Thursday, September 25, 2014

Rail advocates keeping pressure on Walker

[Updated, 1:51 p.m.] Props to the backers of Amtrak expansion for keeping the pressure on our Wrong-way governor who killed Wisconsin's Amtrak rail industry as well as expanded service here:   
Time to Get WI Back on Track with High Speed Rail 
Friday, September 19, 2014
CHICAGO, Ill. – Wisconsin now has to play catch-up, says Howard Learner, executive director of the Environmental Law and Policy Center (ELPC), noting the state has been left behind by its Midwest neighbors in high-speed rail. 
The ELPC is expanding its advertising campaign in Wisconsin, erecting another billboard south of Milwaukee to encourage political leaders to support high-speed rail. Learner says it’s time to put partisan politics aside. 
“Even though Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson and Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle were strong advocates of advancing high-speed rail in Wisconsin, Gov. Walker made the quixotic decision to turn down funding for higher speed rail going from Milwaukee to Madison that would have created jobs in Wisconsin,” says Learner.
The new billboard is on Interstate 94, 800 ft. northeast of State Line Rd., near the Illinois border. I'm working on getting a photo. 

Related information about the new trains made in Wisconsin but forced elsewhere by Walker's opposition, here:
This blog has tracked the banishment by Scott Walker of new Amtrak trains, rail-line construction work and train assembly jobs in Wisconsin - - and noted the happy arrival in Oregon of two of the banned-but-built in Wisconsin trains:

Join us in a celebration
train cab in production
Oregon's Talgo trainset, preparing for move to Colorado 


On Friday, July 26 at the Eugene Amtrak station, we'll "officially" welcome the state's new 13-car passenger train sets. You're invited to the 2:30 p.m. ribbon-cutting! Get details here.
More links and history, here.


Anonymous said...

I can get to my final destination faster in my car than a train because a train can't reach my final destination. And it's less expensive.

Trains are for high population density areas where personal transportation isn't cost effective or time efficient.

James Rowen said...

So the answer is to provide no alternative, disconnect Wisconsin from the expanding Midwestern network, and continue 100% taxpayer paid highways? Where is the choice?

Anonymous said...

We already have choices with transportation to nearly every city in America - Greyhound.

James Rowen said...

No options with 100% taxpayer-paid funding? Why does your option option get 100% taxpayer planning, construction, repair, maintenance, plowing and patrolling subsidy?

Anonymous said...

My significant other got to ride the Talgo trains in Oregon on a business trip. They are very nice I guess. And fast.

Anonymous said...

Why? Good question but I would think it's because the system is primarily run with a user tax and it's the most efficient way to create and sustain commerce. We used to have a rail system only option right before the stage coach.

James Rowen said...

No one is talking about a rail-only option. Just about having the choice. Passenger rail of all kinds is used by millions of people a day in other states, and is very popular on the heavily-used Milwaukee-Chicago run.

The last time I was on that train it was standing-room-only on the return trip. Amtrak is expanding nationally. We are being left out for political, not practical reasons.