Are Private Operations on the Northeast Corridor the Means to an End, or Just an End?

New Haven Station

» Without a commitment of more federal funds for improvement, an initiative to transfer rights to private entities to operate trains along the Northeast Corridor would not accomplish much.

In order to take advantage of the roadways effectively, bus drivers — not to mention car drivers — do not need to take possession of said roads. Indeed, they need only to be in possession of a vehicle that can navigate along the streets and be able to pay for fuel, part of whose cost returns to cover many of the expenses required to build and maintain the roads. Many different vehicles, owned by many different people or organizations, can share the roads, usually without problems. Sometimes, there are accidents, which can be mostly avoided through proper design of the roadways, and there is sometimes congestion, which can be relieved through road fees. Fundamentally, the system works: There are vehicle owners,

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Amtrak Unveils Ambitious Northeast Corridor Plan, But It Would Take 30 Years to be Realized

Amtrak High Speed Rail Plan

» Unfunded, $117.5 billion proposal would speed trains from Boston to Washington in just 3h23. Amtrak wants a full new corridor along the entire line, including a new inland route through Connecticut.

After months of sitting on the sidelines as states and regional agencies promoted major new high-speed rail investments, Amtrak has finally announced what it hopes to achieve over the next thirty years: A brand-new, 426-mile, two-track corridor running from Boston to Washington, bringing true high-speed rail to the Northeast Corridor for the first time.

The report, released today at a press conference in Philadelphia, suggests investing $4.7 billion annually over the next 25 years on the creation of a route that would allow trains to speed between New York and Washington in 96 minutes and between New York and Boston in just 84 minutes. The line would run along a corridor that could stretch in

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What Would It Take to Fully Invest in the Northeast Corridor?

Philadelphia Alignment Penn NEC Analysis

» Penn Design group proposes almost $100 billion investment between Washington and Boston. Amtrak confirms it’s evaluating constructing another Hudson River tunnel.

If you thought California’s more than forty billion dollar plan to connect San Francisco and Los Angeles with high-speed rail was an unreasonably large investment, you’ll be doubled-over by what a University of Pennsylvania student group has proposed for the Northeast Corridor: a $98.1 billion spending spree that would transform America’s most productive region by speeding commutes between Boston and Washington to just 3h15.

The plan advocates the construction of new rail tunnels through downtown Philadelphia and Baltimore, a bypass around Wilmington, and, get this, a twenty-mile tunnel under the Long Island Sound from Ronkonkoma to New Haven. Trains would average 155 mph on the trip. These investments, the students suggest, would be enough to triple ridership on the intercity rail network by 2040. I wouldn’t

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The Site / The Fight

by Yonah Freemark

yfreemark (at) thetransportpolitic (dot) com

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