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  • Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World


    Please discuss it here.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  • #2
    Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

    I live in Southern California and a rail system is very much needed. It is quite sad how far behind the U.S is when it comes to a high speed rail system.

    I have been to Japan twice and it is amazing how solid the rail system is.
    Last edited by Brisal73; 02-18-2011, 05:53 AM.

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    • #3
      Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

      Hard to believe that alot of tiny countries in Europe and Asia are already on this. We could've used a high speed rail system like years ago. Amtrak is a slowpo joke peoples!

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      • #4
        Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

        It's one of the very few ideas Obama has that I like.
        High speed rail all through Europe makes so much easier.
        Mark

        Disney parks and art, movies, music, more... Over 1, 500 Posts!
        www.InsightsandSounds.blogspot.com

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        • #5
          Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

          The one on the map that most caught my eye was the L.A.-Vegas leg. I have heard rumors of this for years. I agree with all above, the rail industry has definitely been a thing of the past for the US.

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          • #6
            Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

            I love trains, especially those made by the company I work for. However the passenger trains currently in use in the US do not make money.

            The governor was right to not take this initial money for the train as everyone knows any government project will cost twice the projected price. So where would the extra money come from? Florida taxpayers. And where would the yearly upkeep come from? Ticket prices would have to be very high to cover the cost, so FL taxpayers would be on the hook for that too.

            Its unfortunate, but passenger rail service does not make money in the US. The ones in Europe makes sense as they have many small countries linked together, and their governments either own or subsidize the rail service there. Does anyone here know the tax rates in those countries with high-speed rail service? I'm pretty sure no one in the US wants to pay those tax rates. Anytime there has been any talk of starting an income tax in FL, it has been shot down quick.

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            • #7
              Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

              Based on where it will stop like WDW, International Drive, and the Airport, it appears to only be designed for tourism. This is insufficient to sustain a train service. It is suicidal for the state to only cater to tourism with this expensive train set. They need to figure out to better service its citizens.

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              • #8
                Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                Originally posted by Goofy173 View Post
                I love trains, especially those made by the company I work for. However the passenger trains currently in use in the US do not make money.

                The governor was right to not take this initial money for the train as everyone knows any government project will cost twice the projected price. So where would the extra money come from? Florida taxpayers. And where would the yearly upkeep come from? Ticket prices would have to be very high to cover the cost, so FL taxpayers would be on the hook for that too.

                Its unfortunate, but passenger rail service does not make money in the US. The ones in Europe makes sense as they have many small countries linked together, and their governments either own or subsidize the rail service there. Does anyone here know the tax rates in those countries with high-speed rail service? I'm pretty sure no one in the US wants to pay those tax rates. Anytime there has been any talk of starting an income tax in FL, it has been shot down quick.
                I agree with you. These high speed trains don't make sense in the U.S. It sounds good, but doesn't make any money and will only hurt the state financially. Amtrak trains in the Northeast are expensive, slow, and losing millions of dollars every year. We are not like Europe and Asia where population is high and countries are small. We are too spread out, and the most efficient way to travel right now is by car. If I was the government I would rather have this money go towards research and development of efficient cars and transportation infrastructure.

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                • #9
                  Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                  Comparing USA to other countries on this issue isn't appropriate because USA is the only country that has privately-owned and run airlines...if a railway were so smart, why hasn't the private sector already pursued it?

                  Why should we go into deeper debt just to run the privately-owned airlines (and jobs) out of business?

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                  • #10
                    Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                    Originally posted by Goofy173 View Post
                    I love trains, especially those made by the company I work for. However the passenger trains currently in use in the US do not make money.

                    The governor was right to not take this initial money for the train as everyone knows any government project will cost twice the projected price. So where would the extra money come from? Florida taxpayers. And where would the yearly upkeep come from? Ticket prices would have to be very high to cover the cost, so FL taxpayers would be on the hook for that too.

                    Its unfortunate, but passenger rail service does not make money in the US. The ones in Europe makes sense as they have many small countries linked together, and their governments either own or subsidize the rail service there. Does anyone here know the tax rates in those countries with high-speed rail service? I'm pretty sure no one in the US wants to pay those tax rates. Anytime there has been any talk of starting an income tax in FL, it has been shot down quick.
                    Originally posted by HBKRocco View Post
                    I agree with you. These high speed trains don't make sense in the U.S. It sounds good, but doesn't make any money and will only hurt the state financially. Amtrak trains in the Northeast are expensive, slow, and losing millions of dollars every year. We are not like Europe and Asia where population is high and countries are small. We are too spread out, and the most efficient way to travel right now is by car. If I was the government I would rather have this money go towards research and development of efficient cars and transportation infrastructure.
                    Originally posted by vnormth View Post
                    Comparing USA to other countries on this issue isn't appropriate because USA is the only country that has privately-owned and run airlines...if a railway were so smart, why hasn't the private sector already pursued it?

                    Why should we go into deeper debt just to run the privately-owned airlines (and jobs) out of business?
                    COMPLETELY agree with all of these statements. I think that the idea for high speed rail sounds good, but honestly, the proposed high speed rail projects are, as i like to call them "railroads to nowhere". first of all, the government should not be involved in the railroad business at all. just look at amtrak, a government owned railroad corporation. the PROPOSED speeds of those trains are supposed to b over 100mph, but the reality is that those amtrak trains rarely reach those speeds and have a hard time even reaching speeds of 80 mph. why? because the railroads that the trains run on r very old and cant handle very high speeds, making them incredibly inefficient. Secondly, enough people do not ride trains that would warrant the building of a high speed railroad at this point in time. According to some studies, the cost to the tax payer of current trains is $462 PER PERSON!! y? because hardly anyone rides trains. But finally, the BIGGEST reason why we should NOT be building a high speed rail right now is because we simply DO NOT HAVE THE MONEY. Why is obama so intent on spending so much money we dont have? we have an ENORMOUS deficit and a huge debt that will consume most of our GDP w/ in the next 10 years. spending billions of money we dont have at a huge cost to the taxpayer will not help our country in the long run. Again, another unintended consequence that the government fails to see.
                    Last edited by DlandresortCalifan; 02-18-2011, 10:39 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                      The dirty little secret that is rarely mentioned is that in Germany and Switzerland -- the most efficiently operated trains in Eruope are privately held and not subsidized through taxes. These would also be the ones to emulate. And I remember how awful the trains in other countries which subsidized their networks were.

                      In other words, in the countries where the system is cost-effective, efficient, and economical, you pay the actual cost of a fare. They are more economical in Europe because the gas prices are through the roof -- I remember being shocked in Switzerland that our price per gallon was their price per liter.

                      Here, however, people will not ride a train unless it is cheaper or more convenient than driving a car. I don't believe that we should be subsidizing a system which is incapable of generating a profit. Until we see a shift of economic factors, I think in many instances, a train could be quite a dud.

                      And NO, I'm NOT anti-train. I love trains, and was very impressed with the trains in Germany and Switzerland (not so much in Italy or Netherlands, though). They were clean, efficient, and 2nd class on a DB ICE train rivals 1st class on an airplane. I'd love to see the days when we are capable of having a high-speed rail network across the United States, and I love taking trains even for the scenic views.

                      But we simply can't toss aside the economics of the situation beyond the initial investment of money -- on some rail lines in the US, the cost of a fare exceeds the cost of taking a taxi the same distance. And no, I don't see this situation as analogous to the formation of the Interstate Highway System.

                      As far as Amtrak goes -- it's an utter joke. Amtrak trains are not high speed, and share trackage with freight rail on private lanes. Amtrak operates on an easement on these lines, meaning that often times freight travel is given priority over passenger travel. It's a joke.
                      Last edited by The Shadoe; 02-18-2011, 02:11 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                        I enjoy reading the comments about how heavily subsidized the European rail system is, and so it is a bad model to follow.

                        Guess what?

                        The US highway and interstate system is completely government subsidized. The US trucking industry would be a shadow of itself if it actually had to pay more than the token fraction of the road construction and maintenance costs it currently pays. Personal driving is subsidized in the same way (and more).

                        The cost of petroleum in the US is effectively government subsidized.

                        The US air transportation system is government subsidized.

                        At one point in time the railroads in this country were massively subsidized.

                        If we are going to object to government subsidies for transportation systems, then lets object to all of them and really level the playing field.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                          States are broke, Fed is more than broke, spending is out of control and needs to be reigned in to reasonable levels.

                          If high speed rail makes sense it should be a private not government effort.

                          If this kind of transportation made sense maybe Disney would have built the monorail extension at WDW.

                          A ticket on Southwest costs less than a ticket on Amtrak which would be much less than high speed rail and you get the pelasure of meeting a TSA agent up close and personal for no extra charge

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                          • #14
                            Why High-Speed Trains Don't Make Sense - Newsweek
                            Early to rise, early to bed, makes a man healthy... but socially dead.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                              Originally posted by wulfblat View Post
                              I enjoy reading the comments about how heavily subsidized the European rail system is, and so it is a bad model to follow.

                              Guess what?

                              The US highway and interstate system is completely government subsidized. The US trucking industry would be a shadow of itself if it actually had to pay more than the token fraction of the road construction and maintenance costs it currently pays. Personal driving is subsidized in the same way (and more).
                              .

                              Roads and high speed rail are not a good comparison. Everything from city buses and garbage trucks, to passenger cars and 18 wheel freight haulers use the roads that our tax dollars pay for. Roads are a universal service that anyone can use. Mom, Dad and the kids, along with Walmart. Not to mention that Walmart's competitor Target uses the roads with out being at a disadvantage to its larger rival. Our military along with law enforcement and emergency services all use our roads. Roads cost pennies on the dollar when compared to high speed rail.

                              High speed rail on the other hand is designed to do one thing and one thing only, move passengers from one specific point to another. Freight can not be moved on it, nor can a military transport. High speed rail doesn't bring the police to a crime scene or paramedics to a crash.

                              If all the government were doing is laying track that anyone could use, I probably wouldn't have a problem with it, but what we are really doing is spending billions of dollars for a system that a rather small fraction of the population will ever actually use.

                              I live in Arizona and I have no plans to travel to Florida. Why should I pay for a transportation system that is only designed to service a niche market? IE tourist going to Disney World.

                              Additionally these systems when implemented are almost never what was promised. Here in the Phoenix area we voted for a thing called the metro rail system. (obviously not high speed but you get the idea) The system we were promised was supposed to share the freeway access and travel at speeds in excess of 50 miles per hour. What we got was little more than a street car that travels in the middle of major city streets, and never goes faster than 30 miles per hour. As a result trains run half empty most of the time. The system is losing money hand over fist and they have actually had to cut back the hours that the train runs. You better be on your way home by 9pm or you may miss the last train!

                              Doug
                              Pain is temporary, Film is forever!

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                              • #16
                                Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                                Originally posted by Brisal73 View Post
                                I live in Southern California and a rail system is very much needed. It is quite sad how far behind the U.S is when it comes to a high speed rail system.
                                That's true. But the answer isn't high speed rail. The answer is to make the existign rail system more efficient. If current rail is inefficient, high speed rail won't be either.

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                                • #17
                                  Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                                  It's disapointing to see the writer of the piece ( who I like when he talks Disney ) show that he is clueless about spending, debt, high speed rail and the fact that these trains are a loser all the way around. High speed rail is a disaster, a truly horrible idea when the USA is $14 TRILLION in debt.
                                  Where does the money come from? Who is going to pay for the system once it gets running and it loses money like Amtrak does?

                                  I doubt that Werner ever thought of these questions or even cares. All Werner knows is that the Govt is sending money that comes from the money fairy and that will create magical jobs for all...problems all solved!

                                  I know....lets get the Fed Gov to send all of us a $million bucks each so we will all have money!!!!!! Problem solved!!

                                  Disney fans tend to be liberals who live in the would of fantasty. They have a hard time breaking down real numbers and real costs...but they really know what pins to trade for while zipping thru Fantasyland.

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                                  • #18
                                    Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                                    Not to completely derail this thread (no pun intended), but what I find amusing is that roughly half the posters in this thread have made only one post, which leads me to assume its just one person flooding a thread.


                                    Back on topic, I'll keep my viewpoint simple (don't care for politics):

                                    Excellent Concept that has gone the way of the Los Angeles Alweg Monorail. What is needed is Walt's optimism and persistence, something which has sadly died along with the man, and long gone in today's world. It may be a joke, but some risks are needed to be taken, which can prove to be a success in the long run, despite initial cost.

                                    And as for Cali, people seem to forget that the LA-SF flight corridor is rather busy.
                                    Please...don't call me simmer, call me Mike Folf.
                                    I am a Canis Lupus Vulpes Americanis Califius, otherwise known as a Californian Folf.


                                    "Cool shades, Mike!"

                                    Art Tweet Comic Tube

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                                    • #19
                                      Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                                      Originally posted by Beaumandy View Post
                                      I doubt that Werner ever thought of these questions or even cares. All Werner knows is that the Govt is sending money that comes from the money fairy and that will create magical jobs for all...problems all solved!
                                      The article started off with an introduction that included both sides of the issue. In fact, I opened with a quote from Florida Gov. Rick Scott.

                                      The rest of the article dealt with Florida's high-speed rail plan, its history, a look at actual high-speed rail in Germany, and a glimpse of Siemens' public display to promote their consortium. Yes, the article dealt more with the plan and its justification than with costs or politics.

                                      I approached the article from a perspective that I felt would be of interest to Disney fans. I included artwork showing the proposed station at Walt Disney World that, to my knowledge, has not been posted on other Disney fan websites or blogs. My original outline included a several paragraphs speculating about how the high-speed rail could become part of the new version of Disney's Magical Express, but I omitted this from the published article.

                                      From the outset, I decided I didn't want to get bogged down in the politics of the issue. There are plenty of passionate arguments on both sides, and plenty of places to read those arguments online.

                                      I can see both sides of this issue. I'm quite aware that public transportation projects are costly and never pay their own way in the long run. However, transportation is vital to every country. Regardless of the type of transportation (air, local rail, intercity rail, local roads, interstate highways, urban transit, etc.), it requires government involvement.

                                      My own opinion is that passenger rail improvements are vital in heavily populated parts of the East Coast, both for downtown-to-downtown services and to feed New York City's overburdened JFK and LaGuardia airports and Boston's Logan Airport (freeing up slots for longer flights). There's just no economically practical way to add more urban freeways or more runway capacity.

                                      It's much harder to justify the Tampa-Orlando plan. I had several discussions with people at the Florida Rail Ventures exhibit, and I wasn't satisfied with the answers. It sounds good on the surface to run tracks down the center of I-4, but that raises the whole question of how to deal with freeway overpasses, considering the overhead power supply lines that electric trains require. The solution is likely to be very costly because the power supply lines and overpasses cannot occupy the same space. And the estimate for how many riders the system would attract seemed to be based on what it would take to economically justify the system rather than on quantifiable demand.

                                      Now I'll get a bit political. It seems politically naive how Gov. Scott unilaterally pulled the plug, without even getting support from his own party. You can do that when you're a corporate CEO, but that's not how elected government works.
                                      Last edited by Werner Weiss; 05-11-2011, 08:18 AM. Reason: to fix a typo
                                      Werner Weiss
                                      Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

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                                      • #20
                                        Re: Feb. 18, 2011: The Fastest Ride at Walt Disney World

                                        Originally posted by Werner Weiss View Post
                                        However, transportation is vital to every country. Regardless of the type of transportation (air, local rail, intercity rail, local roads, interstate highways, urban transit, etc.), it requires government involvement.
                                        in what capacity would it involve government? private companies could (and should if it is ever done) get involved in high speed rail. i say that government needs to stay out of the way, they just make things worse. Also i think the point that beaumandy is trying to make is that EVEN IF it is vital, it doesnt mean that we should go spending the money to build it because we simply DO NOT have the money. building it is financially irresponsible. it is not imperative that we build a high speed rail right at this very second. it makes no sense to push our country in even FURTHER debt. high speed rail isnt THAT vital to our country's survival.

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