High speed rail plan skips Augusta, but that could change

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ATLANTA -- Gov. Sonny Perdue committed Wednesday to rally neighboring governors to engage in a discussion of a national, high-speed rail network which would zip trains linking Savannah, Atlanta and Jacksonville with other states.

The current plan only offers a broad outline of the routes, not specifics. That means that some cities like Augusta not on the preliminary routes could still lobby to get a stop, a governor's spokesman said.

As the only Southeastern governor attending a Washington meeting with Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Perdue promised to get those from Florida, Alabama and the Carolinas involved, according to Perdue spokesman Bert Brantley.

"If you look at the map, a major chunk of that goes through Georgia," Brantley said. "He certainly felt like he needed to be at the table."

Perdue has ridden high-speed trains in China and Spain during trade missions. Biden has ridden trains daily since entering Congress between Washington and his home in Delaware.

President Obama announced in April that he wanted to accelerate planning for the network similar to the Interstate Highway System begun in the 1950s. The federal government has already set aside $8 billion in stimulus funds for a rail network, and Obama's budget calls for another $5 billion.

"President Obama has handed us an extraordinary

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humbleopinion
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humbleopinion 06/04/09 - 07:16 am
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With the commissioners that

With the commissioners that Augusta has, does ANYBODY think we have a chance of something good happening here? We can't even operate a small civic center. Augusta was left off the list of cities on purpose to save the embarrassment of what would happen.....

dhd1108
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dhd1108 06/04/09 - 07:29 am
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howzabout we try bringing

howzabout we try bringing back ol' fashioned regular passenger trains first? see if they "fly". i'm all for improving out pathetic national rails system, but this uh.. overambitious (i'm being polite here) high-speed pipedream is putting the cart before the horse.

themaninthemirror
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themaninthemirror 06/04/09 - 07:43 am
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Does this surprise anybody?

Does this surprise anybody? Augusta has never been on Gov. Perdue's radar.

SCGAL53
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SCGAL53 06/04/09 - 08:06 am
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Turn the civic center into a

Turn the civic center into a train station!

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
8346
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ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 06/04/09 - 08:08 am
0
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That's the best idea yet!

That's the best idea yet!

dashiel
176
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dashiel 06/04/09 - 08:18 am
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Brilliant! So retro, so

Brilliant! So retro, so Augusta. We could call it Union Station.

themaninthemirror
0
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themaninthemirror 06/04/09 - 08:27 am
0
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Have it take a scenic tour of

Have it take a scenic tour of the new TEE center before it leaves town.

weatheringheights
0
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weatheringheights 06/04/09 - 08:29 am
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No, loosing the JB in the

No, loosing the JB in the title would open up a whole other can of worms. Remember this is Augusta where the commisioners can't order lunch from Subway without turning it into a race issue!

WW1949
19
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WW1949 06/04/09 - 08:56 am
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I just returned from Italy

I just returned from Italy and road the bullet train from Rome to Florence. What a nice ride. It goes 160 mph and with comfort. There were three tracks side by side so two could go one way and one the other. You did not even feel like you were going that fast until the other train passed by going the other way. The US could do it with no problem.

colcamp1
10
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colcamp1 06/04/09 - 09:01 am
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Only one person has mentioned

Only one person has mentioned anything about race.

COLUMBIACOUNTYRESIDENT
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COLUMBIACOUNTYRESIDENT 06/04/09 - 09:05 am
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Gov. Perdue finally

Gov. Perdue finally understands that the traffic problem will only keep getting worse unless you encourage a reasonable, efficient, quick, reliable form of transportation like high-speed rail. It will open up new job opportunities for commuters in large cities that have access to transit stops, it will encourage multi-modal transportation, it will help people in inner cities who struggle to find jobs and make ends meet get access to new jobs, and it will save billions of dollars a year in insurance fees, parking fees, gasoline, and automobile repairs. The high up-front expense will be easily recouped by serving metropolitan areas that would rely on this transportation heavily. It could even help our travels to Atlanta or Savannah to go to larger airports, since it would only take 1-1.5 hours to get there instead of 2.5. Not a bad trip considering that we wouldn't have to mess with Atlanta traffic! They could connect the high-speed rail to MARTA and get you to the airport without setting foot in a car (except to get to the train station).

double_standard
166
Points
double_standard 06/04/09 - 09:29 am
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Turn the Bush Field into a

Turn the Bush Field into a train station. Because who needs free parking when an airline ticket is $500.

JFJ
0
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JFJ 06/04/09 - 09:31 am
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Augusta definitely needs

Augusta definitely needs train service. It's sad that the only options are Greyhound or a drive to Atlanta or Columbia to get a reasonably priced flight.

Grasshopper
7
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Grasshopper 06/04/09 - 09:37 am
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Just as the interstates

Just as the interstates connect the cities so should high speed rail. I would rather travel by rail then airplane.

142
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Dan White 06/04/09 - 10:04 am
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High speed trains are the

High speed trains are the answer to reducing dependence on Islamic oil that funds anti-Americanism. It would be great to hop a train for a one hour, no traffic ride, from Augusta to Atlanta to see a Braves game. The time has come for sure. Interstates are dinosaurs.

jiclemens
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jiclemens 06/04/09 - 10:29 am
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Turning Bush Field into a

Turning Bush Field into a station is a great idea! Rail service between Birmingham, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbia and Charlotte would be very successful.

Fiat_Lux
15693
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Fiat_Lux 06/04/09 - 11:56 am
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The best solution is to

The best solution is to create (re-create) normal passenger rail service from cities like Augusta or Columbus that links up to high-speed hubs in places like Atlanta and Savannah. It prevents the high-speed lines from turning into milk runs while still giving the whole state access. We've already got railways; it's ridiculous not to use them for moving people as well as cargo.

disssman
6
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disssman 06/04/09 - 01:33 pm
0
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And just where would thin

And just where would thin high speed train run in Augusta? It would probably kill more people here in one year than all thoough history. Think about it folks just how many streets would have to close for a long time waiting for the train to pass thru?

HillGuy
7
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HillGuy 06/04/09 - 02:55 pm
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I can see high speed rail

I can see high speed rail corridors paralleling I95, I85 and I75... but Augusta is just out in left field and not on a high traffic corridor.

draksig
167
Points
draksig 06/04/09 - 03:22 pm
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Very few people fly passenger

Very few people fly passenger trains becasue they cost as much as an airplane ticket and take as long as a Bus. If they organized a high speed rail system similar to the way the airlines worked, regional airports with connections to smaller airports and interconnected to each other (throw in bus service between the smaller rair stations and smaller communities), it may have a chance to succeed, providing the can keep the ticket prices low enough.

HillGuy
7
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HillGuy 06/04/09 - 03:31 pm
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draksig.. you are right, the

draksig.. you are right, the trains are outrageous and are almost as much as a flight. When I was in Washington, DC I had a cpl of days extra and I wanted to go up to New York. I figured I would take Amtrak, but discovered a round trip train ticket would cost around $300(and this was not the highspeed Acela). There were several bus companies offering direct service to NYC for around $20 each way. So, I took the bus. It was very nice, it even had wifi internet service. The passengers looked to be young professionals and college students. It took about the same time to travel by bus as it would have by train. I doubt many people would choose to take a train to Atlanta if it was going to cost that much.

themaninthemirror
0
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themaninthemirror 06/04/09 - 04:36 pm
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"Very few people fly

"Very few people fly passenger trains" This qualifies as one of the most brilliant comments ever made. If high spped rail does come to Augusta, "draksiq" should be CEO of the Augusta branch. He fully understands the customer base and knows that no one would fly on a passenger train. Brilliant!

reb007
1
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reb007 06/04/09 - 05:00 pm
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The IQ of Augusta will never

The IQ of Augusta will never allow anything positive to happen.

andywarhol
0
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andywarhol 06/04/09 - 06:06 pm
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reb007. Bam! you're on it!

reb007. Bam! you're on it! With over half of the population as high school dropouts, that is a correct statement. Da A U G is weetodded.

scorehouse
196
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scorehouse 06/04/09 - 07:27 pm
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trains for trains sake! the
Unpublished

trains for trains sake! the south doesn't have the population density to support mass transit. who in their right mind is going to drive to the train station, pay for parking, pay for a train ticket and wait for a train to go to columbia or savannah? by the time you catch the train, you'd have already reached your destination and have your own transportation with you to get around. i've been on trains around the world. train stations are no different than bus depots except the toilets let turds right down on the tracks. second thought, turd filled train station might spruce up downtown!

used2Bjonny
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used2Bjonny 06/04/09 - 08:45 pm
0
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I wrote, years ago, about how

I wrote, years ago, about how it would make more sense to construct high-speed rail to ATL, rather than blow $ on Bush Field...Imagine a 45-min. commute to ATL...how many of you do NOT think that people would buy in AUG and work in ATL??? Sheesh...increased tax base w/out the need for increased industry, congestion...

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