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Rail advocates, critics to face off in Palo Alto

Original post made on Nov 14, 2011

Top officials from the California High-Speed Rail Authority will join some of the rail project's toughest critics in Palo Alto Tuesday afternoon for a public discussion of the controversial, voter-approved rail line.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, November 14, 2011, 6:46 PM

Comments (7)

Posted by stan, a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Nov 14, 2011 at 8:20 pm

$99 billion divided by about 37 million residents equals about $2676 of wealth extracted from every person in the state. Multiply that by at least 2 or 3 to account for interest that must be paid to service this debt, and you end up with a realistic estimate of just how much the CA High Speed Rail project will cost every citizen in this state, around $8000. That of course assumes that the cost of the project caps at $99B. Considering that the CA HSR generated that $98B estimate, the odds are high that that figure is grossly underestimated.

That money will either come from higher taxes, or from reduced services. Do you like your neighborhood schools, depend on services provided by the state, enjoy state parks for recreation, think decently supported public services (including emergency services) are an important part of your quality of life in California? With CA HSR, you have a choice; pay for a train to nowhere via significant lost state services, about $7B to $10B each year for the next 30 years, or pay more in taxes for decades to come.

With no money to build it, the odds of the cost spiraling out of sight high, no riders to pay for it, NO private investors on the horizon, and a 'business plan' that is really nothing more than a marketing brochure to manage it, and yet it persists. If this isn't a greasy pork project, I don't know what is. Mr. Gordon, do the right thing; terminate the funding for the CA HSR Authority, and disband the CA HSR Authority before they have the opportunity to squander another billion on their fantasy train to nowhere.


Posted by Big Al, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 14, 2011 at 8:45 pm

Stan for governor!
(if you have the time old sport)

By the way, is this a 10 round or 12 round fight?
Winner takes all?


Posted by ODB, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Nov 14, 2011 at 11:28 pm

Let's do a little math.

At the initial estimate of $33 billion, a 2x cost overrun would come out to $66 billion.

Now the cost estimate has tripled to $99 billion. A 2x cost overrun would put it at $198 billion. That's SIX TIMES the original estimate sold to voters in 2008.


Posted by Martin, a resident of Downtown North
on Nov 15, 2011 at 7:48 am

With the latest peninsula EIR legal victory, the acceptance of the "blended approach" in the HSR business plan, the growing central valley opposition to HSR, and the Oct 2012 financial deadline for $3B in federal funds, I am hoping that the SF - SJ 4-track option is officially thrown out, a new EIR w/ the blended approach is quickly produced, and that electrification of Caltrain and the LA local commuter rails can become the "initial HSR segments", starting Sept 2012. May seem crazy looking back over the last couple years, but it could end up as a solution to truly benefit our communities and the state.

Martin


Posted by stan hutchings, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Nov 15, 2011 at 11:08 am

I just called Assemblymember Gordon's Los Altos office at 650-691-2121. I requested that he stop wasting CA taxpayer's money and put an immediate end to the HSR project.
I encourage everyone to call his office and register their vote.
By the way, I'd like to see the autonomous "smart" car and smart highways developed instead of the very limited HSR. Our cars and roads go almost everywhere in California, but the HSR has a fatally limited destinations.


Posted by Greg, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Nov 15, 2011 at 12:06 pm

I wish HSR were not referred to as "voter approved." That bill was passed under completely different assumptions. There is no way the voters would approve of it now.


Posted by Babies, a resident of Community Center
on Nov 16, 2011 at 11:19 pm

Stan..the rest of us here in the state are sick of arrogant things ...teabaggers /Nimbys/golddiggers..We are going to build it..I suggest you move to Ohio if you what quite slurb living..the rest of us that will be alive in 50 years do what people that plan ahead for society instead of the next stock dividend..


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