USA Aspires to Build Rail Service Worse than the 1940s

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USA Aspires to Build Rail Service Worse than the 1940s

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America Aspires to One Day in the Far Future Build Rail Service Worse Than It Was in the 1940s
Amtrak has a bold vision for the future: slower trains than the days before color television... Politicians love to talk about American exceptionalism—that America is the greatest country in the world—as well as the growing need to be increasingly competitive with other economic powers, most especially China. But no topic humbles both concepts quite as much as trains, where America is neither great nor competitive. The degree to which the U.S. lags compared to high-speed passenger rail networks in Europe, China, Japan, and even Morocco is well-documented. What’s less well-documented is how the U.S. struggles to compete with a different type of foreign country: the United States about 80 years ago... There are several routes where trains were faster in the 1940s and 1950s than Amtrak hopes to achieve in 2035...

there are two main reasons for the slower travel times. First, Amtrak trains often have to make more stops than their pre-Amtrak counterparts... The second reason has to do with track priority... “Amtrak’s host railroads often do not prioritize Amtrak trains over their freight trains, even though that is required by law”...
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