This map shows where capacity will be unlocked: https://twitter.com/HS2ltd/status/1158403767756316672
And this comprehensively explains why more capacity is needed and a new high speed railway is the solution: https://medium.com/@garethdennis/high-speed-two-and-the-need...
From your article "Yet the story doesn’t seem to be getting through. As engineers, it is not just our duty to create new infrastructure, it is also our duty to communicate its purpose. Helping the British public to get behind High Speed 2 must be a priority for our industry if we are to truly make this megaproject a success."
Translation: shut up and swallow, plebs.
I'd like to know what incremental cost there is for an increment of higher speed - I bet I know the shape of that graph. If you want higher capacity, let me know why longer trains don't work.
New line yes, gouging expense for national vanity, no.
You could go for Ballast rather than Slab, which means lower install costs and slower trains, but also means higher maintenence costs, but the headline price will be lower, even though the TCO will be higher and the service will be worse.
Longer trains don't work because you'd have to demolish the towns that the stations are currently in -- extending 200m north/south at every station between Euston and Rugby is not cheap and will piss off a lot more people than building a quiet railway through an empty area, not to mention all the signal problems and points fouling, and what will you do at Euston?
> I'd like to know what incremental cost there is for an increment of higher speed
The big costs are land acquisition and earthworks, which won't change at all regardless of the speed. Euston is another cost, but you'd have to completely rebuild the station, including putting all the platforms underground, for your longer train plan - and Underground space in London isn't that easy.
So you are arguing against it when you don't know the cost?
However to be sure I'm not being unreasonabe I want to know what that curve is - am I being unreasonable to ask for information given that I'm going to be paying for HS2?
If you take a look at the construction costs, of the $6.6Bn only £665 are going towards the rail and control systems. With all other items being largely the same regardless of rail speed, I have a feeling (though I could be quite wrong), that the cost difference between low and high speed is marginal.
We need some solid stats by an independent party which is why I'm happy one is going to be looking into it.
FYI from that document, let me quote cos it's interesting: cost estimates in march 2012:
2.9 Route package cost summaries
2.9.1 The phase one total cost estimate is £16.3 billion within a cost range of £15.4 billion to £17.3 billion. [...]
2.9.2 The phase two total cost estimate is £17.1 billion within a cost range of £15.7 billion to £18.7 billion. [...]
2.9.3 The full Y network cost estimate is £33.4 billion within a cost range of £30.9 billion to £36.0 billion. [...]
That has to happen whether the trains run at 180mph or 80mph.
I suspect the numbers are more like
60mph railway: £40b
140mph railway: £50b
180mph railway: £60b
Theres also the fact that this route will have competition, against aircraft and cars, ideally it needs to be quicker than its alternatives in order to succeed.
Longer trains probably will increase capacity, but mailing around TB hard drives probably has higher bandwidth than the average internet connection. Good luck selling individuals on that 'upgrade' though.
which part of "I'll happily accept that new tracks need to be built" was unclear?
> designing it to be 250mph capable seems sensible
I understand it's not going to be run at that speed for much of its length, so what's the cost benefit?
> Theres also the fact that this route will have competition, against aircraft and cars, ideally it needs to be quicker than its alternatives in order to succeed
Interesting question whether we will have fossil-fuel powered aircraft for many decades, and as for cars it's a matter of cost. Trains are expensive now - that's where it will compete with cars; they often are already faster than cars for long distances.
> Longer trains probably will increase capacity
> but mailing around TB hard drives probably has higher bandwidth than the average internet connection
false equivalence. Trains can already be faster than cars.
Will HS2 be the world’s fastest bullet train?
[...] But HS2 told FactCheck that there are actually no plans to operate at this speed. What’s more, they say this was never the plan. Indeed, the track, control systems and trains being purchased are not physically capable of it.
The confusion has arisen because HS2 says it has allowed enough flexibility to potentially do a major upgrade of the line at some point in the distant future, should the government want to. The curves in the route could theoretically see speeds of up to 400km per hour.
So my claim taken from wiki is not incorrect but not relevant yet.
Back to your point "I don't think it's beyond the wits of engineers to work out which parts of the track need to be 250mph capable given the acceleration profile of the trains that are likely to use it"
Good point! However while the engineering of the tracks can vary the trains have to be made to run at that spec speed even if it was for 1 yard. On t'other hand, judging by the jaw-dropping price of the tracks (£104.8m per kilometre, source is same as above) perhaps the trains are the cheap bit.
OK, you are right.
That wasn't the point I was trying to make, in the quoted paragraph
Passengers may value the speed more than the capacity. If you quadrupled capacity, but halved speed would that be better or worse for the railway, or the internet?
Door to door train v car journey is more marginal that what you suggest. I would have to spend 2 hours to get to the east cost mainline. In a car I could be over halfway to London by then. And i could have the same problem at the other end. In the same way you'll never be as fast as a plane, but you don't have to turn up 2 hours early for a train.
Bandwidth is speed in most cases for the internet, lag intolerant games being an exception. Also my 10Mbit link is good enough for me despite having 100Mbit available. So the question is about comparing things which are not really comparable. Well, TBF, I can't.
> Passengers may value the speed more than the capacity
well they might, and they might want the carriages painted polkadot with hot podium dancers at each end, so how about arguing from a basis of fact instead?
from https://press.which.co.uk/whichpressreleases/rail-companies-... and with a table at the bottom. Speed is not mentioned in the report. Clearly other things really are hurting them.
As to speed vs capacity, look in the chart at 'standing room' and 'availability of seats'. That's about capacity.
> Door to door train v car journey is more marginal that what you suggest
For you I wouldn't doubt, but there's a lot of others who may feel different. Pace but arguing from 1 data point is not rigorous. I've heard of people spending £5,000 a year for their work commute (that may be reporting bias but it's another data point).
If you can't make a case then it's time to start up the PR bullshit, which uses nice words and breathless aspirations. It tends to sound like this: "Yet the story doesn’t seem to be getting through. As engineers, it is not just our duty to create new infrastructure, it is also our duty to communicate its purpose. Helping the British public to get behind High Speed 2 must be a priority for our industry if we are to truly make this megaproject a success"
Let's go through that:
"Yet the story doesn’t seem to be getting through"
"it is not just our duty to create new infrastructure, it is also our duty to communicate its purpose"
It's purpose is clear. It's a railway. So something else is going wrong with your story that you don't want to talk about.
The last sentence is content free. It says zilch.