New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

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New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Robertrains » Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:57 am

4-5-2018
Here's another "Study" for train service between Ann Arbor and Traverse City! We keep spending "Millions" on "Studies" instead of working on the tracks!!!! :?
:shock: :shock: I would love to ride a train going 110 M.P.H. up there!!!!
:shock: :shock:

https://www.traverseticker.com/news/early-train-study-findings-support-service-from-tc-to-ann-arbor/#.WsYXDxUATGc.twitter
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby NYCMan » Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:27 am

These studies stimulate the economy by taking money out of the pockets of Taxpayers and putting that money into the pockets of the political-hack consultants who are simply mimeographing off the same old study time and time again. Give it a couple more years, and these same consultants will be espousing the position that spending billions to build a 200 MPH "mag lev" train between Detroit and Traverse City is justified and will be "profitable". The profitable part is true -- profitable for the consultants!!
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby DaveO » Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:02 am

6 million visitors today and will double by 2045. Sound great let's get going.
Or let's note that 2045 is 27 years in the future, which is an eternity when it comes to planning
How about the projections for 10 years out?

And conspicuously absent from the information in the link, the number of visitors that arrive by air travel, today and the future.
People that will never ride a train there because they live so far away that a train ride isn't a viable option.
And as someone noted in the comments at the link, a lot of those people are camping and would never ride the train because of the need to bring their shelter and toys with them.

Remove those numbers and what result would you likely get? No need to pay consultants for additional studies regarding the matter.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby TC Man » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:50 pm

DaveO wrote:6 million visitors today and will double by 2045. Sound great let's get going.
Or let's note that 2045 is 27 years in the future, which is an eternity when it comes to planning
How about the projections for 10 years out?

And conspicuously absent from the information in the link, the number of visitors that arrive by air travel, today and the future.
People that will never ride a train there because they live so far away that a train ride isn't a viable option.
And as someone noted in the comments at the link, a lot of those people are camping and would never ride the train because of the need to bring their shelter and toys with them.

Remove those numbers and what result would you likely get? No need to pay consultants for additional studies regarding the matter.


And those visitors not driving their campers are flying. Per the airport website: "...TVC is Michigan’s 4th largest airport in terms of passengers behind Detroit Metro, Gerald R. Ford, and Flint Bishop, with nonstop flights from MSP and DTW (Delta) and Chicago (American & United) year around, and seasonally from NYC-LGA (Delta & American), NYC/Newark-EWR (United), Dallas-DFW (American), Denver-DEN (United), and Atlanta-ATL (Delta). Seasonal charted service provided be Southwest Airlines and Sun Country Airlines."

So, we can keep dreaming and paying the consultants! Also, never heard of Sun Country Airlines. I've seen their 737's in TC, and Southwest with their 737's (you can miss those bright ugly planes LOL).
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Super Chief » Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:24 pm

Petosky isn't interested, that was proven with the trolley tricks they played. Much to the distress of the Perry Hotels owner they pulled the tracks 3/4 mile south of the station so the trolley could run on the remainder. The color train couldn't go downtown or the private car owners who would help their economy after they put in all the infastructure. 480v shore power, water connections and lighting. The trolley plan fizzled and they put it up for sale which last I heard isn't sold. So now its a greenspace path. Don Montieth (MARP) and I questioned the city manager on all of the above and low and behold they bought one Mackinaw City trolley bus on rubber tires to bring the ambiance that they wanted. Morons.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby PatAzo » Fri Apr 06, 2018 3:31 pm

DaveO wrote: And conspicuously absent from the information in the link, the number of visitors that arrive by air travel,


The airport says 477,000 people arrived by air in 2017. So 5.5M who came by highway.

As you look at the study and news releases you have to keep in mind train service to Traverse City is not the objective. There is a legion of consultants, activists, politicians, lobbyists who's lively hood depends on churning these ideas over and over. It doesn't matter is it trains to Traverse City, what color American cheese should be or the price of tea in China, they just need something to keep the meetings and studies going.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby M.D.Bentley » Sat Apr 07, 2018 11:45 am

PatAzo wrote:
DaveO wrote: And conspicuously absent from the information in the link, the number of visitors that arrive by air travel,


The airport says 477,000 people arrived by air in 2017. So 5.5M who came by highway.

As you look at the study and news releases you have to keep in mind train service to Traverse City is not the objective. There is a legion of consultants, activists, politicians, lobbyists who's lively hood depends on churning these ideas over and over. It doesn't matter is it trains to Traverse City, what color American cheese should be or the price of tea in China, they just need something to keep the meetings and studies going.


YES YES. Govt studies are BIG money. keep the machine turning.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Raildudes dad » Sat Apr 07, 2018 12:37 pm

I've been vocal in the past about these wasteful studies. The group that "studied' the Wally came up with $35 M IIRC to start service. Welded rail, full signals, double gated crossing protection etc etc etc when it probably could have been trialed for $5 M. Just an excuse to fill the consultants wallets and empty the taxpayers :roll: :roll:
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Saturnalia » Sat Apr 07, 2018 12:50 pm

Raildudes dad wrote:I've been vocal in the past about these wasteful studies. The group that "studied' the Wally came up with $35 M IIRC to start service. Welded rail, full signals, double gated crossing protection etc etc etc when it probably could have been trialed for $5 M. Just an excuse to fill the consultants wallets and empty the taxpayers :roll: :roll:

Thankfully another firm was able to kill that one off. The other groups are still trying but there's a nice study out there which shreds Wally so it'll be a good long time before that gains anymore traction...one would hope!

Traverse City is killed off by track conditions, traffic control, crossing protection and equipment...each one of those should be enough to prevent the project so one would think the combination of all four would mean something. But just to be sure, let's study it!
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Raildudes dad » Sat Apr 07, 2018 1:47 pm

Thankfully another firm was able to kill that one off.


Details ?
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby NYCMan » Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:47 pm

If high speed rail service between Ann Arbor and Traverse City truly had the profit potential that all of these alleged "studies" claim, then some corporation would have been built and been running the service years ago... no fancy studies needed! But, these "consultants" are paid to start with the conclusion and then manipulate the numbers to support the conclusion. REMEMBER: Statistics don't lie, but statisticians do.

One common denominator that pops up in all of these studies and the lobbying behind it, be it for AA-TC, or WALLY, or MIRAIL, is Great Lakes Central Railroad. If these commuter rail routes were so profitable, GLC would have put up their own money to build the tracks and run the service. But, instead, they are pushing to get the State (read: The Taxpayers) to pay to upgrade the rails (with lots of money going into GLC's pockets for doing so) and to run the service (with lots of money going into GLC's pockets for doing so.) I also recall just a year or 2 back that the Michigan Auditor General and the Michigan Legislature came out very critical over MDOT having paid GLC over $10 Million to refurbish and lease some old 1950s METRA bi-level cars, which cars never were used, and will likely never see revenue service.

Face it, these studies are all bunk! The ROADS in this State are ranked the worst in the USA. As things stand, the State of Michigan is having difficulty figuring out how to fund all of the road work that Michigan so desperately needs. Rather than focusing on dumping money into the Pie in the Sky high speed rail service between Ann Arbor and Traverse City, the State of Michigan should be focused on spending its dollars on fixing its delapidated roads and bridges.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby NYCMan » Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:20 pm

Now they are reporting that their study is half done. Its taken them 6 months to get half-way there, but they already are able to tell you the conclusion!

http://www.themorningsun.com/article/MS/20180414/NEWS/180419837
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby NSSD70ACe » Tue May 15, 2018 9:45 pm

Results of the study will be in by June, and apparently they look promising.

They also said that it isn’t likely that Amtrak would be the one to run it if it does happen.

I for one would love this. I hate driving up north.

http://www.record-eagle.com/news/local_ ... 0a525.html
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Saturnalia » Tue May 15, 2018 10:55 pm

NSSD70ACe wrote:Results of the study will be in by June, and apparently they look promising.

http://www.record-eagle.com/news/local_ ... 0a525.html

When you ignore the infrastructure upgrades and practical issues of running this service, I'm sure it looks good.

Once you realize that you'll need hundreds of millions to upgrade tracks, install signals, build stations, buy equipment, and operate the trains, it all falls apart.

The study team is not, in my opinion, really qualified to study this question.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Jim_c » Tue May 15, 2018 11:04 pm

It's a lot cheaper than extending either US-131 or US-31 to TC. Either of those road projects does nothing to alleviate the congestion on the roads and streets in TC. I think I read a while back that there was a proposal to run commuter rail for Williamsburg, and possibly Grawn. Trains to TC, and decent mass transit around TC may slow the expanding congestion.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Saturnalia » Tue May 15, 2018 11:08 pm

Jim_c wrote:It's a lot cheaper than extending either US-131 or US-31 to TC. Either of those road projects does nothing to alleviate the congestion on the roads and streets in TC. I think I read a while back that there was a proposal to run commuter rail for Williamsburg, and possibly Grawn. Trains to TC, and decent mass transit around TC may slow the expanding congestion.

It sounds like they need to do some road renovations then. Running a passenger train to TC from AA will do almost nothing to solve your traffic problems. Ultimately people will only take the train if they have transit at the end. And right now I'm willing to bet that TC doesn't have that infrastructure, either.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby PatAzo » Tue May 15, 2018 11:26 pm

A public-private partnership that "hopefully" doesn't require large operating subsidies isn't promising.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby TC Man » Wed May 16, 2018 10:13 am

MQT3001 wrote:
Jim_c wrote:It's a lot cheaper than extending either US-131 or US-31 to TC. Either of those road projects does nothing to alleviate the congestion on the roads and streets in TC. I think I read a while back that there was a proposal to run commuter rail for Williamsburg, and possibly Grawn. Trains to TC, and decent mass transit around TC may slow the expanding congestion.

It sounds like they need to do some road renovations then. Running a passenger train to TC from AA will do almost nothing to solve your traffic problems. Ultimately people will only take the train if they have transit at the end. And right now I'm willing to bet that TC doesn't have that infrastructure, either.


TC does have plenty of public transit. We have BATA, a public transit bus system with several regular routes in the city and metro area, and also to/from the "suburbs" (neighboring villages/towns). Those are underused like in any city. We also have 4 taxi companies, Uber, Lyft, that COULD ensure those droves of people arriving in trains get to their final destination, but I bet the farm (if I had one) that we will NEVER see regular train service here.

Also, US 31 does go right through TC, 5-7 lanes. We call it Traffic City. South Airport and Hammond Roads (also at least 5 lanes, with S. Airport divided on a portion) are our major east-west routes as well as US-31 (which is north-south and then east-west). All are constantly gridlocked. Rush hour can easily double or triple your commute.

Don’t forget that TVC airport is the 4th busiest airport in Michigan behind only DTW, GRR, and Flint. Trains here will never compete with air service.

I do see a return of the trains Michigan Northern used to run here before the TSBY/GLC days- they ran specials up here for the Cherry Festival. We get over a million people here that week. Based on Delta/American/United adding several additional flights in the summer to handle the demand, I could see a leisure tourist train bring folks up here on a Friday, taking them back on Sunday a couple times in the summer. But no fast regular train service. After all, if we move forward and implemented the service, that takes work away from the consultants that work this idea every few years.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby Super Chief » Wed May 16, 2018 11:43 am

I wonder if SRI was considering a Cherry Festival excursion last year? Sure seems that would be a gangbuster for them. The Howell & Alma festivals are profitable because 1225 is there but the color runs maybe so with GLC crews and fuel costs factored in. The casino trains aren't mentioned much anymore and they never pulled off the special veterans train they were going to have last year. Of course the Polar Express is always sold out, but a Cherry Festival train has never seem to have been on their minds. It would be most profitable with the bar and concession cars included in the mix. I know this is not possible now as no passenger movements are authorized due to track conditions.
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Re: New "Study" for train service to Traverse City!!!!

Unread postby AARR » Wed May 16, 2018 2:42 pm

You're not alone about calling it Traffic City. I go on vacation to TC about every other year. In the morning I'll jog along the water front. The cars will be so backed up that there is about a mile or two along the city that I think I'm getting ahead faster than the cars :lol: .
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