High Speed Rail linking Russia and the U.S.?

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WICT106

OBS Chief
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Sep 8, 2003
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I note that, just to connect Alaska to the rest of the North American railroad network, over 1000 miles of track must be built. In a part of the continent that is sparsely populated. This 1000 -- 1500 miles would have to be built, over some challenging terrain, and then another 2000 miles would have to be built in order to cross the Bering Strait and connect to the Russian railways. The costs, combined with the marginal prospect of financial returns, Make this project either a "Moon program" -level national unifier, or a complete non-starter. I think we might see the Alaska connection, but no trans--Bering Strait Tunnel.

Never gonna happen, dear readers.
 

Anderson

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Nov 16, 2010
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Virginia
On the one hand, I do think a Russia-Alaska-US rail system is plausible if you get the right conditions for it (mainly, increased resource extraction efforts in the relevant parts of all three countries). With that said, it won't be HSR...it'll be a "normal" freight railroad, perhaps with limited passenger service (i.e. a train per day in each direction, with one or two per week running as "tourist"-ish trains with improved services).
 
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Eric S

Engineer
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Dec 19, 2009
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Milwaukee
Not sure how Amtrak's ability or inability to make a hot dog has anything to do with a rather far-fetched idea of US-Russia HSR line. Or a US-Russia standard rail line.
 

cirdan

Engineer
Joined
Mar 30, 2011
Messages
2,526
Well if they connect China to the lower 48 I could see it as a freight line. And a busy one at that as much stuff comes from china. That is if rail is faster then a boat. But to do that one must tunnel past two mountain ranges. And hundreds of mile of the Russian frontier
It may be fatser to send freight that way but it won't be cheaper as modern freight ships are pretty much unbeatable in terms of cost efficiency.

So the question is, how big is that segment of the market for which speed can justify the extra cost but for which air freight is still too expensive.

I don't think that sector alone is big enough to be able to pay for such a highly expensive infrastructure.
 
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