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3 minutes ago, Busjack said:

Actually, not even close to proposals. This was denominated as "Request for Qualifications," which sounded something like "I'm Elon Musk and I have $2 billion in spare change to do ....` Then, if anything sounds responsive, the city will request proposals.

I somehow missed that, probably because "proposals" was in the headline. At any rate, the project hasn't advanced substantially.

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3 minutes ago, Pace831 said:

I somehow missed that, probably because "proposals" was in the headline. At any rate, the project hasn't advanced substantially.

My conclusion was based more on the Tribune, but the point is made in the third paragraph of the story to which you linked.

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3 minutes ago, Busjack said:

My conclusion was based more on the Tribune, but the point is made in the third paragraph of the story to which you linked.

It will be interesting to see what, if any, response this gets. My gut feeling is that this is mostly a ploy by Emanuel to keep this in the news. For the potential respondents, this seems like too much of a high cost, high risk scenario with questionable potential for profit, especially if they are serious about "no public funding". So my bet is that interest is low.

This is Elon Musk's chance to show whether he is serious about his tunnel boring machine, or if he was just building up hype to attract investors (I suspect the latter).

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10 hours ago, Pace831 said:

This is Elon Musk's chance to show whether he is serious about his tunnel boring machine, or if he was just building up hype to attract investors (I suspect the latter).

He actually is doing something in Los Angeles (story; official reference)..Now, how far he gets in LA, and whether he can figure out a way to get the billions back here, we'll have to see.

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As I understand what was done before, the Block 37 station would somehow be fed by the Red Line and share existing tracks with the Blue Line to O'Hare.

It was the connection from the Red Line that blasted the Washington station, though the Washington platform itself has since been restored.

I still don't see how that was supposed to work without some serious interference with Blue Line service.

Is there some missing piece I'm unaware of? Or did they really undertake all that construction assuming it would all work out later somehow?

 

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3 hours ago, Passenger said:

As I understand what was done before, the Block 37 station would somehow be fed by the Red Line and share existing tracks with the Blue Line to O'Hare.

It was the connection from the Red Line that blasted the Washington station, though the Washington platform itself has since been restored.

I still don't see how that was supposed to work without some serious interference with Blue Line service.

Is there some missing piece I'm unaware of? Or did they really undertake all that construction assuming it would all work out later somehow?

 

The real problem was that Carole Brown and Ron Huberman (or maybe Frank Kruesi) were missing something.

The connection between the subways was because the express was supposed to go to both Midway and O'Hare, and the Midway segment would go from the State St. subway up the incline to the Orange Line track.

The Blue Line issue was supposed to be resolved by either building bypass tracks around some of the stations on the elevated Milwaukee portion of the Blue Line, or routing the portion from downtown to Jefferson Park on an elevated structure over the UP NW. Past Jefferson Park, they would move the expressway outward to allow for 4 tracks.

I mention Carole Brown (then chairperson of the CT Board) because when this consultant's report (which got a lot of press) came out in about 2006, she said she couldn't support it if it interfered with CTA service, but that the Block 37 station could proceed because there was already a hole in the ground and it would provide another connection between the Red and Blue lines. Then, there were cost overruns, Mayor Daley babbled something about switches being obsolete and high speed trains, and Huberman finally said to complete the shell and mothball it.

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The way they make it sound they virtually have an express train now. If they can run union station to o'hare Metra does that already. It doesnt take much imagination to run express on three tracks the trick would be bidirectionally. They would have to have bypasses but the metra milwaukee west line travels through two train yards so it's an interesting idea. I think it would just be too ridiculous to run through the blue line now.

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10 minutes ago, BusHunter said:

The way they make it sound they virtually have an express train now. If they can run union station to o'hare Metra does that already.

The problem with that, which has been mentioned frequently,* is that the CN won't allow any more passenger trains on the NCS tracks, which it owns. Whether it would even allow a monorail to be built over its right of way is questionable (cf. CP complaining about building the tollway over its yard).

 

________

*See previous page.

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I'm sure they could incorporate some existing Metra service to go express to the airport and then to antioch. Not many additional trains would be needed. Why run local anyway along the milw west. It can do the local.

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47 minutes ago, BusHunter said:

I'm sure they could incorporate some existing Metra service to go express to the airport and then to antioch. Not many additional trains would be needed. Why run local anyway along the milw west. It can do the local.

Mr. Emanuel does not believe in Metra, except when Oberman ran it. But I'm sure you could pass the idea over to Ginger Evans, who seems to be in charge.

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Well the press release said that any service would be viable even from union station so I'm assuming he's not talking about the cta.

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9 minutes ago, BusHunter said:

Well the press release said that any service would be viable even from union station so I'm assuming he's not talking about the cta.

He definitely isn't (Carter didn't attend), but it is also clear from the coverage that the city is looking for a private entity to put up the money. Metra is broke, which certainly eliminates it from responding to the request for qualifications.

Even the Press Release itself says:

"... the RFQ stipulates that the O'Hare Express Service will be funded solely by project-specific revenues (like fares or advertising) and financed entirely by the concessionaire. There will be no taxpayer funding for the project."

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2 hours ago, BusHunter said:

I'm sure they could incorporate some existing Metra service to go express to the airport and then to antioch.

Well, come back to me when they be like UP-W and N by adding an extra track to generate more express trains! 9_9 As much as I hate CN/CP, they will never allow that to happen. Oh Canada...... xD

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13 minutes ago, garmon757 said:

Well, come back to me when they be like UP-W and N by adding an extra track to generate more express trains! 9_9 As much as I hate CN/CP, they will never allow that to happen. Oh Canada...... xD

And to get back to my last reply to @BusHunter, Metra or CN aren't going to finance it. If you want to go to the consultant's report I cited in reply to @Passenger, it also said it would have to be privately financed. I assume the reason for that conclusion is that the feds were not going to give grants for something that was essentially not public transportation.

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So, if I am correct. This will NOT be funded by taxpayer money? 

as said here....

"Fortunately for Chicago taxpayers, Emanuel isn't betting their money on rosy assumptions about demand or any other unpredictable financial variable. He's proposing a privately funded and operated system, with no public financing. Assuming the city offers no backstop against cost overruns or operating deficits, the private operator would bear all the financial risk. (Paragraph 10 Crain's Chicago Business)"

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44 minutes ago, Busjack said:

And to get back to my last reply to @BusHunter, Metra or CN aren't going to finance it. If you want to go to the consultant's report I cited in reply to @Passenger, it also said it would have to be privately financed. I assume the reason for that conclusion is that the feds were not going to give grants for something that was essentially not public transportation.

Bingo! 

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10 minutes ago, TransitXan17 said:

So, if I am correct. This will NOT be funded by taxpayer money? 

That's what the quoted Press Release from the Mayor's office said (see above).

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15 hours ago, garmon757 said:

Bingo! 

So then they are at a stalemate. Let's get real folks if they can't use existing infrastructure how will this get funded. They can't even build the Dan Ryan extention. Elon Musk would probably be more Interested in a automated drone service than this. Flying through the air needs no infrastructure lol!!

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38 minutes ago, BusHunter said:

Elon Musk would probably be more Interested in a automated drone service than this.

Apparently you are not familiar with the very boring The Boring Company.

What seems most analogous to this is under "Which projects are in the works?"

The Boring Company is working with federal and state officials on a DC-to-Baltimore route, which would then be extended to New York.  In a promising first step, the State of Maryland has granted permission for 10.1 miles of tunnel beneath the state-owned portion of the Baltimore-Washington Parkway. (emphasis added)

What seems analogous, Musk could get the rights to bore under the Kennedy Expressway, and then the only issue is how he gets his $3 billion (my estimate) back, but that's his business.

The other notable thing there is:

Loop is a high-speed underground public transportation system in which passengers are transported on autonomous electric skates traveling at 125-150 miles per hour. Electric skates will carry between 8 and 16 passengers (mass transit), or a single passenger vehicle.

Again, getting back to the 12 year old or so consultant's report, the proposal was to use a 2 car set of 5700s, with one car set up to haul about 12 passengers. So, his idea of mass transit isn't much different than that, except he isn't wasting a train that could haul 180 commuters.

And, as I previously noted, The Boring Co. is already boring tunnels for LA LRTs.

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Yeah but how successful will this be? I can't help but think of Boston's big dig where there were many cost overruns and the project moved at a snail's pace. When digging underground there are many unforeseen obstacles such as utilities and such. Actually a sky service is actually more smart and it will be the wave of the future in about 15 years. With capabilities of 500 mph it could even put the airlines in jeopardy. Check this out you could actually be running an express service to a dinosaur service that is no longer viable except for maybe intl. Flights.

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2 hours ago, BusHunter said:

Yeah but how successful will this be? I can't help but think of Boston's big dig where there were many cost overruns and the project moved at a snail's pace. When digging underground there are many unforeseen obstacles such as utilities and such. Actually a sky service is actually more smart and it will be the wave of the future in about 15 years. With capabilities of 500 mph it could even put the airlines in jeopardy. Check this out you could actually be running an express service to a dinosaur service that is no longer viable except for maybe intl. Flights.

Meet the Jetsons?

  • Haha 1

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3 hours ago, BusHunter said:

Yeah but how successful will this be? I can't help but think of Boston's big dig where there were many cost overruns and the project moved at a snail's pace.

But it is on the private concessionaire's dime, not MassDOT's or, more in point 10 years ago, CTA's. I don't think you get the point that the only "public" in this project is giving the private entity the opportunity to put its capital at risk.

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