Friday, September 22, 2006

Trains fare robbery is not promoting sustability

Train fares are raising, much faster than inflation:
Commuters hit hard by Ken's latest fare hikes (Richmond and Twickenham Times)

Hardly a way to encourage commuting in crowded public transports, Ken?

I took the Waterloo and City line yesterday, after it's been shut for repairs for FIVE months. While I was contemplating a poster presenting the benefits of the refurbishment... while waiting for late trains (alledgedly due to hardware issues)...

Finally, I am reading this morning about Virgin Trains' attempt to break the Glasgow-London speed record by going at more than 100 mph (160 km/h). This record have been in place for 25 years. Cooincidentally, it's also the 25th birthday of the French TGV, which is now trialled for commercial speed at 360 km/h (the speed record is over 500 km/h!).

Speed alone is not what matters: high-speed trains has remapped France, relieving some of the pressure on the dense Paris area and stealing market share to air travel. This matters enormously: by gaining a 68% share on the London-Paris route, rail is proving a viable and sustainable alternative to polluting airliners.

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Thursday, September 14, 2006