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DFW: IH-30 alignment recommended for possible future rail line

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See page 87 in the link below. See pages prior to page 87 for the alignments considered in the universe of alternatives

They are recommending the path of least resistance, which is along IH-30. Of course this is no surprise. On the plus side, the alignment is very straight. There will be some complications getting through the interchanges at SH 161 and SH 360, so some alternatives are shown in the map.

The study has also limited the technology options to traditional high speed rail and hyperloop.

I thought the southernmost blue option on page 86 would be better since the Arlington station would be closer to the stadiums and Six Flags. In addition, the abandoned baseball stadium would be an ideal station site.

Of course this project would be prohibitively expensive under normal conditions, and also have low ridership like all other rail lines in DFW. But in the new world of the federal government wanting to dump piles of money into public transit regardless of ridership, we can't rule out that this can actually move forward. However, the Biden "infrastructure" plan seems to have little or no money specifically earmarked for high speed rail or similar technologies.


--- Quote from: Max Concrete ---The study has also limited the technology options to traditional high speed rail and hyperloop.
--- End quote ---

That's a really stupid choice on their part. It appears they're only mapping out a regional rail system to hop between Dallas and Fort Worth. That's not nearly a far enough distance for a true high speed rail line, particularly if there are any stops at all in between. Even with a higher speed conventional rail system it takes a good amount of distance just to get to cruising speeds over 100mph. True high speed trains running at current cutting edge speeds of 200mph (or over 300kph) only reach those speeds running significant distances in rural areas between cities. Any stops along the way require their own distances to slow down and stop and then get back up to speed again.

I'm not the slightest bit optimistic Elon Musk's Hyperloop thing is ever going to get into commercial production. Aside from the insane costs to build it the thing is UGLY as hell. The thing looks like an elevated massive oil pipeline. I can just imagine the public revolts against a hyperloop line being built through an urban or suburban neighborhood (particularly any place with high property values). Most people are used to trains having things like windows. Riding in a hyperloop train would be a bit like traveling in a submarine. I can't see anyone with the slightest bit of claustrophobia wanting to ride in a hyperloop. I think the best case scenario for a Hyperloop would be building city to city lines where the stations are located on the city outskirts (like most airports). I see zero chance for one being built between Dallas and Fort Worth. The train would never get up to the hyped speeds. It would be like riding on an ordinary subway train that seems like it's underground when it's really above ground.

As for President Biden's "infrastructure" plan I think the thing is DOA unless they can work out some kind of compromise with GOP lawmakers. That doesn't seem likely at all. The GOP wants a much lower cost plan and far more of the emphasis on roads and bridges. The Biden plan is just all over the place, such as the plan to build out Broadband Internet all over rural areas. Residential Internet and phone access is a giant mess of many companies covering their own pieces of territory. And even if such a rural high speed network can be fully built out it would be a big waste of money. Small towns and rural areas are literally dying off. Young adults don't want to move to small towns for multiple obvious reasons and many businesses have their own cut-off point for city/town size requirements for them to build locations there.

Stephane Dumas:
Why this reminds me of  "Supertrain" or "Monorail", the Simpsons one?

Plutonic Panda:
HSR seems reasonable between Fort Worth and Dallas. If solely for the purposes of express trains between the two cities then I can see this being feasible. Yes many rail lines have low ridership in DFW but that is because Texas has a horrible mass transit system in general. It will take more lines and increase bus service to induce more ridership. One stop in Arlington would be okay as long as the station is directly in downtown and not on the freeway.

With that said, the fact this study includes hyperloop as an alternative makes me think this project is decades away. I suspect we’ll have private real estate in space for sale by the time we see a real hyperloop network anywhere.

Considering acceleration and deceleration from low to high speeds, wouldn’t having an intermediate stop in Arlington reduce the potential for such train to reach true higher speeds? Not against it, but would not work for high speed.


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