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Libarbarian
16-04-2009, 12:38 PM
Obama's America includes Vancouver! His vision for high-speed rail includes a line between Seattle and Vancouver. Too bad our government(s) keeps fumbling the ball....

http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/09/04/16/A-Vision-for-High-Speed-Rail/

IanO
16-04-2009, 12:55 PM
^too bad our country neither has the population nor the will to use 'the better way to travel'.

I love trains and would use them all the time if i could, but most would not.

DTrobotnik
16-04-2009, 12:55 PM
and the ottawa region. point? relevance?

Libarbarian
16-04-2009, 01:07 PM
I'd call the line in the east Montreal, but whatever, I like to include Edmonton as part of the happening Pacific NW, so cool things for Van are entirely relevant. There was brief window when high speed rail might have possible here too.

IanO
16-04-2009, 01:08 PM
^indeed

they call that 'window' 2100 ish

murman
16-04-2009, 01:22 PM
^indeed

they call that 'window' 2100 ish

Thanks, Ian.

As long as you keep channeling me, the less I have to put up with people griping when they get a slap across the face with my reality glove.

IanO
16-04-2009, 01:23 PM
^haha...

DTrobotnik
16-04-2009, 01:43 PM
no doubt, the population densities in those areas are massive compared to the Edmonton calgary corridor. we're not even on the map with this concept....literally.... but it's nice to window shop.

grish
16-04-2009, 01:53 PM
as I had pointed it out a number of times, population density isn't the only thing to look at.

for high speed rail, the viability depends on the following and then some:

1. average income, standard, and cost of living
2. technology
3. cost of power supply
4. nature of communities the rail connects (think how many former calgarians/ edmontonians live in the "other" city)
5. available land
6. geography and (this one is for medwards) topology (although in this case it is actually relevant)
7. possible synergies such as a unified tourism area or large scale events such as the olympics or world's fairs
8. climate (as in rail is more reliable than driving)
9. other transit options and costs

there are no doubt others. but the point is--and here is an actual slap of reality--tossing random dates and looking at a single number indicator is a very short sighted and unhelpful.

moahunter
16-04-2009, 02:00 PM
I think if HST takes off in the US as is suggested above, it is only going to become more economic as the infrastructure builds up. I agree with Grish that it is not a simple calculation of density / population, I am open to the idea, not convinced, but open to it. I have seen trains work very well even to link small towns in Europe, so I don't doubt they could work between Edmonton and Calgary, let alone out east where trains are already popular.

IanO
16-04-2009, 02:03 PM
as I had pointed it out a number of times, population density isn't the only thing to look at.

for high speed rail, the viability depends on the following and then some:

1. average income, standard, and cost of living
2. technology
3. cost of power supply
4. nature of communities the rail connects (think how many former calgarians/ edmontonians live in the "other" city)
5. available land
6. geography and (this one is for medwards) topology (although in this case it is actually relevant)
7. possible synergies such as a unified tourism area or large scale events such as the olympics or world's fairs
8. climate (as in rail is more reliable than driving)
9. other transit options and costs

there are no doubt others. but the point is--and here is an actual slap of reality--tossing random dates and looking at a single number indicator is a very short sighted and unhelpful.

obviously it has more variables but i honestly dont believe we have even 1/2 the population required to make that work.

GizmoForMayor
16-04-2009, 02:04 PM
^indeed

they call that 'window' 2100 ish

Thanks, Ian.

As long as you keep channeling me, the less I have to put up with people griping when they get a slap across the face with my reality glove.

Ah, the reality glove... would that be the same one used when the LRT system in Edmonton was first proposed and slammed as a future white elephant? I know which side you would have been on back then (or were, depending how old you are). I think we have talked this issue to death so I'm not inclined to start again. But if we must, do any of these arguments come with your reality glove?

- Lack of density? Then why does it work between cities like Stockholm and Goteburg, Sweden (roughly the same density as here)?
- It wouldn't be profitable? Show me a road that's profitable and I'll concede the point.
- Nobody will use it? That's what they said about the LRT a few decades ago
- It will kill the airport? Give me an example anywhere in the world where this has happened please and avoid talk about a Calgary conspiracy please, it gives me a headache.

perhaps I should put on my 'think outside the box' or 'live in the 21st century' glove and put it to good use

IanO
16-04-2009, 02:10 PM
^dont compare europe to NA... we simply do not think the same way period.

- roads are loss leaders, railways and airlines are not suppose to be.
- some will use it but enough? i doubt it.
- personally i think the airport thing is bunk, that i agree with

As for LRT, a high speed rail serving central edm..... essentially a better bus. Um yes.

GizmoForMayor
16-04-2009, 02:16 PM
Ian, I think we should compare ourselves to Europe a little more often. I agree that people don't always think the same way here, but then look at the inroads we have made to become a less car dependent culture. Yes, we still have a long way to go in this regard but we have to continue to build more alternatives to car travel before people are able to really show how they think (and how they can change their current lifestyles).
And why do you consider roads an infrastructure and railways not? They are both a service to the public and should be seen as such.

IanO
16-04-2009, 02:20 PM
^roads are public, unless this train is a crown corp....

GizmoForMayor
16-04-2009, 02:23 PM
and why shouldn't it be a crown corp? Otherwise there is always the P3 model, although I don't personally believe in it because I think it's more expensive in the long run

IanO
16-04-2009, 02:51 PM
^air canada round deux?

Green Grovenor
16-04-2009, 03:05 PM
Air Canada worked better as a crown corporation than it has as a private company.

IanO
16-04-2009, 03:10 PM
^did it now? How much public money was used to support it?

grish
16-04-2009, 03:11 PM
as I had pointed it out a number of times, population density isn't the only thing to look at.
.
.
.
there are no doubt others. but the point is--and here is an actual slap of reality--tossing random dates and looking at a single number indicator is a very short sighted and unhelpful.

obviously it has more variables but i honestly dont believe we have even 1/2 the population required to make that work.

obviously, Ian, you missed the point that a single variable is just not enough.

moahunter
16-04-2009, 03:12 PM
^^No-body probably knows re how much public money for Air Canada because it was a crown corporation based in Quebec. I'm sure it worked better though ... maybe... maybe not... (for all we know, some of the public money was probably routed back to our politicians through an Airbus salesman or similar).

A P3 would be perfect for this HST. I wonder if Obama's line to Vancouver will be a P3? Maybe P3's will become fashionable if Obama says it is good (like the Afghanistan war is now good)?

grish
16-04-2009, 03:20 PM
in europe, many of the good roads charge tolls. here, we don't have that. we expect the government to pay for our roads, but not for other transit options. If train is private business, then roads should be also. If roads are crown roads, then train should be too.

GizmoForMayor
16-04-2009, 04:19 PM
amen

Green Grovenor
16-04-2009, 06:06 PM
^did it now? How much public money was used to support it?

In 1937, the federal government provided $5 million in seed money to start the company that became Air Canada. Originally, it shared management with CN.

Most years Air Canada made money for the federal government. It was hard not to, given the regulated state of the industry that guaranteed the airline a monopoly on some choice routes.

In 1982, there was much angst when Air Canada managed to lose money -- a whopping $15 million.

Since privatization, the company has been in and out of bankruptcy. It lost $2.87 billion in 2003.

Air Canada has requested government subsidies many times since privitization -- in excess of $4 billion -- but I was unable to find a firm number on how many taxpayer dollars have actually been spent in support of the airline.

Despite the neoconservative view that the private sector always functions better than the public sector, I think recent events demonstrate that this generalization is untrue. Corporations owned by investors, like those owned by governments, sometimes do extremely stupid things. It is clear that only using capitalist tools -- or only using socialist tools -- means an economy will not reach its full potential.

Building a high-speed railway to Calgary would require the entire toolbox.

Transplanted_Edm
16-04-2009, 06:35 PM
The more we are able to link into a network of high speed rail, the more successful we would be. Tor-Ott-Mtl may stand on its own merits, but what about considering it as part of the way to get from Mtl to Chicago all by train? The more spots you connect on the network, the more travellers any one spot will have.

DrT
16-04-2009, 09:51 PM
^I think a Canadian system from Montreal to Toronto to Windsor/Detroit is implied by the map they provided. It already has lines connecting to Montreal and Detroit/Windsor, but the kicker is that they show a long and expensive line being built out to Buffalo, NY.

There is NO REASON TO BUILD A LINE TO BUFFALO....UNLESS...it were to tie in around Hamilton to a Montreal to Windsor line (already proposed by us) that would serve Toronto, etc (New York to Toronto, Boston to Toronto, etc).

RTA
17-04-2009, 01:14 PM
- It will kill the airport? Give me an example anywhere in the world where this has happened please and avoid talk about a Calgary conspiracy please, it gives me a headache.

I don't know if there are any suitable previous examples, but it's not hard to imagine how HSR between Edmonton and Calgary could harm YEG: We already have difficulties attracting new flights here because of how easy it is to connect through the hub that is Calgary instead, either by driving there or flying through. HSR - especially if it stops at YYC - will provide one more affordable and fast means to fly out of Calgary rather than out of Edmonton.

The possibility of this should be very attactive to Calgary's economic development interests. It's not a conspiracy, it's just the reality of business: if there's a way to further Calgary's economic success, they would be prudent to persue it.

moahunter
17-04-2009, 01:32 PM
Something being good for Calgary doesn't automatically make it bad for Edmonton. It is a very weak argument to say that an extra form of transportation should not be allowed because Calgary may benefit more than Edmonton. Most Edmontonians are going to benefit from an extra option to get to Caglary, and tourists are going to like this train too (for quick trips up to WEM or similar). I am also willing to bet that Edmonton corporations will get a bigger chunk of the construction work than Calgary. The only real question IMO is whether or not the cost would justify the benefit, not if it puts somebody's nose out of joint at YEG, greyhound, or elsewhere.

RTA
17-04-2009, 01:38 PM
Something being good for Calgary doesn't automatically make it bad for Edmonton.

No, but it is very possible; if it is bad for YEG then it IS bad for Edmonton.


It is a very weak argument to say that an extra form of transportation should not be allowed because Calgary may benefit more than Edmonton. Most Edmontonians are going to benefit from an extra option to get to Caglary, and tourists are going to like this train too (for quick trips up to WEM or similar). I am also willing to bet that Edmonton corporations will get a bigger chunk of the construction work than Calgary. The only real question IMO is whether or not the cost would justify the benefit, not if it puts somebody's nose out of joint at YEG, greyhound, or elsewhere.

That's exactly it; will the economic benefits to Edmonton be enough to offset any negative economic impact on YEG? I don't have an answer to that, but it is something that must be weighed very carefully, should not be taken lightly, and most definitely should not be dismissed outright.

moahunter
17-04-2009, 01:49 PM
No, but it is very possible; if it is bad for YEG then it IS bad for Edmonton..
It may be good for YEG - Edmonton could be the last stop of a tourist train from Bannf to Edmonton. I seriously doubt that the impact on Niksu's airport would be significant relative to the growth it is experiencing anyway, but even if it did hurt that, and Red Arrow, and Greyhound, this alone is not reason to not proceed. I am sure automobiles hurt the blacksmith business, but it didn't stop us moving forward.

RTA
17-04-2009, 02:04 PM
It may be good for YEG - Edmonton could be the last stop of a tourist train from Bannf to Edmonton.

Could be, but realistically this is extremely unlikely to happen, especially if the required flights leave from Calgary instead of Edmonton, which is what they do now, and what is likely to happen in greater numbers if we make it more convenient to do so.


I seriously doubt that the impact on Niksu's airport would be significant relative to the growth it is experiencing anyway, but even if it did hurt that, and Red Arrow, and Greyhound, this alone is not reason to not proceed.

It is disingenuous to call it "Nisku's airport." It is not "Nisku's airport" anymore than Pearson is "Mississauga's airport" or anymore than YVR is "Richmond's airport." It is the Edmonton International Airport.

You might be right about the impact, but as I said, we don't know if the impact is or is not reason for it to proceed; it must be analyzed, not dismissed or ignored.


I am sure automobiles hurt the blacksmith business, but it didn't stop us moving forward.

HSR isn't likely to put air travel out of business, so your comparison may be a bit overstated. Air travel is a tricky business, though, and our airport is already competing with Calgary's for business as it is. While we have made significant gains, we don't want to risk giving them up.

moahunter
17-04-2009, 02:08 PM
You might be right about the impact, but as I said, we don't know if the impact is or is not reason for it to proceed; it must be analyzed, not dismissed or ignored.
I disagree. Of course YEG is going to be opposed, just like Red Arrow and Greyhound. But it is totally irrelevant - one day both Calgary and YEG will be at capacity, but for now, the issue is can the economic corridoor and links between Calgary, Edmonton and Red Deer be enhanced by this? Not whether a few executives at YEG are worried growth won't be as fast under this scenario. Times change, we shouldn't be scared of a train because an airport might fly less planes - heck, a train is a lot better for our environment.

RTA
17-04-2009, 02:29 PM
^ moa, YEG's success is absolutely a key part of Edmonton's economic success. If YEG worries, we should be worried too.

A HSR between Edmonton and Calgary transports people between Edmonton and Calgary. An airport carries people to and from all over the country, the continent, and hopefully the world. This isn't about changing times or evolving technologies, this is about being competitive in a global economy. People are still flying whether or not we build HSR. The question is, do we want them all flying to and from Calgary, or to and from Edmonton?

ralph60
17-04-2009, 03:29 PM
Regarding roads being crown and railroads being private, there is a huge difference. Private car drivers and commercial truckers pay fuel tax, historically much more than has been put into road networks. In the U.S. fuel tax by law goes into roadway construction and maintenance, just compare the Interstates with the Trans Canada Highway system.
The railroads don't pay tax on their fuel, add to that the massive land grants given when the railways were built. (About half of the land within 10 miles of a rail line) The railways have no reason to complain about highway subsidies as they have had more than their share of govt. pork.

edmontonenthusiast
17-04-2009, 04:01 PM
It would be cool to have a high speed rail that is to the marvel of Europe but Canada is too spread out and way too concentrated. Most of our population is in Toronto, Montréal, Québec, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Hamilton, Ottawa, and Halifax and almost everywhere inbetween save Southern Ontario is small towns, small cities, and farmland. Not that is necessarily a bad thing, but it isn't the best for a high speed rail. i'd love to have a national high speed rail going through all the major cities as well as towns but i don't see that happening for a while. Vancouver-Seattle-Portland-San Francisco stretch is dense enough though as is the Alberta Corridor and the Windsor-Québec area but everywhere else would be long distances inbetween. America is very spread out but it's even more so in Canada. In the US you got a city of 50-75,000 every 500 mi (aside from very remote areas/rural areas like Montana, Wyoming, South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska).

Sonic Death Monkey
17-04-2009, 04:28 PM
As for HSR killing YEG - yes it would if HSR connects to YYC but not YEG. That's the plan that Rod Love is pushing.

GizmoForMayor
17-04-2009, 04:36 PM
The question is, do we want them all flying to and from Calgary, or to and from Edmonton?

Why do people always assume that only people from Edmonton would use the train to catch flights from Calgary? What about people from Calgary catching flights from Edmonton? People will go where it's most convenient and where the schedule suits them best and even though the balance might be slightly in favour of Calgary (because it currently offers more options) this is negligable.
Basically what I'm trying to say is, people are only going to take the train down to Calgary's airport for a flight that does not exist here. I mean, why spend money on a train fare plus two hours on a train for a flight that is also available from Edmonton? This means the train would only really have an impact on flights between Calgary & Edmonton and little else. Think about it.
As for new flights all going to one airport (of course this is assumed to be Calgary), I can give you plenty of examples of European airports that are very close together (much closer than these two), connected by HSR and are doing good business nonetheless.


Regarding roads being crown and railroads being private, there is a huge difference. Private car drivers and commercial truckers pay fuel tax, historically much more than has been put into road networks. In the U.S. fuel tax by law goes into roadway construction and maintenance, just compare the Interstates with the Trans Canada Highway system.?

Sure people pay a fuel tax, but people on railways pay fares (and we're talking passenger rail here, not freight), which are higher than the fuel tax. The point is that both roads and passanger rail are public services to get people from point A to point B but only one is ever seen as such (at least in this province)

GizmoForMayor
17-04-2009, 04:42 PM
As for HSR killing YEG - yes it would if HSR connects to YYC but not YEG. That's the plan that Rod Love is pushing.

What are you basing that on??? This is the kind of stuff that gives me a headache... do you think a government would spend significant tax dollars on a project like this and purposely alienate 1/3 of voters (Edmontonians) by leaving out a stop at YEG?? That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard, sorry.
I know somewhere there is a little map omitting a stop 'dot' at YEG, but common... think about it! This thing is not even in the planning stages yet, so where stops will and will not be has not been determined (nor is Rod Love pushing to leave YEG out, for crying out loud). There will be a stop at YEG and I will bet anything on that and anybody else with common sense will too.

RTA
20-04-2009, 11:11 AM
Why do people always assume that only people from Edmonton would use the train to catch flights from Calgary?

Because they already do this. In one of the ECCA threads, kcantor posted a figure from the EEDC of the estimated number of people who drive from Edmonton to Calgary to catch a flight. While I can't find the reference at this time, needless to say the number was staggeringly high, and represents that much in lost revenue to the airport, and lost opportunity to draw direct flights to the ultimate destinations of those travellers.


What about people from Calgary catching flights from Edmonton?

This does not currently happen with the frequency you might imagine.


People will go where it's most convenient and where the schedule suits them best and even though the balance might be slightly in favour of Calgary (because it currently offers more options) this is negligable.

It is not negligible. For every person that drives, flies, or in the future takes a train to Calgary to catch a direct flight out of YYC means YEG loses that opportunity to fill its own direct flights and loses that much more clout to draw more direct flights. Adding that rail option may very well undo much of the progress that YEG has made in recent years, and we need to be mindful of that when considering HST.


Basically what I'm trying to say is, people are only going to take the train down to Calgary's airport for a flight that does not exist here.

And by further enabling this to happen, we never well get those flights, and in fact may lose some more to Calgary's hub. Do we want to risk undoing all the gains our airport has made? If not, then the impact of HSR on our aiprort must be a cnsideration when studying HST.

moahunter
20-04-2009, 11:18 AM
Because they already do this.
If they are already driving instead, then HST will have no impact on YEG - the impact will instead be on the QEII. So what is YEG afraid of? There are always people who are scared of change, and people who embrace it and make the most of it. It is a bit sad if YEG is full or the former and not the later.

HST will happen eventually, it is just a matter of when. YEG should embrace change, and look at the opportunities this will present, to truley be the linked gateway to the North. I am sure Nisku's residents and workers, some of them even YEG workers, are going to enjoy the link to downtown Edmonton that the train will bring. This airport won't be 1/3rd of the way to Calgary anymore, it will instead be part of an integrated Albertan transportation system. I have no doubt that Calgary residents are going to enjoy jumping on the new exciting HST to take their Euro flights from Edmonton - this will be something everybody in Alberta can be proud of.

If the executives at YEG had any brains between them, they would be working right now with Calgary airport and the province to design how the new flight schedules could enhance both cities and both airports, rather than digging their heads in the sand. By jumping on board early - they will be able to negotiate something highly beneficial for YEG, but by holding out and crying foul, they'll likely end up doing all of Edmonton, Nisku, YEG and Alberta a disservice. The sooner YEG works with the decision maker instead of trying to become the decision maker, the sooner they will have real influence over the decision and how positive or not it will be for YEG. For with the right criteria of which types of flights will operate where, YEG can do well from this. But with no influence at all (and no, Mandel is not the decision maker on this one - the Province is the key), YEG will likely just shoot itself in the foot as an obstructionist to be ignored / overridden.

RTA
20-04-2009, 12:32 PM
If they are already driving instead, then HST will have no impact on YEG - the impact will instead be on the QEII.

I'm going to disagree with you there. HST will add another convenient and affordable means for travelers to fly out of YYC, including for those who do not drive.


So what is YEG afraid of? There are always people who are scared of change, and people who embrace it and make the most of it. It is a bit sad if YEG is full or the former and not the later.

HST will happen eventually, it is just a matter of when. YEG should embrace change, and look at the opportunities this will present, to truley be the linked gateway to the North. I am sure Nisku's residents and workers, some of them even YEG workers, are going to enjoy the link to downtown Edmonton that the train will bring. This airport won't be 1/3rd of the way to Calgary anymore, it will instead be part of an integrated Albertan transportation system.

You haven't said anything here that indicates how HST will benefit YEG. YEG can be linked to downtown by LRT far more easily than HST.


I have no doubt that Calgary residents are going to enjoy jumping on the new exciting HST to take their Euro flights from Edmonton - this will be something everybody in Alberta can be proud of.

As indicated above, air travel does not currently work this way in Canada, and HST wil not change that. Calgary has more direct flights than Edmonton, so why would Calgarians take a train to Edmonton to fly? This will not happen, plain and simple.

But Edmontonians will continue to go to Calgary to fly out of there instead of here, and likely moreso if we give them one more afordable and convenient means to do so. That is lost revenue, lost clout for obtaining more flights, and could very well lead to lost flights entirely. This is not a scare tactic, it is not fear mongering, it is simply business.


If the executives at YEG had any brains between them, they would be working right now with Calgary airport and the province to design how the new flight schedules could enhance both cities and both airports, rather than digging their heads in the sand. By jumping on board early - they will be able to negotiate something highly beneficial for YEG, but by holding out and crying foul, they'll likely end up doing all of Edmonton, Nisku, YEG and Alberta a disservice. The sooner YEG works with the decision maker instead of trying to become the decision maker, the sooner they will have real influence over the decision and how positive or not it will be for YEG. For with the right criteria of which types of flights will operate where, YEG can do well from this. But with no influence at all (and no, Mandel is not the decision maker on this one - the Province is the key), YEG will likely just shoot itself in the foot as an obstructionist to be ignored / overridden.

YEG and YYC are not in cooperation, they are in competition for travelers and for flights. Again, that's just how the business works here. Now if you throw a provincially-supported and funded HST train that negatively impacts the business at YEG in favour of YYC, you better believe we should all be crying foul, regardless of whether this is planned for that purpose or not. HST must benefit both cities equally; if it does not, it must not be built by the province.

moahunter
20-04-2009, 12:39 PM
As indicated above, air travel does not currently work this way in Canada, and HST wil not change that. Calgary has more direct flights than Edmonton, so why would Calgarians take a train to Edmonton to fly? This will not happen, plain and simple.
.
Why would Edmontonians take a train to fly from Calgary? The same reason that Calgarians would, they would use it for the links that are to be only provided through Edmonton, which can be a big part of the deal. Calgarians want to ride this train and will work to help anybody who supports it. If YEG said today - yes, we would join and support the push for this train - but we want "these types of flights through YEG", then I have no doubt the Province and Calgary airport would agree to negotiate it. The whole point of joining these airports is so that they can work as a network. As an example, I could easily see all European flights for Calgary and Edmonton routed through Edmonton - this would have a huge tourist spin off for Edmonton too. The key is to get in and negotiate something postive, rather than sit on the sidelines like a baby and whine.

GizmoForMayor
20-04-2009, 12:49 PM
Maybe we should just build a giant wall around Edmonton, that way everybody would HAVE to use YEG...

But seriously here, what is the provinces'/Edmonton's priority here? Is it to have a big airport we can all point to and say 'look how big our airport is' or is it to provide solid transportation alternatives and a greener environment for its citizens? This whole fearmongering about YEG is starting to get ridiculous. I could accept it a little more if Edmonton had only a 100,000 people and a 'fragile' airport, but all I see is a city with a million people and a giant inferiority complex. As moahunter points out, it's time for us to embrace this thing because it will happen (the only true debate is about when) so we might as well start acting like a confident city and make some waves at the decision table.

RTA
20-04-2009, 01:26 PM
Why would Edmontonians take a train to fly from Calgary? The same reason that Calgarians would, they would use it for the links that are to be only provided through Edmonton, which can be a big part of the deal. Calgarians want to ride this train and will work to help anybody who supports it. If YEG said today - yes, we would join and support the push for this train - but we want "these types of flights through YEG", then I have no doubt the Province and Calgary airport would agree to negotiate it. The whole point of joining these airports is so that they can work as a network. As an example, I could easily see all European flights for Calgary and Edmonton routed through Edmonton - this would have a huge tourist spin off for Edmonton too. The key is to get in and negotiate something postive, rather than sit on the sidelines like a baby and whine.

This post only serves to tell me that you have no idea how airports or air travel work, particularly here in Alberta.

RTA
20-04-2009, 01:35 PM
Maybe we should just build a giant wall around Edmonton, that way everybody would HAVE to use YEG...

But seriously here, what is the provinces'/Edmonton's priority here? Is it to have a big airport we can all point to and say 'look how big our airport is' or is it to provide solid transportation alternatives and a greener environment for its citizens?

Will HSR replace all air travel, across the globe? The answer is no, it won't. Airports aren't going anywhere, so green argument in this discussion is moot. On the other hand, a healthy airport contributes to a healthy economy, and a healthy airport means lots of passengers, flights, and growth.


This whole fearmongering about YEG is starting to get ridiculous. I could accept it a little more if Edmonton had only a 100,000 people and a 'fragile' airport, but all I see is a city with a million people and a giant inferiority complex. As moahunter points out, it's time for us to embrace this thing because it will happen (the only true debate is about when) so we might as well start acting like a confident city and make some waves at the decision table.

This isn't about image or confidence or inferiority complexes, we are in competition with Calgary's airport for passengers and flights, plain and simple. It isn't fear mongering if it is a real concern. If public money is to fund something that could have a negative impact on our economy, we need to study that impact, not sweep it under the rug, plug our ears and hum real loud while we hope for the best.

In other words, I'm not saying "don't build HSR." I'm saying "if HSR will negatively impact our airport and by extension negatively impact our economy and our ability to remain competitive, it must not be built with public money."

moahunter
20-04-2009, 01:39 PM
This post only serves to tell me that you have no idea how airports or air travel work, particularly here in Alberta.
^Really? Well your last post tells me you are afraid of the big bad Calgary airport - that you think Edmonton airport is not capable of servicing both Calgary and Edmonton residents . You seem to imagine that this rapid train can only go in one direction, that Calgarians hate Edmonton so much that they won't hop on this quick and exciting form of transit to get a better air link, but that Edmontonians will all jump at the chance...

IMO there is absolutely no reason why the two airports cannot work together for the benefit of all Albertans - and the Province can provide the leadership as part of HST planning to achieve that. This is exactly the sort of integration / synergy that HST could present with dedicated routes in dedicated cities. There is no reason why both airports can't grow. YEG has two choices. It can whine and moan, and watch a decision be made which it has zero influence over. Or, it can seize the opportunity this presents, and get involved. One is positive and meaningful. The other is small minded and completely lacking in confidence.

grish
20-04-2009, 01:41 PM
the number from talking to Reg Miley forum was 750,000 edmonton passengers per year using YYC instead. the fear that this number will only grow with HSR is reasonable and we should be weary of that possibility. no walls, just looking after ourselves... so, when HSR is being planned, we need to make sure that there are no other stops--downtown Edmonton to downtown Red Deer to downtown Calgary. Nothing else.

GizmoForMayor
20-04-2009, 01:45 PM
^ "Airports aren't going anywhere, so green argument in this discussion is moot."

No it's not, because HSR would take countless cars off the road and in all likelihood eliminate the need to expand QEII (which, by the way, also costs a ton of money and brings less back).

As for HSR possibly impacting our economy negatively, again this is pure speculation. This idea is only based on fear (unreasonable fear, in my opinion) while there are studies and numbers backing up the argument that it would be hugely benefitial to our economy. If you disagree with this, please for once include some facts and figures to support your opposition.

moahunter
20-04-2009, 01:50 PM
we need to make sure that there are no other stops--downtown Edmonton to downtown Red Deer to downtown Calgary. Nothing else.
That's not realistic. But what is to stop Edmonton, and YEG, getting involved, and demanding that certain flights to certain destinations be exclusivley out of Edmonton? That's the way to do it - negotiate a good if not fantastic outcome for YEG as part of the planning process.

GizmoForMayor
20-04-2009, 01:52 PM
I don't know if that is possible, but in any case I don't think it's even necessary.

RTA
20-04-2009, 01:53 PM
Well your last post tells me you are afraid of the big bad Calgary airport, and think that Edmonton airport is not capable of servicing both Calgary and Edmonton residents - that it will automatically lose.

Calgary is already in a better position than we are. We are making huge gains, yes, but they are still way ahead of us. Why should my tax dollars enable Calgary to make further gains at our expense?


IMO there is absolutely no reason why the two airports cannot work together for the benefit of all Albertans - and the Province can provide the leadership as part of HST planning to achieve that - this is exactly the sort of integration / synergy that HST could present, there is no reason why both airports can't grow.

Yes there is, and I've stated it repeatedly: Our airports compete for business. Our cities compete for business. There is no cooperation. The airlines chose the airports they fly in and out of an airport based on the business case that can be made for each airport. Calgary cannot tell an airline "fly out of Edmonton instead." Nor would they, nor should they ever be expected to.

So by giving Edmontonians - both the existing 750,000 (thanks grish) and then others who would use an HST option on top of that - the ability to conveniently and cheaply fly out of Calgary instead of Edmonton, our business case for more flights is diminished, and many routes could even disappear as they are consolidated in Calgary.

grish
20-04-2009, 01:53 PM
There is absolutely no way HST will have a negative impact on our economy. We will either have status quo or will benefit from it.

GizmoForMayor
20-04-2009, 01:57 PM
The Edmonton metropolitan areas has 1,000,000 plus people... the airlines which are now making a profit flying numerous routes of out Edmonton would not stop making a profit flying the same routes of out Edmonton if there was a train, so why stop? That makes no sense

moahunter
20-04-2009, 01:58 PM
It just boggles my mind, that YEG which is being offered another potential market of more than a million people (Calgary and Red Deer), is afraid to get involved, because a competitor will gain access to its market. Freeing up trade creates wealth, artificial barriers just make us all poorer at the end of the day. IMO YEG is good enough to compete - it is sad to see that the people who work there lack the confidence to believe that.

RTA
20-04-2009, 01:58 PM
There is absolutely no way HST will have a negative impact on our economy. We will either have status quo or will benefit from it.

I wouldn't be so absolute, but that's why I'm saying it needs to be taken into consideration. That's all I'm asking for. I'm not asking for a kaibosh, I'm just saying it needs to be studied, not shrugged off simply for a dream.

ARGH.

GizmoForMayor
20-04-2009, 02:05 PM
There is absolutely no way HST will have a negative impact on our economy. We will either have status quo or will benefit from it.

I wouldn't be so absolute, but that's why I'm saying it needs to be taken into consideration. That's all I'm asking for. I'm not asking for a kaibosh, I'm just saying it needs to be studied, not shrugged off simply for a dream.

ARGH.

We need to be prudent, of course I agree. But at the same time, there has already been a study which concluded HST would be beneficial to our economy. You may argue this study was biased (but if you do, please indicate which part of the study you found wanting) but we cannot continue to carry out study after study if opponents of HST will simply always deny their findings. We will never reach a point where everyone is convinced it is a good idea, so at some point we will have to move ahead despite objections from some. Sure, more homework needs to be done... but at some point we just need to let the doubters doubt and carry on.

RTA
20-04-2009, 07:16 PM
^ What study was this? Link?

Transplanted_Edm
20-04-2009, 07:50 PM
It just boggles my mind, that YEG which is being offered another potential market of more than a million people (Calgary and Red Deer), is afraid to get involved, because a competitor will gain access to its market. Freeing up trade creates wealth, artificial barriers just make us all poorer at the end of the day. IMO YEG is good enough to compete - it is sad to see that the people who work there lack the confidence to believe that.

Agree strongly. This is about improving transportation links. I completely disagree that this can't be about "growing the entire pie" vs. stealing another city's piece of the pie as RTA seems to be worried about.

GizmoForMayor
20-04-2009, 09:00 PM
^ What study was this? Link?

http://vanhorne.info/files/vanhorne/HSRFullReport(1062004).pdf

kcantor
20-04-2009, 09:49 PM
^ "Airports aren't going anywhere, so green argument in this discussion is moot."

No it's not, because HSR would take countless cars off the road and in all likelihood eliminate the need to expand QEII (which, by the way, also costs a ton of money and brings less back).

As for HSR possibly impacting our economy negatively, again this is pure speculation. This idea is only based on fear (unreasonable fear, in my opinion) while there are studies and numbers backing up the argument that it would be hugely benefitial to our economy. If you disagree with this, please for once include some facts and figures to support your opposition.
we've already established that taking ALL of the edmonton/calgary traffic off of qeII would only reduce traffic by about 9,600 cars per day although realistically the total potential hst market would be no more than 2,250 of those. the total traffic on qwII at beddington in calgary is about 125,000 per day or more than 81,000 cars assuming the same 35% previously attributed to trucks. at nisku those numbers would be 68,000 and 44,000 respectively. if your rationale is to take cars off of qeII then you should be quite happy putting hst on hold and spending that same 5 billion on lrt and local transit service (including extending lrt to both international airports) where it will do a much better job of reaching your goal.

GizmoForMayor
20-04-2009, 10:38 PM
for the hell of it I'm going to post this here too:

Okay, so I’ve crunched some numbers according to Ken’s original calculation.

Here is what Ken started off with:

- 675 out of a total of 23,000 daily cars will be taken off the road with HSR between Calgary and Edmonton. This represents a percentage of less than 3 percent of total traffic, which in my mind is far too low, but for the sake of argument we will use this as a starting point.

In addition to this however we need to consider the following:

- If 23’000 cars were on the road daily between Calgary and Edmonton in 2008, the number will undoubtedly increase by 2019 (ten years from now and in my opinion the earliest possible date for HSR if it was kick-started today). Of course that means 3% will be a higher number too.
- People fly as well. Currently there are 19 daily (weekday) Air Canada flights and 5 WestJet flights between Calgary and Edmonton. The smallest aircraft Air Canada has, the Dash 8-300, seats 50 people, while WestJet’s smallest airplane seats 119.
- People also use the bus. Currently there are 17 bus trips daily (weekday) between Edmonton and Calgary, only counting Greyhound and Red Arrow. Bus capacity is around 50 passengers.
- Many business use charter road/air transport to get to between Calgary and Edmonton.
- Some trips to/from Calgary would undoubtedly only be made if there was a fast, comfortable and affordable to get there and back. Of course this number will only be based on speculation, so lets called it the ‘X Factor’.

Using these factors, we can make a very, very conservative estimate of train ridership:

- Lets assume 28,000 cars will be on the road between Calgary and Edmonton in 2019. If 3% of those cars (as suggested by Ken) would take the train, that means 840 cars would be off the road. Of course not every car has only one person in it, so lets estimate low and say each car has 1.5 passengers on average. Total: 1’260 of people going on the train per day each way, just based on car traffic.
- If Air Canada has 19 flights a day (based on the capacity listed above) and flies at about 80% capacity (which is the current average) it would transport about 760 people every weekday, each way. If only 30% of those would take the train instead (an unrealistically low number if you ask me, but lets go with it), 228 per day would take the train each way, every weekday. And this is assuming the numbers do not go up in the next ten years.
- If WestJet has 5 flights a day (again based on capacity listed above) and flies at about 80% capacity, it would transport about 480 people every weekday, each way. Again, if only 30%of those would take the train instead, 144 per day would take the train each way, every weekday.
- And for the sake of making this a really, really, really conservative estimate lets assume not a single bus passenger would switch over (because maybe it would still be cheaper to take the bus), not a single corporate/org/govt charter bus/airplane would switch to train and not a single ‘X Factor’ (see description in first section) person would ever use the train.

According to this very, very, very conservative estimate you would have an average of 1,632 people traveling between Calgary and Edmonton by train every single weekday. If you times this by two (one for each direction) you get 3,264 people. If every person pays $50 on average for their trip each way, you get a total of $163,200. If you times this by 365 days (I know weekends would be less, but presumably ‘business class’ passengers would pay more, so it would even out) you get an amount of $59’568’000.00 in income, minus expenses of course.

Now, since you got me going, lets do another calculation. Still very conservative, but slightly less so:

- Instead of the 3%, 5% of cars take the train in 2019. You end up with 2’100 people switching to train (still assuming there are an average of 1.5 people in each car).
- Lets say 50% of AC and WJ passengers between Calgary and Edmonton switch to trains (and lets face it, why wouldn’t they?), still based on the same numbers as above you would get a total of 380 people from Air Canada and 240 from WestJet.
- Lets say only ten percent of bus passengers switch (assuming each of the 17 buses only has 15 passengers), this means about 26 people, so not much there.
- Lets assume 100 people would switch from corporate/org/govt air or bus charters.
- I think the ‘X Factor’ (people who would take a trip to/from Calgary who are not doing so now for sport, shopping, entertainment, student, etc) would constitute about 20% of each train, but to keep it conservative lets say it’s 10%. So far, according to this calculation we have 2’820 people, so ten percent would be 282 people in addition for a total of 3’102 people per day.

So according to this still very conservative estimate you would have an average of 3’102 people traveling between Calgary and Edmonton every single weekday, in each direction. If you times this by two (one for each direction) you get 6’204 people each day. If each person pays $50 each way, you get a total of $310,200. If you times this by 365 days (again, assuming the difference of weekends is made up by the higher cost of business class) you get an amount of $113,223,000.00 in income before expenses. The train would transport about 2 million people per year.

The Bombardier trains which were shown in Edmonton a few years ago had a capacity of 620 people per train. So according to these estimates you would already have 3-5 fully sold out trains at the beginning of operation in 2019 per day, but in all likelihood way more as these are very low estimates.

Now I don’t know why I went through the trouble of compiling all that (too much spare time and a current lack of job/girlfriend) but there you are. Feel free to argue and debate, but I’m pretty confident this is a fair estimate. Ken, any thoughts?

Oh, and by the way, I am not sponsored by Bombardier :-)

Edmonton PRT
21-04-2009, 12:26 AM
See rebuttal and math corrections on post #404
http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=5052&page=21

Edmonton PRT
21-04-2009, 07:47 AM
Did anyone realize that Obama's plan is for faster rail service with "moderate-speed rail," running at top speeds of 110 mph and average speeds of only 60 to 70 mph. Many American railroads ran trains this fast in the 1930s through the 1960s, and they were unable to keep people out of their cars.

Prior to WWII, trains were faster than automobiles and even airplane travel. In 1933 US rail for high speed services with an average speed of up to 130 km/h (80 mph) and top speed of more than 160 km/h (100 mph).

USFRA defines HSR at +90mph (+144km/hr) trains not European HSR usually defined as +125 mph (+200km/hr)

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 09:06 AM
This is the problem with the HSR definition... a train between Calgary and Edmonton would not have to be much faster than 110 mph to be effective, so we're not talking Bullet trains here

moahunter
21-04-2009, 09:10 AM
Prior to WWII, trains were faster than automobiles and even airplane travel. In 1933 US rail for high speed services with an average speed of up to 130 km/h (80 mph) and top speed of more than 160 km/h (100 mph).

I also think that's an important point. There are a whole raft of options, from simply upgrading the existing rails, to laying new track. Even when laying new track, there are different options, including choosing not to electrify and running with a less expensive technology, or tilting trains that don't' require the amount of engineering that the TGV's track did (TGV is quite old technology now). There is a need for a better link between Calgary and Edmonton to get these short uncomfortable flights out of the air. All it needs to do, is be comparable or slightly slower than aircraft times (being total time from check in to check out). It won't be hard at all given how horrible check in times are now (I am thinking a max speed 200km/hr with good acceleration would be sufficient). Whatever we do, I'd like to see it tie in to Obama's plans, which presents synergies and opportuntiies with the US for local busiensses under NAFTA.

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 09:36 AM
See rebuttal and math corrections on post #404
http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=5052&page=21

Follow the same link for correction of PRT's math and vindication of mine.

RTA
21-04-2009, 10:36 AM
http://vanhorne.info/files/vanhorne/HSRFullReport(1062004).pdf (http://vanhorne.info/files/vanhorne/HSRFullReport%281062004%29.pdf)

Thanks for the link. I flipped through the document, and I can't say I'm swayed by the contents. In particular, the indirect economic impacts have largely been glossed over, and impacts on existing private transportation carriers has been trivialized, which to me is unacceptable given that HSR as proposed would be a publicly-funded venture.

For what little it did have to say about impact on YEG, they give no indication of any benefit to the airport brought by HSR, only that "no job loses would be expected at Edmonton International Airport." Nothing about possible lost revenues or flights, nor even any possible positive impacts on the airport.

On top of that, if you look at page 98 of the report, it actually predicts a net loss of business attraction and negligible change in employment growth for Edmonton.

Colour me unconvinced.

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 10:55 AM
RTA, there is also a study which was conducted for the government by 'Transportation Economics and Management Systems', although it looks more at the feasibility in terms of potential users. It concludes there is a need for it, but I can't find a link or the actual report but I will send a link once I do.

As for the airport, the only realistic loss of passengers would be from those travellers who would now take the train between Calgary and Edmonton. All the air routes to farther destinations currently flying out of Edmonton and making a profit would certainly not stop making a profit because there is now a train to Calgary. As long as airlines are making a profit by flying directly out of Edmonton they will undoubtedly maintain those routes. If you disagree, I think it is up to you to show me a study for once that shows otherwise.

We (the public) are always paying money to expand the airport and getting a little 'capacity relief' by putting some passengers to Calgary on a train would not be a bad thing.

raz0469
21-04-2009, 11:05 AM
As long as airlines are making a profit by flying directly out of Edmonton they will undoubtedly maintain those routes.

Not if they can make MORE of a profit by centralizing flights to Calgary with the expectation that people will hop on the train to Alberta International.

RTA
21-04-2009, 11:13 AM
^ Bingo.


We (the public) are always paying money to expand the airport and getting a little 'capacity relief' by putting some passengers to Calgary on a train would not be a bad thing.

The public is not paying for the expansion, air travelers are through the airport improvement fee.

Also, the "capacity relief" comment is a joke, right? You would rather see our international airport lose business and revenue because you don't think the airport needs to be expanded? That's your argument? For real?

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 11:25 AM
I'm sorry, but last time I checked passengers were members of the public... did this change?

Do you think, for example, if an airline moved all its flights to Minneapolis to the Calgary airport, no other competing airline would realize there is a big market (1 million plus) left vacant up here? If an airline leaves and abandons a profitable route in the hopes of centralizing flights, another company will simply move in to the vacated Edmonton market (if they are smart) and pick up the profit the first airline has abandoned. Centralizing only works if you can make sure no other airline picks up the flight your company abandoned in Edmonton, which is impossible. Common sense really. If a second airline did start up a flight to Minneapolis again, most people from Edmonton would use it rather than taking the train down to Calgary first.

As for your last comment, it's not about seeing the YEG lose business... all I said is that if it has to expand slightly slower it wouldn't be the end of the world.

RTA
21-04-2009, 11:43 AM
I'm sorry, but last time I checked passengers were members of the public... did this change?

"Public" implies "taxpayer dollars." Please be more clear in the future.


Do you think, for example, if an airline moved all its flights to Minneapolis to the Calgary airport, no other competing airline would realize there is a big market (1 million plus) left vacant up here? If an airline leaves and abandons a profitable route in the hopes of centralizing flights, another company will simply move in to the vacated Edmonton market (if they are smart) and pick up the profit the first airline has abandoned. Centralizing only works if you can make sure no other airline picks up the flight your company abandoned in Edmonton, which is impossible. Common sense really. If a second airline did start up a flight to Minneapolis again, most people from Edmonton would use it rather than taking the train down to Calgary first.

As a matter of fact, this is a very likely scenario. Calgary is already a major airline hub, and attracts more flights than Edmonton. This is why so many travelers already either drive to Calgary or fly through Calgary to get to their ultimate destination. Airlines have extremely tight margins, why would they split up their flights to and from Alberta to two cities and airports which are a stone's throw away from each other (as far as commercial aviation goes) when they can serve both markets just as easily and far more economically with a single flight from a single airport that already has more connections? If what you say were even remotely true, we would not be fighting as hard as we are for more flights and campaigning for travelers to "Fly Edmonton First," because we would already have those flights. But that's not how it works, empirical evidence should be enough to see that.


As for your last comment, it's not about seeing the YEG lose business... all I said is that if it has to expand slightly slower it wouldn't be the end of the world.

Except that in business, growth is everything. If you do not have growth, you are not competitive and you will be eaten alive by your competitors. To slow growth IS to lose business, that's just how it works.

moahunter
21-04-2009, 11:54 AM
Except that in business, growth is everything. If you do not have growth, you are not competitive and you will be eaten alive by your competitors. To slow growth IS to lose business, that's just how it works.
But RTA, the point you seem incapable of understanding, is that aside from domesitic filghts between Edmonton and Calgary, the pie is not going to shrink. You are worried that YEG's share of the pie will decline relative to somebody elses. That is always a risk with change though - it is why business will often fight change (for example, a supermarket that lobies and spends money on legal fees to stop a competitor setting up a rival nearby). It isn't for the greater good though, YEG could win a lot of friends and support by taking a glass half full, instead of glass half empty approach, for like it or not, YEG is not the decision maker on this one, rather, the public, through our PC party, are.

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 12:02 PM
I'm sorry, but last time I checked passengers were members of the public... did this change?

"Public" implies "taxpayer dollars." Please be more clear in the future.


Do you think, for example, if an airline moved all its flights to Minneapolis to the Calgary airport, no other competing airline would realize there is a big market (1 million plus) left vacant up here? If an airline leaves and abandons a profitable route in the hopes of centralizing flights, another company will simply move in to the vacated Edmonton market (if they are smart) and pick up the profit the first airline has abandoned. Centralizing only works if you can make sure no other airline picks up the flight your company abandoned in Edmonton, which is impossible. Common sense really. If a second airline did start up a flight to Minneapolis again, most people from Edmonton would use it rather than taking the train down to Calgary first.

As a matter of fact, this is a very likely scenario. Calgary is already a major airline hub, and attracts more flights than Edmonton. This is why so many travelers already either drive to Calgary or fly through Calgary to get to their ultimate destination. Airlines have extremely tight margins, why would they split up their flights to and from Alberta to two cities and airports which are a stone's throw away from each other (as far as commercial aviation goes) when they can serve both markets just as easily and far more economically with a single flight from a single airport that already has more connections? If what you say were even remotely true, we would not be fighting as hard as we are for more flights and campaigning for travelers to "Fly Edmonton First," because we would already have those flights. But that's not how it works, empirical evidence should be enough to see that.


As for your last comment, it's not about seeing the YEG lose business... all I said is that if it has to expand slightly slower it wouldn't be the end of the world.

Except that in business, growth is everything. If you do not have growth, you are not competitive and you will be eaten alive by your competitors. To slow growth IS to lose business, that's just how it works.

Public in my estimation means 'not private', as in not funded by a privately owned company but by people like you and me... members of the public. I think that's clear enough.

The only flights that are currently operated only out of Calgary are the ones that cannot be profitably supported by two airports in Alberta. The flights which have been operating out of both airports for some time obviously make a profit (even if only a slim one) out of both places. How do you not think that if an airline abandoned a profitable route to 'centralize' in Calgary another airline would not jump in and pick this route up? Of course they would. And the first airline would then not achieve its goal of centralizing in Calgary because Edmonton traffic would still go through YEG with the 'second' airline. This is why the first airline would never abandon the profitable route in the hopes of more profit in Calgary, because it would be too risky a strategy.

Your last comment strikes me as ironic because HSR would undoubtedly help both Edmonton and Calgary become one 'economic unit' and therefore grow as a whole. So, in your own words, "Except that in business, growth is everything. If you do not have growth, you are not competitive and you will be eaten alive by your competitors. To slow growth IS to lose business, that's just how it works." Lets put this Calgary/Edmonton rivalry bull#(*$ aside and both cities will benefit.

RTA
21-04-2009, 01:16 PM
But RTA, the point you seem incapable of understanding, is that aside from domesitic filghts between Edmonton and Calgary, the pie is not going to shrink. You are worried that YEG's share of the pie will decline relative to somebody elses. That is always a risk with change though - it is why business will often fight change (for example, a supermarket that lobies and spends money on legal fees to stop a competitor setting up a rival nearby). It isn't for the greater good though, YEG could win a lot of friends and support by taking a glass half full, instead of glass half empty approach, for like it or not, YEG is not the decision maker on this one, rather, the public, through our PC party, are.

It's not that I'm incapable of understanding anything (but thanks for the thinly veiled insult nonetheless), it's that I won't speak in absolutes like so many others on this thread.

Already, the number of people who fly via YYC or drive there to catch a flight is a problem for YEG. I hope we can agree on this much. Given that, is it not then in the realm of possibility that giving those people access to another easy, convenient, and relatively cheap means to do so could have a negative impact on YEG? And given that YEG's growth is important to our economy, does not a negative impact on YEG also have a negative impact on Edmonton's regional economy as well?

This is the question being asked (and not just by me). Now, if HST were a fully private venture backed by regional business interests along the entire length of the line, that would be one thing. That would be free-market competition at its best.

However, given that this is being looked at as a publically-funded project, the question of how it will impact private transportation businesses including air transportation at YEG cannot be ignored. That's all I'm saying, is that it needs to be investigated more thoroughly to ensure that the potential net economic gains are greater than the potential economic loses, specifically on exisiting transportation, and even more specifically on how it will impact the challenges that already exist for YEG.

We don't know the answer until it is studied properly. If the answer is a positive one for Edmonton, then go for it. If it is not, then what reason would we have to support it?

raz0469
21-04-2009, 01:40 PM
Public in my estimation means 'not private', as in not funded by a privately owned company but by people like you and me... members of the public. I think that's clear enough.

You implied that the "public", as in every tax payer, pays for improvements at YEG. The reality is, only those people who are using the facility are paying for it's expansion. However that is NOT the case with HSR. If the "public" funds it in the form of the Alberta government contributing billions of dollars to it, every single citizen of Alberta will have paid for it even though they may never use it. Of course the same argument can be made for pretty much any public spending in the province.

But it's easy to see there's a distinction between airport expansion funding and HSR funding. One isn't "public" at all, despite your claims otherwise.

RTA
21-04-2009, 01:42 PM
Public in my estimation means 'not private', as in not funded by a privately owned company but by people like you and me... members of the public. I think that's clear enough.

You've made it clear now, but it wasn't to begin with.


The only flights that are currently operated only out of Calgary are the ones that cannot be profitably supported by two airports in Alberta. The flights which have been operating out of both airports for some time obviously make a profit (even if only a slim one) out of both places. How do you not think that if an airline abandoned a profitable route to 'centralize' in Calgary another airline would not jump in and pick this route up? Of course they would. And the first airline would then not achieve its goal of centralizing in Calgary because Edmonton traffic would still go through YEG with the 'second' airline. This is why the first airline would never abandon the profitable route in the hopes of more profit in Calgary, because it would be too risky a strategy.

If this makes so much sense, why hasn't it happened? What you are saying should make sense in theory, but ignores the reality of the here and now. Right now, Calgary is the hub and has far more flights than we do. Right now, many Edmontonians drive to Calgary or fly through Calgary to take advantage of those flights. Because Calgary already has that advantage and airlines are comfortable with it, Edmonton has to market and fight like crazy to attract any new flights at all, and to encourage people to use those flights instead of going through Calgary.

Taking it back to the matter at hand, the concern is that HSR may cause more passengers to fly via Calgary instead of out of Edmonton. This is lost revenue for YEG, fewer passengers makes it harder to justify the profitability of new routes to prospective airlines, and the less people using our direct flights could easily see them disappear.

Then again, HSR may not cause this problem. This is why it needs to be studied, which is all I'm asking.


Your last comment strikes me as ironic because HSR would undoubtedly help both Edmonton and Calgary become one 'economic unit' and therefore grow as a whole. So, in your own words, "Except that in business, growth is everything. If you do not have growth, you are not competitive and you will be eaten alive by your competitors. To slow growth IS to lose business, that's just how it works." Lets put this Calgary/Edmonton rivalry bull#(*$ aside and both cities will benefit.

Give me a break, "economic unit" is a meaningless marketing buzzword in this situation. If we hand a whole bunch of our air pasengers and flights to Calgary, how does Edmonton see a benefit in that? Building a train does not in any way ensure that we see a shared benefit, and does not guarantee that we will get our fair share of the economic pie, especially if we are not doing our due diligence in ensuring we keep our piece of the pie.

There is no bull#(*$ about a Calgary/Edmonton rivalry. We are in compeition with them, whether you personally like the idea or not. Every business that choses to set up shop in Calgary over Edmonton is a loss for Edmonton. Every business that moves from Edmonton to Calgary is an even bigger loss - we're still reeling from losing our head offices to Calgary after so many years. Do you think that we should just roll over and take it if the province hands them another advantage over us, pat them on the back and say "score one for the 'economic unit'?"

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 02:31 PM
^ RTA, this is exactly the type of thinking we should be getting away from. You see us as being in competition with Calgary and a train purely as a threat to our airport. Look at the bigger picture. As two squabbling cities both Calgary and Edmonton are going to find it much harder to compete in the greater business world, but if we 'connect' our two cities with HSR we essentially become an economic powerhouse with the potential for true growth. 'Integrated economic unit' is not a buzz word, but something much more important. It means you are turning two, one million markets focused more on fighting themselves than anything else into one market with 2.5 million (probably by the time this opens 3 million) people. Which one do you think investors would be more interested in?
Right now, especially in winter, these two cities are very isolated from each other and as such remain completely separate markets in many respects. With HSR this would change and marketing our combined strength to potential investors would become much easier.
Your argument in many ways reminds me of people in Europe who years ago fought against the EU as a concept for so long. Sure there are many differences, but my point is that while you may have to give up on some things by 'working as a team' you will ultimately always do better in business by working together, becoming bigger and stronger. As individual countries Europe would not be nearly as powerful and respected in the world as it is today. Only by 'integrating' their economies, building modern transportation links and leaving old rivalries behind was Europe able to become what it is today.

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 03:30 PM
For example, Edmonton may suddenly become much more attractive as a place to lease office space, as it is much cheaper than downtown Calgary but (if HSR exists) only a less than two hour train ride away, regardless of weather. In return, Calgary would benefit by having easier access to some of the research institutions based in Edmonton for example. It's a give and take, but undoubtedly both cities would stand to gain a lot.

Hilman
21-04-2009, 04:33 PM
^Sorry, but that is a lot of speculating when billions of public dollars being spent. That money would benefit Edmonton and Calgary a lot more if it was used for LRT and other infrastructure. I really don't see how we benefit from building a HSR. Do you honestly believe people are going to live in one city and work in another? Are they honestly going to ride 2 hours (or more) one way to go to work, a concert, sporting event, etc? Would you? I sure the hell wouldn't and I doubt many would add 4-5 hours a day to commute, especially when we have a tough enough time getting people to ride the bus for 30 minutes.

Lets leave the HSR for places like Springfield, Ogdenville, North Haverbrook, and Brockway as HSR is much too costly and provides little upside to either city.

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 04:52 PM
No, I don't expect people to commute daily... did I ever say that? Mutual economic benefits come in many forms. Mock all you want, that's what people did when the LRT was first proposed, but a survey has shown most people in Alberta are in favour of HSR (I'll have to dig that one out) and soon enough there will be enough people with a bit of vision to carry this thing out. Until then, lets just agree to disagree.

Hilman
21-04-2009, 05:11 PM
No, I don't expect people to commute daily... did I ever say that? Mutual economic benefits come in many forms. Mock all you want, that's what people did when the LRT was first proposed, but a survey has shown most people in Alberta are in favour of HSR (I'll have to dig that one out) and soon enough there will be enough people with a bit of vision to carry this thing out. Until then, lets just agree to disagree.

In post 79 you said:
"For example, Edmonton may suddenly become much more attractive as a place to lease office space, as it is much cheaper than downtown Calgary but (if HSR exists) only a less than two hour train ride away, regardless of weather. In return, Calgary would benefit by having easier access to some of the research institutions based in Edmonton for example. It's a give and take, but undoubtedly both cities would stand to gain a lot."

This sounds to me like you think people will commute, what exactly did you mean?

GizmoForMayor
21-04-2009, 05:29 PM
What I meant was that it would be possible for a company to have at least part of their workforce based up here and still be close to the epi-centre of the oil industry, for example. Obviously some employees would still have to go back and forth but not every day.

DrT
21-04-2009, 11:55 PM
Eventhough HSR may not be a viable project today, the point that Gizmo is making is absolutely correct. HSR would generate huge synergies for both cities with respect to business. The attractiveness of office space in downtown edmonton would dramatically increase. A company could have it's offices in Edmonton (next to government offices and departments, also at lower price than Calgary), but still have fast and easy access to face-to-face meetings with other businesses in Calgary. Selected employees could make the trip several times weekly, potentially leave at 9:00 am, be in Calgary before 11:00, meetings all day, leave at 4:00 pm.

This type of day trip is completely not practical by car (will kill 3 hours each way, probably 4+ with rush hour traffic, and waste an entire day travelling) and also pretty impractical by plane (1/2 hour cab ride to airport, wait in line to check-in and clear security, wait to board, taxi, 30 minute flight, taxi again, wait to deplane, another cab ride, probably kills about 3 hours each way as well, and it's not practical to spend 6 hours of your day travelling for a day meeting).

HSR provides the unique option of downtown to downtown service in about 90 minutes, making the day trip very practical to maintain face-to-face business contacts at a reasonable cost (assuming the step-right-on European style of train station and that HSR makes it sufficiently close to downtown Edmonton and doesn't dump passengers near 109 street).

HSR may not be a feasable project at this point, but it would be very foolish to suggest that their would not be major synergies developed for government and business interactions between the two cities.

Hilman
22-04-2009, 12:23 AM
Eventhough HSR may not be a viable project today, the point that Gizmo is making is absolutely correct. HSR would generate huge synergies for both cities with respect to business. The attractiveness of office space in downtown edmonton would dramatically increase. A company could have it's offices in Edmonton (next to government offices and departments, also at lower price than Calgary), but still have fast and easy access to face-to-face meetings with other businesses in Calgary. Selected employees could make the trip several times weekly, potentially leave at 9:00 am, be in Calgary before 11:00, meetings all day, leave at 4:00 pm.

This type of day trip is completely not practical by car (will kill 3 hours each way, probably 4+ with rush hour traffic, and waste an entire day travelling) and also pretty impractical by plane (1/2 hour cab ride to airport, wait in line to check-in and clear security, wait to board, taxi, 30 minute flight, taxi again, wait to deplane, another cab ride, probably kills about 3 hours each way as well, and it's not practical to spend 6 hours of your day travelling for a day meeting).

HSR provides the unique option of downtown to downtown service in about 90 minutes, making the day trip very practical to maintain face-to-face business contacts at a reasonable cost (assuming the step-right-on European style of train station and that HSR makes it sufficiently close to downtown Edmonton and doesn't dump passengers near 109 street).

HSR may not be a feasable project at this point, but it would be very foolish to suggest that their would not be major synergies developed for government and business interactions between the two cities.

Some estimates have HSR taking 2 hours from city centre to city centre as it would stop at both airports and in Red Deer. Now add the time it takes to wait in line to check-in and clear security, wait to board, 2 hour train ride, wait to disembark, another cab ride, etc you are not that much further ahead. Is spending billions of dollars of public money to save at most 30 minutes worth it? I would say no, use that money for other things such as LRT, trams, hybrid/electric buses, etc. instead of wasting billions on a project that few would actually use.

To really save money, have those companies you guys keep talking about use video conferencing. It will give them the face to face time without any of the traveling :p

And by the way, the typical flight time from YEG to YYC is 21 minutes and not 30 minutes.

grish
22-04-2009, 07:16 AM
i don't think clearing and security will be a part of the experience. also, if it is possible to have "fly through" program at the airport, it is possible to have one at the train. train boarding happends through at least 2 doors per car and a whole train can be loaded in manner of minutes. airplanes board through a single door and have long security and ticket checks. the significant difference, however, is what you do when on board. On a train, the moment you sit down is the moment you can start working, sleeping, reading a book. On the plane, you have to put things away, turn things off etc all in an uncomfortable seat. Bus is nearly as good as the train, but the speed and comfort isn't there. Driving--that's almost 7 hours out of your work day. The only thing that you can do while driving is talking on the phone, but that's not safe.

there are things that are just not possible by video conferencing.

DrT
22-04-2009, 08:40 AM
Some estimates have HSR taking 2 hours from city centre to city centre as it would stop at both airports and in Red Deer. Now add the time it takes to wait in line to check-in and clear security, wait to board, 2 hour train ride, wait to disembark, another cab ride, etc you are not that much further ahead. Is spending billions of dollars of public money to save at most 30 minutes worth it? I would say no, use that money for other things such as LRT, trams, hybrid/electric buses, etc. instead of wasting billions on a project that few would actually use.

To really save money, have those companies you guys keep talking about use video conferencing. It will give them the face to face time without any of the traveling :p

And by the way, the typical flight time from YEG to YYC is 21 minutes and not 30 minutes.

Actually, there is no security or check-in (hence the time savings). When I have taken the eurostar (with the exception of Paris-London route where you have to clear customs first) or other high-speeds in Europe, it is a simple matter of walking up to the platform and getting on the train (no more difficult than boarding LRT really) and takes about 30 seconds. There is no comparison to air travel.

That said, the money WOULD be better spent on LRT, etc. for the time being. But again, HSR is a very different beast than air travel and it's important to realize that.

PS. I take the Calgary-Edmonton flight very regulary and it takes about 30 minutes to load the plane and the flight is about 40 minutes including the taxi time required at both airports. Overall, it is not very quick, especially adding on security etc.

Hilman
22-04-2009, 09:20 AM
Some estimates have HSR taking 2 hours from city centre to city centre as it would stop at both airports and in Red Deer. Now add the time it takes to wait in line to check-in and clear security, wait to board, 2 hour train ride, wait to disembark, another cab ride, etc you are not that much further ahead. Is spending billions of dollars of public money to save at most 30 minutes worth it? I would say no, use that money for other things such as LRT, trams, hybrid/electric buses, etc. instead of wasting billions on a project that few would actually use.

To really save money, have those companies you guys keep talking about use video conferencing. It will give them the face to face time without any of the traveling :p

And by the way, the typical flight time from YEG to YYC is 21 minutes and not 30 minutes.

Actually, there is no security or check-in (hence the time savings). When I have taken the eurostar (with the exception of Paris-London route where you have to clear customs first) or other high-speeds in Europe, it is a simple matter of walking up to the platform and getting on the train (no more difficult than boarding LRT really) and takes about 30 seconds. There is no comparison to air travel.

That said, the money WOULD be better spent on LRT, etc. for the time being. But again, HSR is a very different beast than air travel and it's important to realize that.

PS. I take the Calgary-Edmonton flight very regulary and it takes about 30 minutes to load the plane and the flight is about 40 minutes including the taxi time required at both airports. Overall, it is not very quick, especially adding on security etc.

So it takes you 30 minutes to take a cab from downtown, 60 minutes to clear security/check-in, 40 minutes to get to YYC (fly/taxi/disembark). That is 2 hours and 10 minutes plus a cab ride to your destination. Do we really need a build a $5-10 billion HSR system to arrive at roughly the same time?

grish
22-04-2009, 09:32 AM
Some estimates have HSR taking 2 hours from city centre to city centre as it would stop at both airports and in Red Deer. Now add the time it takes to wait in line to check-in and clear security, wait to board, 2 hour train ride, wait to disembark, another cab ride, etc you are not that much further ahead. Is spending billions of dollars of public money to save at most 30 minutes worth it? I would say no, use that money for other things such as LRT, trams, hybrid/electric buses, etc. instead of wasting billions on a project that few would actually use.

To really save money, have those companies you guys keep talking about use video conferencing. It will give them the face to face time without any of the traveling :p

And by the way, the typical flight time from YEG to YYC is 21 minutes and not 30 minutes.

Actually, there is no security or check-in (hence the time savings). When I have taken the eurostar (with the exception of Paris-London route where you have to clear customs first) or other high-speeds in Europe, it is a simple matter of walking up to the platform and getting on the train (no more difficult than boarding LRT really) and takes about 30 seconds. There is no comparison to air travel.

That said, the money WOULD be better spent on LRT, etc. for the time being. But again, HSR is a very different beast than air travel and it's important to realize that.

PS. I take the Calgary-Edmonton flight very regulary and it takes about 30 minutes to load the plane and the flight is about 40 minutes including the taxi time required at both airports. Overall, it is not very quick, especially adding on security etc.

So it takes you 30 minutes to take a cab from downtown, 60 minutes to clear security/check-in, 40 minutes to get to YYC (fly/taxi/disembark). That is 2 hours and 10 minutes plus a cab ride to your destination. Do we really need a build a $5-10 billion HSR system to arrive at roughly the same time?
your forgot getting from the airport--another at least 30 minutes and possibly collection of luggage (another 10 min or so). train offers about 40 min in savings. that's 120 min by train and 160 min by plane. plane is, what, 30% longer? not to mention the comfort while you're on board and higher reliability of taking the train (fewer weather-related delays including getting to the station).

DrT
22-04-2009, 09:41 AM
So it takes you 30 minutes to take a cab from downtown, 60 minutes to clear security/check-in, 40 minutes to get to YYC (fly/taxi/disembark). That is 2 hours and 10 minutes plus a cab ride to your destination. Do we really need a build a $5-10 billion HSR system to arrive at roughly the same time?

No, I agree with you that for the time being, that ammount of expendature is probably not justified. However, I think if you take an honest look at the benefits, especially the synergy between downtown Calgary and Edmonton, we're actually a lot closer to it being feasable than what you think.

2 hours and 10 minutes each way to fly is possible, but that's assuming everything goes perfectly to plan, especially assuming the plane takes off on time, which often doesn't happen, especially in the winter. In reality, you'd probably average about 5 hours travel time both ways, especially if you get stuck in a little rush hour traffic/gridlock getting to or from the airport (air travel is a real hassle in my opinion, and I fly a lot).

HSR COULD - notice that I said COULD - be a lot more effective providing that you avoided long stops at other locations and kept the travel time by train close to 90 minutes (which is very possible at 220-240 km/h). Also critical would be that the train line terminates very close to the downtown core and connects to the downtown pedway systems (probably easy to do in Calgary, gonna be more difficult here in Edmonton since there's no longer a ROW from high level to the core). If these conditions were met, the reduction of trip time of 5 hours to 3 hours would make frequent (multiple per week) day trips for business a lot more feasable, since people wouldn't get stuck in hotels overnight and have to spend time away from their families.

Hilman
22-04-2009, 09:55 AM
Some estimates have HSR taking 2 hours from city centre to city centre as it would stop at both airports and in Red Deer. Now add the time it takes to wait in line to check-in and clear security, wait to board, 2 hour train ride, wait to disembark, another cab ride, etc you are not that much further ahead. Is spending billions of dollars of public money to save at most 30 minutes worth it? I would say no, use that money for other things such as LRT, trams, hybrid/electric buses, etc. instead of wasting billions on a project that few would actually use.

To really save money, have those companies you guys keep talking about use video conferencing. It will give them the face to face time without any of the traveling :p

And by the way, the typical flight time from YEG to YYC is 21 minutes and not 30 minutes.

Actually, there is no security or check-in (hence the time savings). When I have taken the eurostar (with the exception of Paris-London route where you have to clear customs first) or other high-speeds in Europe, it is a simple matter of walking up to the platform and getting on the train (no more difficult than boarding LRT really) and takes about 30 seconds. There is no comparison to air travel.

That said, the money WOULD be better spent on LRT, etc. for the time being. But again, HSR is a very different beast than air travel and it's important to realize that.

PS. I take the Calgary-Edmonton flight very regulary and it takes about 30 minutes to load the plane and the flight is about 40 minutes including the taxi time required at both airports. Overall, it is not very quick, especially adding on security etc.

So it takes you 30 minutes to take a cab from downtown, 60 minutes to clear security/check-in, 40 minutes to get to YYC (fly/taxi/disembark). That is 2 hours and 10 minutes plus a cab ride to your destination. Do we really need a build a $5-10 billion HSR system to arrive at roughly the same time?
your forgot getting from the airport--another at least 30 minutes and possibly collection of luggage (another 10 min or so). train offers about 40 min in savings. that's 120 min by train and 160 min by plane. plane is, what, 30% longer? not to mention the comfort while you're on board and higher reliability of taking the train (fewer weather-related delays including getting to the station).

I was being generous with my estimated times, it shouldn't take you 30 minutes to take a cab to the airport. I can drive from 167 ave and 72 st to YEG in 30-35 minutes. It also shouldn't take you an hour to clear security/board. I also doubt it takes 30 minutes to get downtown from YYC (more like 15-20 minutes).

25 minutes to cab to YEG
45 minutes to clear security/check-in
40 minutes to taxi/fly/taxi

Total 1 hour 50 minutes plus 20 minute cab ride is 2 hours 10 minutes. That is a whopping 10 minute savings. They should call it MSR.... (medium speed rail).

Note, most people who are going for a business meeting (not overnight) would not require any baggage other than a carry on.

grish
22-04-2009, 10:54 AM
no you were not being generous. cabs don't appear out of thin air the moment you think "cab". the driving does not happen in the middle of the night with no other vehicles around. Count one hour total for transportation between downtowns and the airports, one hour flying including taxi, boarding, deplaning, and at least 30 minutes for check-in and security if you are going to use the fly through option, and possibly 10-15 min for luggage collection . more if you do not. that is more like between 2.5 and 3 hours closer to 3.

A train gives you 30 minutes to get to and from and board at both ends. the rest is riding the train and possibly relaxing, doing work, having lunch, running a meeting for 90 min. That is 2 hours by train including having some 1.5 hours of work done. That cannot be done on the plane.

and for the second time in a row you have generously placed less emphasis on getting from CALGARY airport to anywhere.

RTA
22-04-2009, 12:08 PM
^ RTA, this is exactly the type of thinking we should be getting away from. You see us as being in competition with Calgary and a train purely as a threat to our airport. Look at the bigger picture. As two squabbling cities both Calgary and Edmonton are going to find it much harder to compete in the greater business world, but if we 'connect' our two cities with HSR we essentially become an economic powerhouse with the potential for true growth. 'Integrated economic unit' is not a buzz word, but something much more important. It means you are turning two, one million markets focused more on fighting themselves than anything else into one market with 2.5 million (probably by the time this opens 3 million) people. Which one do you think investors would be more interested in?
Right now, especially in winter, these two cities are very isolated from each other and as such remain completely separate markets in many respects. With HSR this would change and marketing our combined strength to potential investors would become much easier.
Your argument in many ways reminds me of people in Europe who years ago fought against the EU as a concept for so long. Sure there are many differences, but my point is that while you may have to give up on some things by 'working as a team' you will ultimately always do better in business by working together, becoming bigger and stronger. As individual countries Europe would not be nearly as powerful and respected in the world as it is today. Only by 'integrating' their economies, building modern transportation links and leaving old rivalries behind was Europe able to become what it is today.


For example, Edmonton may suddenly become much more attractive as a place to lease office space, as it is much cheaper than downtown Calgary but (if HSR exists) only a less than two hour train ride away, regardless of weather. In return, Calgary would benefit by having easier access to some of the research institutions based in Edmonton for example. It's a give and take, but undoubtedly both cities would stand to gain a lot.

I'd love to know what basis you have for this speculation that one train line will combine our economies into a cooperative one. You're saying that a passenger train between our cities will do what a major highway, heavy air traffic, freight rail service, and a previously failed attempt at passenger rail service have so far failed to do?

And people accuse me of being a utopian dreamer. :rolleyes:

kcantor
22-04-2009, 12:16 PM
no you were not being generous. cabs don't appear out of thin air the moment you think "cab". the driving does not happen in the middle of the night with no other vehicles around. Count one hour total for transportation between downtowns and the airports, one hour flying including taxi, boarding, deplaning, and at least 30 minutes for check-in and security if you are going to use the fly through option, and possibly 10-15 min for luggage collection . more if you do not. that is more like between 2.5 and 3 hours closer to 3.

A train gives you 30 minutes to get to and from and board at both ends. the rest is riding the train and possibly relaxing, doing work, having lunch, running a meeting for 90 min. That is 2 hours by train including having some 1.5 hours of work done. That cannot be done on the plane.

and for the second time in a row you have generously placed less emphasis on getting from CALGARY airport to anywhere.
using the cp route and accepting all of van hornes related recommendations would result in a 2 hour 10 minute train trip by their estimates. so a ten minute walk or cab ride to and from the station and getting there fifteen minute prior to departure and your train trip isn't much faster than that 2.5 - 3 hour alternative you insist gives you so much less "work time".

and it should be noted that you are advocating an alternative that will have a drastically reduced choice of departure times than is available by air or bus or car so your trip could well be quite a bit less flexible and less convenient as a result when compared to some of those other modes, not more. that's not to say it won't work for a portion of your target market, just noting that that market is not nearly as large or as well served by hsr compared to the options they already have as you would like it to be. and wishing it or fudging the differences won't make it so. and that's without getting into how many of those trips start/end on the south side of the river if you are leaving/returning home (or from nisku) where yeg is 5 - 12 minutes away to catch a plane and downtown is 25 - 35 to catch your train.

GizmoForMayor
22-04-2009, 03:16 PM
The CP route is just one option and unlikely to be ultimately used. Exactly because travel time is such an important part of the HSR equation the Greenfield option will almost certainly be chosen. This will make the trip significantly faster than the CP route and thereby also significantly faster than both driving or flying.

kcantor
22-04-2009, 08:24 PM
The CP route is just one option and unlikely to be ultimately used. Exactly because travel time is such an important part of the HSR equation the Greenfield option will almost certainly be chosen. This will make the trip significantly faster than the CP route and thereby also significantly faster than both driving or flying.
although to be fair to the cp route, it is half the cost of the greenfield route isn't it?

or would it be more accurate to say that "moving up" to the greenfield route would probably cost twice as much as using the cp route for hsr? that's a pretty substantial upcharge wouldn't you think?

or to quote van horne "Based on all of the above, the CPR alternative has significant advantages over the Greenfield alternatives [which might reduce the time up to 23 minutes on a picture perfect day] and particularly the Greenfield Electric alternative [which would reduce the time by up to another 9]". the "non-italic" comments are mine, not van horne's.

Edmonton PRT
22-04-2009, 09:26 PM
I distinctly remember me and a friend on mine, driving his dad's 1976 deep blue, supercharged Aston Martin Vantage in full european tune (right hand drive of course) from Calgary to Edmonton in 110 minutes.

Waaaaayyyyyy better than HSR will ever be... :cool:

http://www.gullwingsearch.com/images/76V8011.jpg
Not the same car but very close if you add fog lights, grill and racing stripes.