a little bit of tax, you should not mind at all.”

    The knowledge is getting out. . .

    nick Reply:

    even in europe with very high taxes on cars and fuel these do not cover the actual costs to the entire eu economy of the motor car.

    see http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/dec/25/car-pollution-noise-accidents-eu

    those with an agenda for cars and against transit (lets just call them republicans !) tend to ignore this as do the pro nuclear anti wind and solar lobby as well.

    as far as generational change is concerned a major reason at the moment in the uk at least is that youth unemployment is high, insurance rates are astranomical and fiuel costs very high. so even though rail fares are extremely high at peak hours, car usage is falling and rail usage has been growing steadily even through the recession. season tickets may be high (£2500 from where i live 20 miles from london) but the cost of driving is even higher (fuel £1.40 per litre, congestion charge £10 per day in london and parking probably at least £20 per day !!!!!)

    overall passengers numbers are growing at a rate of 5-6% per year whereas the calculations done in 2009 to make the case for hs2 were 2.5%. so 4 years later actual usage since then has been increased by say 20% whereas the case for hs2 estimated 10%. so with an increase in population expected as well as record ridership we have to have hs2 a long long time before 2026 /2032 (birmingham / manchester)

    in a similar vein (as the junkie said) the domestic hs1 (london to kent) service only started in 2009 yet by 2012 was carrying over 8 million passengers per year. whilst the original estimates were very optimistic for hs1 as a whole at 21 million, the combined intl/domestic usage is now over 18 million per year. connecting hs1 to hs2 and with increased destinations to be on offer by eurostar and db, i can see the 21 million projection being met and passed.

    so hopefully by autumn / fall this year cashr will start construction and hs2 will be passed into law

    nick Reply:

    sorry it’s late here – what i meant by my cars vs rail and wind / solar vs nuclear was that at least here in the uk both the transportation and energy sectors will require and do require subsidy for the greater good of the economy, which is the point that robert always makes. So it is about time that the right wingers recognise this and stop pretending that fossil fuels aren’t subsidised/given tax breaks. and it is also time to stop pretending that our continued use of fossil fuels has huge economic costs to us all. even if you dont believe in climate change there are huge problems caused by pollution from burning fossil fuels. ask anyone living in beijing

    nick Reply:

    sorry again should have read that fossil fuel usage does cause economic and other problems and righht wingers have to stop denying this if this is possible !!! goodnight california

    D. P. Lubic Reply:

    Saw some stuff Nick might be interested in:

    http://www.jhindin.com/LJ/British_Auto.html

    http://www.kyu.edu.tw/93/epaperv7/107.pdf

    http://thecityfix.com/blog/a-decline-in-car-use-in-britain-the-result-of-policy-and-practicality/

    D. P. Lubic Reply:

    Came across a reference to this group and this song–Metric, performing “Hand$hake$,” with a line that runs “Buy this car to drive to work; drive to work to pay for this car.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQ3rvg7KQxQ

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    There was a sensational story on the NYC TV stations. Police called because there was a kid locked in a car etc. The 9 year old was left in the car while her mother was working at her second job. They lived in a neighborhood where you can live quite comfortably without a car. Got to her primary job on the bus. She needed a second job to afford a car. The main reason she needed a car was to get to the second job. . .

    nick Reply:

    thanks i will read them. i cant always be bothered to supply links maybe i am getting exasperated with anti hsr people in the uk who keep making the same deliberately incorrect statements over and over again. when you correct them they ask for proof and go silent when you supply the link. this happens so many times that i now just say “the info is available online – google it. ” this is perhaps a bit rude of me but it is hard to remain civil when people claim to have an informed opinion but then make it completely clear in their post that they haven’t read any of the available info. the art of logical and rational debate seems to be lost that is if it ever existed anyway !!!

    D. P. Lubic Reply:

    Comments on the network effect:

    http://reasonrail.blogspot.com/2013/02/increasing-train-ridership-and-revenue.html

    Of course there is the rest of the site:

    http://reasonrail.blogspot.com/

  17. Derek
    Mar 16th, 2013 at 21:38
    #17

    Senate budget should be death knell for bullet train
    By U-T San Diego Editorial Board

    In a just world, the California High-Speed Rail Authority would have shut down long ago, undone by the grossly deceptive campaign used in 2008 to convince voters to hand over $9.95 billion in bond seed money for a statewide system of bullet trains.

    Virtually all of the agency’s key campaign claims – about the project’s cost, ridership, interest of private investors, cost of tickets and more – proved false.

    Michael Reply:

    Yes, San Diego Values should guide the state:

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/15/justice/california-ex-mayor-gambling

    http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/09/business/09pension.html?_r=0

    VBobier Reply:

    Lots of corruption down in San Diego, that city should be quiet…

    EJ Reply:

    When you’re down to “shut, that’s why,” well then you’ve really lost the argument.

    joe Reply:

    Likewise when you’re down to “[in 2008] the Voters were grossly deceived” and willfully ignore Prop 30 passed in 2012 then you’ve really lost, argument over, HSR is happening.

    EJ Reply:

    Not sure what prop 30 has to do with anything…

    VBobier Reply:

    Agreed EJ, what does prop 30 have to do with HSR? Absolutely nothing.

    Brsk Reply:

    HSR opponents ran editorials to vote against Prop 30 because the state was “wasting” money on HSR. They also ran ads against pro-HSR assembly people and state senators attacking them for supporting HSR. The opponents tied the two together, saying a vote against Prop 30 would kill HSR. They lost big time.

    VBobier Reply:

    And that’s all Prop 30 had to do with HSR, opposition to HSR and to new taxes…

    Even if only temporary…

    Brsk Reply:

    HSR opponents ran editorials to vote against Prop 30 because the state was “wasting” money on HSR. They also ran ads against pro-HSR assembly people and state senators attacking them for supporting HSR. The opponents tied the two together, saying a vote against Prop 30 would force the state to kill HSR. They lost big time in Nov.

    joe Reply:

    Brsk remembers;

    HSR was tied to Prop 30 by opponents. They even had a field poll in July “proving” 1) HSR was unpopular and 2) Prop 30 was going down because of HSR.

    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/prop-370387-voters-percent.html

    The decline in trust has been exacerbated by the governor’s enthusiastic support for high-speed rail and Sacramento’s failure to deliver significant reform of the state’s public employee pension system.

    A July Field Poll reported that “a fifth of likely voters who support Brown’s proposal to raise taxes say they would be less likely to support it if the Legislature appropriates money for high-speed rail.” Only 52 percent to 55 percent of likely voters support Prop. 30. If just a small percentage defects, Prop. 30 will fail.

    BrianR Reply:

    on the other hand I can accept the mayor’s claim that her gambling habit was due to a brain tumor as 100% legitimate. I was listening to a radio program on NPR (either This American Life or Radiolab) describing a similar situation where a woman was being treated for a brain tumor however the drugs she was put on made her into a compulsive gambler who gambled away all the inheritance her parents left her and she even became bankrupt. A very sad story. The brain is a very mysterious organ.

    EJ Reply:

    And you wonder why there’s a 2/3 majority required for tax increases. It’s because so many LA & SF voters want to screw over the smaller metro areas.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    Don’t look too closely at where the tax money comes from and where it goes to. The people getting screwed over live in the big cities or it’s suburbs.

    BrianR Reply:

    “No one really knows where the name ‘San Diego’ comes from but legend has it that it is German for giant whale vagina”.

    (from the movie ‘Anchorman’ of course)

    VBobier Reply:

    Their argument is an old discredited one, go away. As that will not happen.

    Derek Reply:

    They’ve just run the same editorial again.

    VBobier Reply:

    Sounds like an old rerun, they must be runnin out of ideas… Bunch of empty headed Morons…

    synonymouse Reply:

    “As has become abundantly clear over the past four years, private investors will never offer a dime without revenue or ridership guarantees that are illegal under the terms of the 2008 initiative.”

    The problem with this hopelessly wimpy argument is that Jerry & Harry & Co. simply ignore these supposed legal caveats and strictures. And these editorialists are unwilling to escalate their discontent by attacking the patronage machine and its monopoly on power straight on.

    Of course the taxpayers are going to make whole any “investments” private interests would appear to make in DogLegRail. The private involvement will be totally phony, with no substantive risk or skin in the game. And private operation is not feasible as the house unions would immediately move to strike. Can you imagine a private operator for BART?

    Just as with the LA Times the SD newspaper wants to have it both ways. It is pandering to its reader demographic, which now probably amounts to a two-thirds opposition to PB-CHSRA, but still quietly and privately goes along with crony contracting, so lucrative for the paper’s wealthy and influential friends.

    So don’t expect any in-depth criticism of Team Tehachapi.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    That and they are afraid the black helicopters will come after them.

    synonymouse Reply:

    Drones are much more economical and discrete.

    adirondacker12800 Reply:

    http://www.draganfly.com/uav-helicopter/draganflyer-x6/

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