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Author Topic: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel  (Read 60092 times)

Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #75 on: July 08, 2013, 12:07:05 PM »

It's a new summer with some new musings on the Bering Strait Rail Tunnel. This Moscow Times article, primarily about $13.6 billion of upgrades to the Russian rail system, includes thoughts that construction might not begin until after 2030, and that a "if you build the tunnel first, then they will build the railroads to it" strategy should be employed:

Quote
President Vladimir Putin at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum at the end of June .... said the state would unseal the National Welfare Fund to allocate 450 billion rubles ($13.6 billion) on three infrastructure projects, including the construction of a high-speed rail line from Moscow to Kazan, a Central Ring Road beltway that is to appear around the capital by 2020 and the modernization of the Trans Siberian Railroad and its tributary, the Baikal-Amur Mainline ....
While the future of the Trans-Siberian and BAM is unclear, another mega-project that could result in a rail link appearing across continents continues to be discussed ....
During the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum last year, Russian Railways president Vladimir Yakunin said the project to extend a railway line to Kamchatka and then to build a tunnel across the Bering Strait could be completed "in not a very distant future." He also said at another conference last year that the final decision to start the project could be made within 3 to 5 years.
The strategy of railroad development up to the year 2030 approved by the Russian government mentions the Bering tunnel, but the plans state that it could be built after 2030 ....
Fyodor Soloview, the head of Interbering
, a private company created to promote Bering tunnel construction, said it could be built as a separate project.
"The tunnel could start to be built first, using money provided by international development funds. The railroads connecting it to mainlines in Russia, the U.S. and Canada would then follow and could be laid on the gravel dug out from the seabed," he said.
Soloview also said that if investment was not first made in the tunnel, it could take another generation before railroads came both from Alaska and Russia to the Bering Strait.

Other than Soloview and his website, no musings about a Bering Strait Rail Tunnel from the Alaska/Canada side of the Strait.
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Pete from Boston

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #76 on: July 08, 2013, 06:31:40 PM »

It's a new summer with some new musings on the Bering Strait Rail Tunnel. This Moscow Times article, primarily about $13.6 billion of upgrades to the Russian rail system, includes thoughts that construction might not begin until after 2030, and that a "if you build the tunnel first, then they will build the railroads to it" strategy should be employed:

Quote
President Vladimir Putin at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum at the end of June .... said the state would unseal the National Welfare Fund to allocate 450 billion rubles ($13.6 billion) on three infrastructure projects, including the construction of a high-speed rail line from Moscow to Kazan, a Central Ring Road beltway that is to appear around the capital by 2020 and the modernization of the Trans Siberian Railroad and its tributary, the Baikal-Amur Mainline ....
While the future of the Trans-Siberian and BAM is unclear, another mega-project that could result in a rail link appearing across continents continues to be discussed ....
During the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum last year, Russian Railways president Vladimir Yakunin said the project to extend a railway line to Kamchatka and then to build a tunnel across the Bering Strait could be completed "in not a very distant future." He also said at another conference last year that the final decision to start the project could be made within 3 to 5 years.
The strategy of railroad development up to the year 2030 approved by the Russian government mentions the Bering tunnel, but the plans state that it could be built after 2030 ....
Fyodor Soloview, the head of Interbering
, a private company created to promote Bering tunnel construction, said it could be built as a separate project.
"The tunnel could start to be built first, using money provided by international development funds. The railroads connecting it to mainlines in Russia, the U.S. and Canada would then follow and could be laid on the gravel dug out from the seabed," he said.
Soloview also said that if investment was not first made in the tunnel, it could take another generation before railroads came both from Alaska and Russia to the Bering Strait.

Other than Soloview and his website, no musings about a Bering Strait Rail Tunnel from the Alaska/Canada side of
the Strait.

The only "serious" talk I've heard (admittedly on the wrong side of the continent) is from the LaRouche folks who periodically set up tables around here.  They're very convinced of the idea, but so convinced that they tend to employ an insulting tone with people who question it.  Plus there's the pictures they hang up of the president with a Hitler mustache superimposed over the BP logo, which tends not to sell the project.
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #77 on: November 03, 2013, 10:54:18 AM »

The State Department has issued a September 8 Press Release "On Cooperation in the Bering Strait Region" regarding an agreement between Secretary of State Clinton and her Russian counterpart to pursue a Transboundary Area of Beringian specially protected natural territory.  No mention is made of a possible Bering Strait Tunnel
This January 21 article reports that Russia recently created its Beringia National Park:
Quote
Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev signed the decree to create the new national park called Beringia, Russia's World Wildlife Fund said. The park will eventually be part of the first US-Russian nature reserve spanning the Bering Strait area, it said .... Russia's Beringia national park will directly touch the US border, although it does not include some of Russia's marine waters in the strait nor the small Ratmanov island, which is a base for a Russian border control station.
Ratmanov Island is also known as Big Diomede Island (hypothetically on the tunnel's route); therefore, the existence of the park probably would not be an impediment to construction of a tunnel.

This Oct. 31 article reports that the Memorandum of Understanding regarding the transnational Beringia natural territory still has not been translated for both sides:

Quote
Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Rep. Don Young, both R-Alaska, have asked federal officials to schedule public meetings about a proposed agreement with Russia concerning a transnational park in the Bering Straits region.
Murkowksi and Young wrote to Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell on Monday. “Our understanding is that a memorandum of understanding has been agreed to by the Department of State and Russia, and that a delay in translating it for both sides is the reason it has not been released,” the letter said.
The Alaska officials said they had outlined their concerns about the idea last year but that “nothing has changed.”

“We ask that you engage directly with the Alaskans this arrangement will directly affect, that you schedule public meetings in our state to familiarize yourselves with local concerns, that you engage on this matter with the state of Alaska and that you convene government-to-government consultations with the Alaska Native tribes who are likely to be impacted,” the letter said.

This Nov. 3 article goes a step further and reports that Murkowski and Young oppose the park:

Quote
Sen. Murkowski and Rep. Don Young are saying ‘no’ to a proposed international park in the Bering Strait region of Alaska and the Russian Far East. The proposed park — referred to as Transboundary Area of Shared Beringian Heritage — would link the proposed Beringia National Park in east Russia, with the Bering Land Bridge National Preserve and Cape Krusenstern National Monument on Alaska’s Seward Peninsula.
Murkowksi and Young say in a statement that they’re concerned that the proposed park will not bring any direct benefit to Alaska Native communities in the region and that the proposed project doesn’t provide adequate protection of subsistence activities and possibly puts restrictions on mineral and economic development activities.

The devil is in the linguistic details .....
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #78 on: May 10, 2014, 09:54:24 PM »

the Russian Railway president is pushing for a decision as to whether to proceed with the tunnel by 2017:
Quote
A decision on building a tunnel under the Bering Strait to connect the railway infrastructures of Russia and North America should be made before 2017, Russian Railways President Vladimir Yakunin told journalists on Saturday, Apr. 7 ....
The project can be implemented only based on multilateral cooperation between various countries, Yakunin said. "America should be on the one side and Russia on the other. China is interested as well, and so multilateral cooperation is inevitable," he said.

This May 8 article reports that China is considering funding and constructing a high-speed rail connection between China and the Lower 48:

Quote
China is considering building a high-speed railway across the Siberia and Bering Strait to Alaska, across Canada to the US. In not so distant future, people can take the train from China to the US, according to Beijing Times Thursday citing Wang Mengshu, a railway expert and academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering.
The proposed journey will start from China's northeast region, cross Siberia to Bering Strait, and run across the Pacific Ocean by undersea tunnel to reach Alaska, from Alaska to Canada, then on to its final destination, the US. To cross Bering Strait will require approximately 200km undersea tunnel, the technology, which is already in place will also be used on Fujian to Taiwan high-speed railway tunnel. The project will be funded and constructed by China. The details of this project are yet to be finalized.

It is interesting that this is being reported as primarily, if not solely, a potential Chinese project.
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jakeroot

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #79 on: May 11, 2014, 02:57:51 AM »

It is interesting that this is being reported as primarily, if not solely, a potential Chinese project.

If I know the Chinese, tunnel construction will begin in a couple weeks, and will be complete by September. Fuck permits.
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #80 on: June 28, 2014, 12:26:35 AM »

From the Russian side: the Russian Railway president is pushing for a decision as to whether to proceed with the tunnel by 2017:
Quote
A decision on building a tunnel under the Bering Strait to connect the railway infrastructures of Russia and North America should be made before 2017, Russian Railways President Vladimir Yakunin told journalists on Saturday, Apr. 7 ...
This July 7 article indicates that Yakunin recently discussed the Bering Strait Tunnel again at a conference in Italy:
Quote
In April, Yakunin said that he believed in the possibility of building a railroad tunnel under the Bering Strait and noted that such a decision needs to be made by 2017.
"I am convinced that Russia has to develop areas in the Far East and Kamchatka with railway transport, and I think that the decision to build should be made within the next three to five years. I mean that in general this needs to be done," he said. "With regards to real implementation, I think that it should be within ten to 15 years," Yakunin said.

This June 26 article reports that Yakunin still believes that the Bering Strait tunnel is "realistic", but Yakunin does not further elaborate on any deadlines:

Quote
At the second day of the Sochi 1520 strategic forum, Russian Railway’s President, Vladimir Yakunin spoke to Global Rail News and other members of the foreign press.
Yakunin is always forthcoming at his press conferences and this one was no exception. Amongst other topics, he gave his views on high-speed rail, investment in freight corridors and the Ukrainian situation ....
Yakunin is firmly committed to enhancing long-distance rail freight corridors with significant investments in the Trans-Siberian and its northerly neighbour – the BAM. Russian Railways is also working with Kazakhstan, Belarus and China on the “New Silk Road”. He even referred to a future line under the Bering Strait to Alaska which he felt was a long term but realistic aspiration.

At any rate, nothing substantial will occur in the near future.
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #81 on: December 18, 2014, 04:10:33 PM »

This May 8 article reports that China is considering funding and constructing a high-speed rail connection between China and the Lower 48:
Quote
China is considering building a high-speed railway across the Siberia and Bering Strait to Alaska, across Canada to the US. In not so distant future, people can take the train from China to the US, according to Beijing Times Thursday citing Wang Mengshu, a railway expert and academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering.

This December 18 New York Times article includes a Q & A with Mengshu in which he clarifies that the high-speed rail project is merely speculative and that Chinese authorities have not seriously pursued it.  Mengshu's vision for the project includes both passengers and cargo:

Quote
Wang Mengshu, one of China’s top railway construction engineers and a scholar with the Chinese Academy of Engineering specializing in tunnel and underground projects, told The Beijing Times this year about his idea for a “China-Russia-Alaska-Canada-U.S. high-speed rail,” which would start in northeastern China, go through eastern Russia toward the Bering Sea, cross the Bering Strait via a tunnel, arrive in Alaska and eventually traverse Canada to the United States. The tunnel across the Bering Strait alone would be about 125 miles long, Mr. Wang said.
The trains would travel at about 220 miles per hour, transporting passengers and cargo between China and the United States in less than two days. However, Mr. Wang said this project was merely speculative and had not been considered seriously by the Chinese authorities. The countries outside China that Mr. Wang hopes would be involved in the project have not made any public comments on it ....
Q.
So China can build a tunnel across the Bering Sea, the longest undersea tunnel in the world?
A.
It is merely a little over 200 kilometers. We have the technology. It is technically feasible. The Bohai Bay tunnel, 125 kilometers between Dalian and Yantai, has already passed the scientific feasibility debate and entered the 13th Five-Year Plan. Building tunnels is not about the length. It has more to do with how deep it is in the sea than length.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2014, 04:33:13 PM by Grzrd »
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cpzilliacus

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #82 on: December 19, 2014, 08:29:30 PM »

This December 18 New York Times article includes a Q & A with Mengshu in which he clarifies that the high-speed rail project is merely speculative and that Chinese authorities have not seriously pursued it.

Wonder if the real Red Chinese goal here is to obtain access to natural resources both in Siberia and in Alaska?
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kkt

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #83 on: December 19, 2014, 11:50:38 PM »

This December 18 New York Times article includes a Q & A with Mengshu in which he clarifies that the high-speed rail project is merely speculative and that Chinese authorities have not seriously pursued it.

Wonder if the real Red Chinese goal here is to obtain access to natural resources both in Siberia and in Alaska?

I don't think they'd get any more than they already do, just some of them would come by rail instead of ship.

Actually this proposal comes from a railroad builder, so it doesn't weigh benefits against costs.

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Pete from Boston

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #84 on: December 19, 2014, 11:58:15 PM »

I just learned, when concerned about fault risk, that eastern Siberia and Alaska are both on the North American plate.  So no fault risk there.  I wonder if, as plate tectonic theory emerged during the Cold War, there was any North American resentment that they were on our plate. 
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #85 on: January 09, 2015, 01:11:10 PM »

This January 6, 2015 article reports that China has reached an agreement with Russia to build a high-speed rail connection between Moscow and Beijing, which in turn is being touted as a prelude to building a high-speed rail connection across the Bering Strait:

Quote
China has bagged a Russian contract to build a high-speed railway that would connect Moscow to Beijing in just 48 hours. This is part of a more grandiose plan to connect China with the United States and Canada by creating a tunnel in the Pacific.
"If the funds are raised smoothly … the line can be completed in five years at the quickest," Wang Meng-shu, a tunnel and railway expert at the Chinese Academy of Engineering, told the Beijing Times recently. Citing official sources, the paper put the estimated cost at $230 billion.
The project grew out of a meeting between Russian president Vladimir Putin and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in mid-October when four agencies—China’s National Development and Reform Commission, China Railway Corp., Russia's Administration of Transport and its National Railway Cooperation—signed an agreement on construction of a Eurasian high-speed rail from Beijing to Moscow while prioritizing high-speed connectivity between Moscow and the oil-rich city of Kazan, Russia.
The Moscow project would be the first part of a more ambitious program for a China-Russia-Canada-US line. Officials say the line would begin in Beijing and travel north through Siberia and under the Bering Strait to Alaska before heading south through Canada to reach its final—as yet unspecified—destination in the United States ....
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cpzilliacus

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #86 on: January 09, 2015, 01:34:51 PM »

This January 6, 2015 article reports that China has reached an agreement with Russia to build a high-speed rail connection between Moscow and Beijing, which in turn is being touted as a prelude to building a high-speed rail connection across the Bering Strait:

I wonder if Czar Vladimir will allow such a railroad to be built with standard gauge instead of Russian imperial broad gauge?

Having a break in gauge at the China/Russian border means the trucks have to be swapped-out, not exactly a high-speed operation!

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vdeane

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #87 on: January 10, 2015, 01:44:03 AM »

Probably not.  Russia's entire foreign policy is based around making it take so long for a foreign army to significantly damage Russia that they would freeze to death.  I can't see them building a rail line that would essentially allow a potential enemy (which, as far as Russians are concerned, is every other country in the world, due to the numerous times Russia has been betrayed by its "allies") direct access to Moscow.  The Bering Strait one might though, as it wouldn't really service Russia at all, just pass through.
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kkt

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #88 on: January 10, 2015, 12:50:42 PM »

From the Russian point of view, why should they build a rail line that would allow the Chinese and Americans easier access to their territory in Siberia than the Russian railroads have?
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US 41

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #89 on: January 10, 2015, 01:48:21 PM »

I don't think the US and Russia will ever allow a connection between Asia and North America. The fact is the US and Russia are not really friends. We are more each others enemies than anything.
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #90 on: March 23, 2015, 02:22:54 PM »

This January 6, 2015 article reports that China has reached an agreement with Russia to build a high-speed rail connection between Moscow and Beijing, which in turn is being touted as a prelude to building a high-speed rail connection across the Bering Strait:
I wonder if Czar Vladimir will allow such a railroad to be built with standard gauge instead of Russian imperial broad gauge?
Having a break in gauge at the China/Russian border means the trucks have to be swapped-out, not exactly a high-speed operation!

This International Business Times article reports that Putin is currently considering a proposal to build a high-speed railway across Siberia to the Bering Strait:

Quote
A plan to build a high-speed railway across much of Siberia to the Bering Strait, the body of water between Russia and Alaska, has been submitted to Russian President Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia's Academy of Sciences announced Monday. The Bering Strait is just 55 miles wide at its narrowest point, meaning that if such a high-speed train line were to be built in Russia, its last stop could be a short distance from U.S. soil.
In an interview published Monday with the Russian government daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta, Vladimir Fortov, the head of the Academy of Sciences, said the proposal came from ideas sought by the Russian government to help advance economic development in the far east. He called the project "very large-scale and expensive," the Moscow Times reported, but did not offer estimates regarding costs or funding.
The far east of Russia is a region rich in resources such as "metals, minerals and timber," The Economist has reported, while scholars describe the area as having been abandoned and underdeveloped, despite its trove of natural resources, under the Soviet Union and after its collapse. Only recently has Russia begun to focus on the region in an attempt to capitalize on these resources.

I wonder if China presented the proposal to Putin?  If so, it would be interesting to know the gauge size that is included in the proposal.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2015, 06:18:05 PM by Grzrd »
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kkt

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #91 on: March 23, 2015, 04:09:02 PM »

The Russian economy is collapsing.  I don't think they'll be funding that kind of megaproject in the near future.
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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #92 on: March 23, 2015, 04:38:15 PM »

I wonder if Czar Vladimir will allow such a railroad to be built with standard gauge instead of Russian imperial broad gauge?

Having a break in gauge at the China/Russian border means the trucks have to be swapped-out, not exactly a high-speed operation!
Would it matter much in a journey that would still take such a long time.

Moscow - Beijing is 5808km as the crow flies. You are talking something like 6500km, especially as, the Chinese would simply extend their Urumqi route onward. At even 400km/h, that's still over 16 hours. Who cares if that goes up to 17 to 17 and a half hours?
The Russian economy is collapsing.  I don't think they'll be funding that kind of megaproject in the near future.
I'd call masses of high speed rail a giga project (this would would be pushing 'tera'). The only mega project I see them doing is the $2bn bridge over the Kerch Straight (I think rail as well as road, and I imagine utilities as well), and that for strategic geopolitical reasons.
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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #93 on: March 23, 2015, 10:07:56 PM »

I believe the Kerch Strait Bridge is a big priority for them (for obvious reasons).  And while Russia's economy isn't doing well, they've bounced back before.  Putin might be looking to capitalize on the resources in the area.
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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #94 on: March 24, 2015, 04:47:19 AM »

The Russian economy is heavily focused on oil and oil products, but the OPEC issues (ie not acting like a cartel) means that the price of oil is low. Russia can bounce back, but only if external factors align or the whole economy is overhauled. After all, they can't build a trading economy as the EU is unwilling to trade freely with them (even before all the Ukraine stuff). Putin wanted that, and it would have stopped their overspecialisation, but alas.

Putin himself is in trouble, hence his sabre-rattling the EU (eg the threatening to nuke Denmark if it joins a NATO project) and long disappearance. I doubt the next Soviet throwback would be decent or strong enough (Putin has killed his rivals, remember) to not move beyond this 'create a cold war with the West to get support' phase.

That said, the EU (and also NATO) has as much to do with that Cold War mentality as Putin struggling to hold onto power - after the Ukrainian coup, the EU-recognised and pro-EU violent mob government saw it as such an either/or thing that they made Russiophobic laws, gave Russia pretty good cause to invade Crimea for the protection of the people living there who had been stripped of their rights. Putin never saw EU and Russia as either/or until his offer of a trade deal was rejected out of hand without a thought.
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #95 on: March 24, 2015, 08:59:56 AM »

The Russian economy is collapsing.  I don't think they'll be funding that kind of megaproject in the near future.
I'd call masses of high speed rail a giga project (this would would be pushing 'tera').

Getting closer to being on-topic with this forum, The Siberian Times reports that a mega road network would accompany the high-speed rail line, the cost for the overall project would be trillions of dollars, and that an ultimate goal is to link up with the American continent (directly on-topic with this thread  :)):

Quote
New cities and industries could be created from construction of high-speed railway and motorway routes spanning whole of country.
Plans have been unveiled for an ambitious new transport route through Russia with a mega road and high-speed rail network to link Asia with Europe.
At a meeting of the Russian Academy of Science, the head of the Russian Railways Vladimir Yakunin presented the idea for the Trans-Eurasian belt Development (TEPR).
Seen as a powerful and versatile transportation corridor it would join up to other networks and reach from the Atlantic to the Pacific, via the heart of Siberia and the Far East.
The project would see not only a new train network built alongside the Trans-Siberian Railway but the construction of major roads, pipelines for oil and gas, and the laying of facilities for electricity and water supplies.
Mr Yakunin has been engaged in the development of the project with academic Gennady Osipov and the rector of Moscow State University, Viktor Sadovnichy.
During his presentation the head of the Russian Railways said that such a scheme was vital more than ever and would make Russia the new world centre for the creation and development of high-tech industries.
He also said that Western-style globalisation is no longer seen as an incentive but as a hindrance on the economic, scientific, moral and spiritual development of society.
He said: 'This is an inter-state, inter-civilization, project. It should be an alternative to the current (neo-liberal) model, which has caused a systemic crisis. The project should be turned into a world 'future zone', and it must be based on leading, not catching, technologies.'
The project aims to construct the mega transportation route to span the entire length of Russia, and link into existing networks in Europe and Asia. That would create the first ever modern route from the Pacific Ocean in the east to the Atlantic Ocean in the west.
If the idea is successful, it is expected that could create 10 to 15 new industries, new cities and a huge number of new jobs, as well as further development of Siberia and the Far East.
According to Mr Yakunin, TEPR could become the GOELRO of the 21st century, in reference to the large-scale electrification of Russia proposed and implemented by Lenin and Stalin between 1920 and 1935.
Talking about a rough estimate for the costs of the project he said that it will require trillions of dollars, but insisted the economic returns would outweigh these investments.
Viktor Sadovnichy, rector of the Moscow State University, said the network would help the Far East and Siberia feel more in touch with the rest of the world. He said: 'Recently I returned from Khabarovsk, where I met with rectors of universities of the Far East - about 100 of them in total.
'The main problem that we discussed was isolation. Up to 30 per cent of talented young people graduating from schools leave these regions.'
Vladimir Fortov, the Head of the Russian Academy of Science, said the project is 'very ambitious and expensive'.
But he added: 'It will solve many problems in the development of the vast region. It is connected with social programs, and new fields, new energy resources, and so on.
'The idea is that basing on the new technology of high-speed rail transport we can build a new railway near the Trans-Siberian Railway with the opportunity to go to Chukotka and Bering Strait and then to the American continent.'

Is China viewed as a possible trillions-of-dollars money fairy?

The article is accompanied by several rail photos and several photos of the Kolyma Road (a.k.a. "Road of Bones").

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With the combination of the remote possibility of a road to the Bering Strait on the Russian side, a polimagistral Bering Strait tunnel, and a feasible road connection on the Alaskan side, the dream of the ultimate road trip still lives!
« Last Edit: March 24, 2015, 09:34:44 AM by Grzrd »
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vdeane

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #96 on: March 24, 2015, 03:22:56 PM »

This would equate to over 1200 miles of road in Siberia and over 500 miles in Alaska.  Those numbers would go up the moment terrain (and, on the Alaska side, the locations of towns like Nome) is factored in.  The terrain is also pretty mountainous on both sides.  It would certainly be a fun drive, but cost a LOT of money to build.
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kkt

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #97 on: March 24, 2015, 04:03:49 PM »

It doesn't make sense.  If you want cheap transport of tons of stuff, ship is cheaper than rail.  If you're in a hurry, air is faster than rail.  Keeping the railroad open in the winter in Alaska and Siberia would be a heck of a job.  The ports of China and the west coasts of Canada and the U.S. are open year-round with no special effort required.
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cpzilliacus

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #98 on: June 19, 2015, 05:12:56 PM »

Wall Street Journal: China to Design New Russian High-Speed Railway - Russia forced to look east for development knowhow after fallout with West

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Russia--China has signed up to design a high-speed railway between the Russian cities of Moscow and Kazan, one of the first concrete examples of the new business with China that Russian officials have been pursuing with renewed vigor since falling out with the West.

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A unit of Russia's state-owned JSC Russian Railways signed a contract Thursday with the design unit of China's state-controlled China Railway Group to come up with the plans for a 770 kilometer high-speed rail between the two Russian cities. The Chinese firm will work alongside two Russian companies for on the designs for a total cost of 20.8 billion rubles ($383 million) over the next two years, according to Russian Railways.

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He said the primary effect of U.S. sanctions on him has been to increase his notoriety. "I got much more interesting," Mr. Yakunin said, explaining that there was no good reason to sanction him. "The motive that he is close to the president--you know, this is funny. That is not serious."

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A former Soviet diplomat in New York, Mr. Yakunin has long espoused a dim view of U.S.-Russian relations. Still, he hasn't ruled out a Russian rail link to the U.S.

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He described Russian Railways' plans to build rail links in Kamchatka, the peninsula in Russia's far east, just across the sea from Alaska. A few years back, a U.S. businessman presented a proposal to build a tunnel under the Bering Strait connecting the rail networks of the two countries, he said.

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"I suppose that's not a next century idea," Mr. Yakunin said. "It will be fulfilled."
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Grzrd

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Re: Bering Strait Rail Tunnel
« Reply #99 on: August 11, 2015, 09:45:24 PM »

This August 6 article reports on a recent Peace Road Rally in Nome to promote a Bering Strait tunnel:

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At a restaurant in downtown Nome, diners discussed world peace and international relations over pizza and sushi. The hodgepodge group gathered together for the Peace Road Rally, an event organized to increase interest in a tunnel connecting Russia and the U.S. across the Bering Strait.
Religious leader Reverend Sun Myung Moon proposed a Bering Strait tunnel as a tool for world peace to the United Nations in 2005. To commemorate the tenth anniversary of his address, the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, a religious organization Reverend Moon was affiliated with, organized a series of rallies across the U.S., including stops in Kodiak and Anchorage, culminating at the edge of the Bering Sea.
Michael Balcomb, current president of the Family Federation, explained his lofty goal and large price tag over lunch with a few local residents and city officials. For Balcomb, the 60-mile tunnel is as much about ideals as it is about economics.
“Peace is always cheaper than war,” Balcomb stressed, “if we can find hundreds of billions of dollars for war, we surely can find hundreds of billions for peace.”
But Balcomb acknowledges that it takes a vision to accomplish such a large project, just like it took a vision to build railways across America. “If we can find a way,” Balcomb said, “the funds will follow.”

Judging by the banner in this snip of a photo accompanying the article, the Family Federation's polimagistral vision for the tunnel includes a bicycle component:

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