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VIA Rail

Why should we encourage Greyhound to cooperate with VIA when GO could expand what they do already to the rest of SW Ontario? There's nothing in the rules that prevents GO from competing on the same routes that coach operators currently do.
 
Of course it has to do with population density.......you need people to take the train and specifically those people need to be concentrated in relatively few locations. Rail is only effective today for inner city travel. Our highways are here to stay and people in the country and small centres use them a lot as they have high car ownership and their transit systems are lousy in the smaller cities and non-existent in places of less than 15,000.

Also effective rail naturally means that people have to get the station and that means either chancing leaving your car there all day at a healthy premium or taking transit and the major centres on these lines all have decent transit. No one is going to drive for 30 minutes to get to a train station and them pay to leave their car there...............they'll just take the car to the city.

VIA could work with Greyhound and other regional bus services to coordinate times and maybe even some form of integration in fares so Greyhound in Southern Ont/Que very much would work as a feeder system, I think they would find it mutually beneficial.
If the density of the Maritimes or the Prairies were too low to support rail, then Australia wouldn't have dozens of lines with ridership that dwarfs VIA. Norway and Finland wouldn't have lines to small northern towns. It's difficult for Canadians to understand, since we've been telling ourselves for so long that a spread out population is synonymous with driving (it isn't). But other countries with the same conditions and the same love of cars have gone ahead and done the things that we keep saying are impossible. No, the highways aren't going anywhere obviously, but that's not the point. The point is that passenger rail is no longer feasible because we prioritized roads over rail, and there's no other reason.

By the way, you don't need much transit in a town of 15,000. It's very easy to get to the centre of towns that small and it certainly doesn't take 30 minutes. You could just as easily take a cab, get a ride from someone, or even walk. And downtown parking in small towns is cheap. Now again, we've made it so easy to drive that there are plenty of towns where rail is no longer feasible when it once was. But density has nothing to do with it.
 
If the density of the Maritimes or the Prairies were too low to support rail, then Australia wouldn't have dozens of lines with ridership that dwarfs VIA. Norway and Finland wouldn't have lines to small northern towns.
And what are the population densities for those lines in Australia and Norway compared to the Maritimes (outside of Halifax) and the Prairies other than the Edmonton/Calgary and Regina/Saskatoon corridors?
 
And what are the population densities for those lines in Australia and Norway compared to the Maritimes (outside of Halifax) and the Prairies other than the Edmonton/Calgary and Regina/Saskatoon corridors?
The same or lower. The density of the Nordic countries is about the same as the Maritimes, in the 15-20 people/sq km range, lower in the northern areas. The more populated parts of Australia aren't much higher, and it serves a lot of towns well outside the more populated areas. The populated parts of the Prairies (not counting the empty northern parts) is about 10/sq km. The Windsor-Quebec corridor is ~120, which is the same population density as France.

Canadians have a funny idea that we're unique in how thinly spread out our population is. We're not.
 
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Wow. I'm very surprised to see that there's no Calgary to Edmonton service. That's a no brainier.
I'm not. A route like that is perfect for car travel. 300 km, get your Timmies and a good e-book and you've got a good road trip. The problem with the train is that once you get to Edmonton, you need a car to get to your next destination. Plus, assuming you already own the car, the only cost is 600 km worth of gas, at 10L/per 100km, that's 60L of gas at $1.15 a litre, equal to about seventy bucks. If you've got a passenger or two, that makes the trip even cheaper per head vs. train, especially if you need to add in the cost of taxis at each end.

The only advantage the train would offer is the ability to either sleep/relax/work on the train as opposed to driving. But there's a nasty secret that we don't like to accept.... Canadians actually enjoy driving their own cars places, even us Torontonians who get stuck in traffic http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toron...mmute-the-answer-might-surprise-you-1.2850484
 
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We're definitely not spread out when looking at Windsor-Quebec corridor. It seems perfect for good train service, with several major cities and many smaller ones all in a line.

Outside of that corridor though, the case seems much weaker.
 
One thing that should be kept in mind when politicians propose full length HSR - Quebec City-Montreal-Kingston-Toronto-London-Windsor is 1150km or thereabouts. The Amtrak Northeast Corridor - Boston-New York-Philadelphia-Washington-Richmond has a massively larger population, more than all of Canada combined, and a significantly shorter distance at about 890km.
 
One thing that should be kept in mind when politicians propose full length HSR - Quebec City-Montreal-Kingston-Toronto-London-Windsor is 1150km or thereabouts. The Amtrak Northeast Corridor - Boston-New York-Philadelphia-Washington-Richmond has a massively larger population, more than all of Canada combined, and a significantly shorter distance at about 890km.

It doesn't seem very shocking that the Windsor-QC corridor is less populated and less dense than the most urbanized & populated corridor in the US.

But I would think that the Windsor-QC corridor is still heavily and densely populated enough for good rail service.
 
The same or lower. The density of the Nordic countries is about the same as the Maritimes, in the 15-20 people/sq km range, lower in the northern areas. The more populated parts of Australia aren't much higher, and it serves a lot of towns well outside the more populated areas. The populated parts of the Prairies (not counting the empty northern parts) is about 10/sq km. The Windsor-Quebec corridor is ~120, which is the same population density as France.

Canadians have a funny idea that we're unique in how thinly spread out our population is. We're not.

So....if I understand you correctly.....if you leave out the parts where no one lives, the density of the Prairies is about half of the density Nordic countries?
 
It doesn't seem very shocking that the Windsor-QC corridor is less populated and less dense than the most urbanized & populated corridor in the US.

But I would think that the Windsor-QC corridor is still heavily and densely populated enough for good rail service.
Good, yes. 320km/h end to end - or even >200km/h? I think that's more than we can chew. My fear is that there are achievable, significant gains possible at (compared to HSR) massively lower cost which get drowned out by multibillion $ pie in the sky.
 
It doesn't seem very shocking that the Windsor-QC corridor is less populated and less dense than the most urbanized & populated corridor in the US.

But I would think that the Windsor-QC corridor is still heavily and densely populated enough for good rail service.

This has been studied endlessly. The basic takeaway is that a Toronto-Ottawa-Montreal route is projected to have a very small positive impact, the rest of the routes would be negative:

From the point of view of the Canadian economy as a whole, the economic analysis showed that three
combinations of technologies and segments have a positive NPV8. They were by decreasing order of
importance:
• E300+ on the Montreal – Toronto segment with NPV of $869 million CAD
• F200+ on the Montreal – Toronto segment with NPV of $817 million CAD
• E300+ on the Quebec City – Toronto segment with NPV of $257 million CAD

Which, in the context of a project which could very easily see billions in cost over runs, is pretty much nothing.

Oddly enough almost no routes would ever have a positive impact in Quebec; that may explain why the Ontario govt's shifted to "HSR in one province."

If you look at successful HSR corridors (Tokyo-Osaka, Taipei-Kaoshiung, Paris-Lyon, Seoul-Busan) they tend to be in corridors with several times the density as the Corridor, tend to be much shorter than the Corridor (500km Tokyo Osaka), tend to connect much denser cities with much better local transit, and tend to exist in very centralized countries.
 
I'm not. A route like that is perfect for car travel. 300 km, get your Timmies and a good e-book and you've got a good road trip. The problem with the train is that once you get to Edmonton, you need a car to get to your next destination. Plus, assuming you already own the car, the only cost is 600 km worth of gas, at 10L/per 100km, that's 60L of gas at $1.15 a litre, equal to about seventy bucks. If you've got a passenger or two, that makes the trip even cheaper per head vs. train, especially if you need to add in the cost of taxis at each end.

The only advantage the train would offer is the ability to either sleep/relax/work on the train as opposed to driving. But there's a nasty secret that we don't like to accept.... Canadians actually enjoy driving their own cars places, even us Torontonians who get stuck in traffic http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toron...mmute-the-answer-might-surprise-you-1.2850484

If you want to read an e-book, I think you should take the train.
 

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