Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Trains-Wake Up Canada
Map of high speed trains in Europe. Click on image to see...check out the speed legend!
I'm not like the biggest train geek in the world...but I do have a thing for trains. My grandfather was a dispatcher for Canadian National Railway and my mother was born in a train station where my grandparents were working in northern Canada. Our family was riding a train somewhere at least a few times a year. Every summer my sister and I took a train to our grandmothers cabin on a lake without road service in northern Ontario. I used to ride between Calgary and Montreal frequently and the trip between Alberta along the Frazer River to Vancouver is among my favourite travel memories. Canada made a big mistake by not keeping up train schedules...a mistake that is likely to be turned around as soon as petroleum is too expensive and we need high speed trains to get from city to city. Canada should be creating jobs right now building high speed trains and tracks. (hint hint...President Obama...trying to create jobs? Duh...build some trains!!!!) Meanwhile...Stagg and I want to go to Europe for six months. We're not sure when or how we are going to get this trip going...but I have been looking at trains and schedules for high speed train travel in Europe. It's getting me really geeked. We have a rough idea of where we'd like to go in Europe. Florence for one month. England/London for one month. Rome two weeks. Ireland one week. Frankfurt one week. Berlin a few days. Venice two days. Copenhagen one week. Lisbon one week. Stockholm one week. Paris one week. Amsterdam one week. Prague one week. Warsaw one week. Again, how we are going to manage hanging out in Europe for six months...we haven't figured out yet...but trains will surely be helping us get around. Three cheers for trains!
The Trans-European high-speed rail network is one of a number of the European Union's Trans-European transport networks. It was defined by the Council Directive 96/48/EC of 23 July 1996.
The aim of this EU Directive is to achieve the interoperability of the European high-speed train network at the various stages of its design, construction and operation.
The network is defined as a system consisting of a set of infrastructures, fixed installations, logistic equipment and rolling stock.
High speed train in Italy. Site for trains in Eurpoe
"the bullet train" is a network of high-speed railway lines in Japan operated by four Japan Railways Group companies. Starting with the 210 km/h (130 mph) Tōkaidō Shinkansen in 1964, the now 2,459 km (1,528 mi) long network has expanded to link most major cities on the islands of Honshū and Kyūshū at speeds up to 300 km/h (186 mph). Test runs have reached 443 km/h (275 mph) for conventional rail in 1996, and up to a world-record 581 km/h (361 mph) for maglev trainsets in 2003.
The international definition of high-speed rail is new lines with a speed of at least 250 km/h (155 mph) and existing lines with a speed of around 200 km/h (124 mph). As of 2009, there are four "classic" main railway lines in the United Kingdom operating at 125 mph (201 km/h), plus 108 km (70 mi) of purpose built high-speed line.
The high-speed route to Mokpo will share the existing Seoul-Busan tracks to Osong. From there it will head south west for 230km (144 miles) to reach Mokpo, with some sections paralleling the existing conventional Honam railway route, which takes 2hrs 58mins to traverse from Seoul to Mokpo.
The new line will radically reduce journey times. High-speed services will be able to reach Mokpo in 1hr 46mins, partly aided by a shorter route, at an estimated average speed of 181km/h over 320km of new railway.
Construction has been due to start in 2006, with the aim of completing the whole route by 2017, at a cost of around US$11bn.