I am amazed of the UK Railway System and how massive the network is

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Brystar35

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Hello everybody i had a username that was brylove7 so i came up with a new one called Brystar35 anyways nice to meet yall!!!!!!

Anyways i live in the United States in the state of Florida and we don't have alot of Railways here, the major ones here in Florida is Amtrak and Tri-Rail where i live in South Florida, while there is also Freight with CSX and Florida East Coast Railway.

I want to say that i am amazed on how massive the UK Railway system is and how very important it is and its being invested in it alot with the Modernization and Electrification of major Main Lines like the Great Western Main Line, Midland Main Line, etc.

It is amazing that someone can travel across the country so easily, lets say from London to Glasgow takes 3 to 4 hours thats amazing thats the same kind of trip from Miami to Orlando, plus i am amazed the British Trains can regularly go over 100 mph with most of the Mainlines and a bit more, while the high speed Railways we have is the Acela Express which is in the Northeast and regularly it hits 90-100 mph but it goes high speed for 15 miles only about 150 mph, and outside of the Northeast the highest is around 90-110 mph but in small segments.

It just makes me amazed on how the Government sees the Railways as very important in the UK, here in the USA poor Amtrak is being constantly attacked by the politcs here and it sucks but Amtrak tries its best to work with what they have and they do a great job.

I don't know if this was the right thread for it, but its just i find it amazing lets say i am a fan of Britain Railway history and Aerospace, and i am an American, i hope i get to travel to the UK one day and get to travel to many places in the UK like Micheal Portillo does in the Great British Railway Journeys show.
 
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70014IronDuke

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Hello everybody i had a username that was brylove7 so i came up with a new one called Brystar35 anyways nice to meet yall!!!!!!

Anyways i live in the United States in the state of Florida and we don't have alot of Railways here, the major ones here in Florida is Amtrak and Tri-Rail where i live in South Florida, while there is also Freight with CSX and Florida East Coast Railway.

I want to say that i am amazed on how massive the UK Railway system is and how very important it is and its being invested in it alot with the Modernization and Electrification of major Main Lines like the Great Western Main Line, Midland Main Line, etc.

It is amazing that someone can travel across the country so easily, lets say from London to Glasgow takes 3 to 4 hours thats amazing thats the same kind of trip from Miami to Orlando, plus i am amazed the British Trains can regularly go over 100 mph with most of the Mainlines and a bit more, while the high speed Railways we have is the Acela Express which is in the Northeast and regularly it hits 90-100 mph but it goes high speed for 15 miles only about 150 mph, and outside of the Northeast the highest is around 90-110 mph but in small segments.

It just makes me amazed on how the Government sees the Railways as very important in the UK, here in the USA poor Amtrak is being constantly attacked by the politcs here and it sucks but Amtrak tries its best to work with what they have and they do a great job.

I don't know if this was the right thread for it, but its just i find it amazing lets say i am a fan of Britain Railway history and Aerospace, and i am an American, i hope i get to travel to the UK one day and get to travel to many places in the UK like Micheal Portillo does in the Great British Railway Journeys show.

Hello Brystar35 and welcome to the group. It's very interesting to get an 'outsider's' point of view - very refreshing. Of course, many in the UK spend half their lives attacking the British railway system too - but indeed, it is an amazing and varied network still today. (Oldies, who remember the truly astonishing variety of trains, track and operations still around in the 50s and early 60s, inevitably lament those times.)

Of course, the distances and population densities in Britain, along with the historical developments, have lent themselves to what we have today. (I don't think it's by chance that the US network has such relatively bright spots as the NE corridor - where distances are in the 100-200 0300 mile category.)

But yes, people, including rail folk, often take for granted a system which consistently delivers hundreds of thousands of passengers safely (incredibly safely, actually) and usually within 10 -15 minutes of advertised time on a daily basis.

Hope you can come over some time. But be warned, you could spend 2 months just visiting the preserved lines!
:roll:
 

Clansman

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Hello everybody i had a username that was brylove7 so i came up with a new one called Brystar35 anyways nice to meet yall!!!!!!

Anyways i live in the United States in the state of Florida and we don't have alot of Railways here, the major ones here in Florida is Amtrak and Tri-Rail where i live in South Florida, while there is also Freight with CSX and Florida East Coast Railway.

I want to say that i am amazed on how massive the UK Railway system is and how very important it is and its being invested in it alot with the Modernization and Electrification of major Main Lines like the Great Western Main Line, Midland Main Line, etc.

It is amazing that someone can travel across the country so easily, lets say from London to Glasgow takes 3 to 4 hours thats amazing thats the same kind of trip from Miami to Orlando, plus i am amazed the British Trains can regularly go over 100 mph with most of the Mainlines and a bit more, while the high speed Railways we have is the Acela Express which is in the Northeast and regularly it hits 90-100 mph but it goes high speed for 15 miles only about 150 mph, and outside of the Northeast the highest is around 90-110 mph but in small segments.

It just makes me amazed on how the Government sees the Railways as very important in the UK, here in the USA poor Amtrak is being constantly attacked by the politcs here and it sucks but Amtrak tries its best to work with what they have and they do a great job.

I don't know if this was the right thread for it, but its just i find it amazing lets say i am a fan of Britain Railway history and Aerospace, and i am an American, i hope i get to travel to the UK one day and get to travel to many places in the UK like Micheal Portillo does in the Great British Railway Journeys show.

Welcome to the Forums!
Nice to hear an outsider point of view which many of us (includsing myself) just take for granted. We are a world a way from the American railways sadly as you guys would benefit from further investment, hopefully you get across the Atlantic soon.
I gather that you said Amtrack is currently in a poor state, may I suggest they take the Pacers and Voyagers from us for more frequency... Please! ;)
 
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Brystar35

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Thank you kindly for welcoming me to the group i like the name Brystar better then Brylove.

Well i would say that Amtrak does get some investments but some Railway routes that Amtrak operates is at the mercy of the Freight Railways like Union Pacific, BNSF, Norfolk Southern, CSX to say the few big ones and well Amtrak only owns a small portion of would otherwise be a huge Rail network.

I am not sure if us Americans would like the Pacers although we are getting new DMU's for small Regional Railway systems like the Sprinter in California (which was nice to ride on when i was in California), plus our Railway system is how you say Our trains are much bigger and more heavier thus we do have an impressive Freight Railway system in which we do have double stacks and also all Railways have to be built with a very high Standard because we have alot of grade crossings, even in the Northeast there is still some sections that have grade crossings and its electrified.

Also about Voyagers we can take them but we have to upgrade them to withstand collisions among grade crossings trust me the FRA (Federal Railroad Administration) would have to do massive rebuilding with the Pacers and Voyagers here.

Our electrification network is very small compared to the UK and its growing even bigger from what i been seeing and hearing, Only the Northeast Corridor, one of Chicago commuter rail line, the new Denver Commuter lines which will be active soon, Keystone Corridor from Philadelphia to Harrisburg are electrified with overhead wires.

And yall have a very impressive Third Rail Regional Rail network as well the ones i know that is Third Rail is the Long Island Railroad and Metro North Railroad in the New York City Area or the Tri-State area of the Northeast USA.

I would love to travel to the UK and i don't mind if it takes me two months or more i think its a beautiful country and traveling by Rail is very fantastic and Gorgeous with alot of rich history in many places the Railways go, I am an Historian by the way well in the fact i love Railway and Aerospace history and one of my favorite UK programs is the "Great British Railway Journeys" with Micheal Portillo.
 
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GrimsbyPacer

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I think Amtrack is doing a great job with what it's got and the UK could do with a nationalised railway too.

The Acela trains, and Superliners are very cool.
The UK is just old British Rail trains most of the time. (Splinters, Pacers, HSTs, etc).
We need the new version of these trains nationally and private companies are not the answer.
 
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theageofthetra

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Do they still have the train that brings the East Coast snowbirds with their cars down to Florida-it had a cinema on it too if I recall. Really enjoyed the railroad museum near Miami last time I was there too.
 

sprinterguy

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The UK is just old British Rail trains most of the time. (Splinters, Pacers, HSTs, etc).
What, you mean other than all those Turbostars, Electrostars, Desiros, Coradias and Adelantes, Meridians, Voyagers and Pendolinos? ;)

Of course it depends where you are in the country as to how many of those you'll come across, but give it until the end of the decade and there'll be a good deal fewer Pacers and HSTs, too, following deliveries of new stock.
 

yorksrob

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In response to the OP, yes, it is a very impressive and useful network, and it's only by resistance to the whims of Central Government over the past sixty years or so that it is as extensive as it is.

Many in the Establishment would have preferred it to be much much smaller.

Unfortunately far too much of it was torn up, leaving many missing links from the network.
 
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Bushy

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We recently travelled the California Coast route on Amtrak from LA to Santa Barbara and Santa Barbara to Oakland for San Francisco. LAX to SBA is about 90 miles and is timetabled to take 2 hours, SBA to OKJ is about 320 miles and timetabled to take 8 hours. The thing we noticed was the dwell time at stations, typically 10 - 15 minutes. The route is mainly single track so there is waiting at passing loops to add in to the equation. The scenery, however is incredible and worth having the time to take in. Due to its location on a peninsula there is no main line railway into San Francisco so we had a fairly long connecting bus journey at 10 pm to get to our hotel. We were fortunate that the street where our stop was located was closed for roadworks so the driver took us direct to our hotel.
 
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Brystar - hello and welcome. Many folks around the UK enjoy the Michael Portillo travel programmes - some of us have even chanced upon him on a train whilst filming (I count myself among them). Have you seen his latest series entitled 'Great American Railroad Journeys'?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06zzdn3

It's been interesting to learn something of the development of the railway network in the USA and it's effects on the nation.
 

Envy123

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Coming from the massively overcrowded Moscow roads, and going between the "dacha" (country house) and the city can take up to 3 hours one way, the UK rail system seems like heaven in comparison. The Moscow social planners are slowly but steadily building rail links between the popular commuter towns and Moscow, as well as metro extensions, but that will take ages to finish.

With those thoughts in mind, I appreciate the UK rail system for what it is, despite its flaws.
 

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Refreshing indeed - although our public transport system does come in for a lot of slack (and rightly in many cases!), it is perfectly possible to do without a car in many places - something which I doubt is true of many places in the US outside of the big cities (and then mostly just the East Coast).
 

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Refreshing indeed - although our public transport system does come in for a lot of slack (and rightly in many cases!), it is perfectly possible to do without a car in many places - something which I doubt is true of many places in the US outside of the big cities (and then mostly just the East Coast).

Checking out of a hotel in Dallas I recall the incredibly funny look I got when I said I didn't need a taxi and was going to get the bus.
 

AM9

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Checking out of a hotel in Dallas I recall the incredibly funny look I got when I said I didn't need a taxi and was going to get the bus.

Many years ago I was staying in a hotel outside Chicago for 4 weeks. One day we decided to go the the 711 that we could see on the far side of the car park, (say 300 yards). When we got there, they were surprised that we arrived on foot!

My rail experience of the US is mainly around NYC and acrosss to Boston. The 4 1/2 hour journey to Boston seemed like a trip to Edinburgh up the ECML with about 8 long stops at various New England towns (cities?). Comfortable compared to the Subway or the Metro North Westchester commuter line, but still lumbering and bumpy at times. Good scenery and Wi-fi though!
Compared to UK, it was an 'occasion', what with the chaos that is (NYC) Penn. Central and the ever changing views. A trip in the UK, whilst just as pleasurable (usually) is also more a means to an end, i.e. to get somewhere.
 

The Ham

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Refreshing indeed - although our public transport system does come in for a lot of slack (and rightly in many cases!), it is perfectly possible to do without a car in many places - something which I doubt is true of many places in the US outside of the big cities (and then mostly just the East Coast).

I have a great aunt who went to visit relatives in the US and as was her way went for an afternoon walk. She got picked up by the police and returned home for her safety as that is not the sort of thing older ladies should be doing.

With that sort of level of cultural difference in attitudes it is not surprising that car ownership rates in the US are much higher and why their (passenger) rail system is very different (and much smaller) than the one we have here in the UK.
 

TheEdge

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With that sort of level of cultural difference in attitudes it is not surprising that car ownership rates in the US are much higher and why their (passenger) rail system is very different (and much smaller) than the one we have here in the UK.

Freight has always been king of the US railways (and still is). Most of them, especially outside the North East, really begrudgingly carried passengers and when it was decided railways didn't have to carry people some services simply dumped the passengers where they were.

Ergo Amtrak has always been a bit of a pariah.
 

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Having studied American Politics at Undergraduate level I am interested in American Rail Policy which is different than here in the UK the obvious difference is that Amtrak is nationalised whereas the UK has Franchises and private operators.

Amtrak from what I gather is not only dependent on money from the traveller but also state and federal funding. I did not cover the budget and appropriations process and it is something I want to know more about. The only thing I do know is there are number of players both within the Executive branch (OMB, Departments etc) and the Legislature (Committees, Sub-Committees and the floors)

2016 is an Election year in America and the only thing I have heard is about infrastructure and improving it.

As I have said I am interested in American Rail Policy but I have now where to start, can someone point in the right direction?
 

Clansman

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Why not... we flogged the 141's to Iran. :roll:

...and even they thought the Pacers were not fit for standard. What ended up becoming of the 141s that went to Iran? Set alight and destroyed I hope, and do hope for the currently operating pacers. I could just picture everybody on this forum who dislikes the Pacers roasting marshmallows over a Northern 142 :D
 

Domh245

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Having studied American Politics at Undergraduate level I am interested in American Rail Policy which is different than here in the UK the obvious difference is that Amtrak is nationalised whereas the UK has Franchises and private operators.

Amtrak from what I gather is not only dependent on money from the traveller but also state and federal funding. I did not cover the budget and appropriations process and it is something I want to know more about. The only thing I do know is there are number of players both within the Executive branch (OMB, Departments etc) and the Legislature (Committees, Sub-Committees and the floors)

2016 is an Election year in America and the only thing I have heard is about infrastructure and improving it.

As I have said I am interested in American Rail Policy but I have now where to start, can someone point in the right direction?

IIRC, the only Amtrack infrastructure is the north-east corridor - all of their other services operate over private (often freight) lines.
 

Up_Tilt_390

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If you like this island's railway across the Atlantic because of their density, size and busyness, then you may also like another island's railway across the Pacific for the same reason. Japan has similar railways to the UK because of it's density, size, busyness and even has a lot of engineering similarities. I love Japan's railway because of it's efficiency too, and it's train are very unique.

Welcome to the forums btw :)
 

krus_aragon

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...and even they thought the Pacers were not fit for standard. What ended up becoming of the 141s that went to Iran? Set alight and destroyed I hope, and do hope for the currently operating pacers. I could just picture everybody on this forum who dislikes the Pacers roasting marshmallows over a Northern 142 :D

Are you suggesting a Pacer pyre party? :)
 

Brystar35

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Thank you for the Welcomes i really appreciate it. I was wondering if this is the right Thread to post things in for this topic or not?

Anyways our car ownership is very high in the USA, and we have a super highway system first started during the Eisenhower era in the 1950's and the USA has a huge Aerospace sector as well, i don't know if the UK yall have a high car ownership?

But i am amazed Rail reigns supreme in the UK while alot of people here the Politics don't seem to like Railways or see it as old timers thing at least Politics here in Florida.

About Japan yes they have an amazing history of their Railways and they first came out because an American came to Japan with a Railway but yes i do agree that Japan and British are very familiar in that there both Islands, also isn't Hitachi building the British Rail Class 800 and 801 which are both impressive and beautiful looking EMU's.
 

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Many years ago I was staying in a hotel outside Chicago for 4 weeks. One day we decided to go the the 711 that we could see on the far side of the car park, (say 300 yards). When we got there, they were surprised that we arrived on foot!

Checking out of a hotel in Dallas I recall the incredibly funny look I got when I said I didn't need a taxi and was going to get the bus.

I have a great aunt who went to visit relatives in the US and as was her way went for an afternoon walk. She got picked up by the police and returned home for her safety as that is not the sort of thing older ladies should be doing.

Despite these amusing anecdotes, and of course stories such as the GM streetcar conspiracy, I think that within lots of urban areas in the US, public transportation operation, infrastructure and policy is streets ahead of most things we have in the UK, even allowing for the lower population densities.
 
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