Monday, December 03, 2007

An Excellent Question

I have never done one of these hat tip things, but Caledonia Unplugged http://caledoniaunplugged.blogspot.com/ asks an excellent question concerning Metra and KRM. Suppose Metra, with all their financial difficulties, decides to cut service to Kenosha? What assurances do we have/will we have that our Milwaukee to Kenosha train will continue on to Chicago?

35 comments:

Pariah Jeep said...

I've been asking this question as one of many for a long time! If one has a sketchy business plan, and the success of that business is inextricably linked to another business - one that is not under your control or influence - that "another" business better be rock solid. This amounts to building half a bridge. What if the other guys don't get the funding or simply decide to stop work before completion? What if they finish but then decide they can't do any maintenance and decide that because YOUR side needs theirs they can coerce YOU into paying for their side?

colt said...

Metra is losing millions a year and the IL Goverment is looking at ways to reduce costs. Ending the Run at Winthrop Harbor would save them good money guess the KRM would have to buy that too.

Gee another question the KRM folks will not answer.

Anonymous said...

Americans want what they want when they want it...how arrogant...use the majority of the earth's resources for yourselves.

I teach children that thinking only of onesself is the definition of selfishness.

Pariah...any unclever comments?

Pariah Jeep said...

Don't give these folks any ideas Colt! Flipping the cash to buy the system all the way to the state line is so expensive and unreasonable that it might actually be considered.

colt said...

I watch WGN news there is only money to run the system until mid Jan then what? If the Windy City can not pay for there system what hope does KRM have of paying the bills?
Let me guess a NONE!

A property tax is sucide fow who ever trys pushing that idea.

A County Wide sales tax will not fly enven in Racine yet alone west of I 94.

A muli-county system will be used to pay for Milwaukee.

A gas tax right what is a few pennies more?

Maybe we should get Grant Writer to write grants to the Feds after all that is free money, no one around here pays anything to the Feds right?

KRM should be allowed to die.

Anonymous said...

KRM is a viable, worthy project. That is why METRA is trying to get control of it and then lease it to the outfit that has the Skyway.

Denis Navratil said...

anon 1:46, I will have to assume that your post was some kind of joke that I did not get entirely. My understanding is that Metra wants nothing to do with KRM. And indeed that is why the project name was discreetly switched from Metra expansion to KRM. If there was any chance of a private company running KRM profitably, no doubt we would have heard from them by now.

Common Sense said...

Even if Metra dies before the kenosha link, does that make it ineffective for Wisconsin residents who'd like to utilize it for its many wisconsin stops?

Pariah Jeep, its appearant you are a novice in business. ALL businesses rely on the success of other businesses to help substantiate their own success. Do you think Microsoft would exist without hardware manufactuers? or computer monitor manufacturers? or keyboard manufacturers?...

Pariah Jeep said...

common sense - it's apparent (not "its appearant", as you wrote) that you are a novice in reading. My quote was "If one has a sketchy business plan, and the success of that business is inextricably linked to another business - one that is not under your control or influence - that "another" business better be rock solid." Is the "another business" here (Metra) rock solid?

Katrina said...

My friends there is no need for debate here. The current KRM plan calls for a stop inKenosha, as well a stop and transfer point in Wakegen, IL

Matra could save money by being more efficient but that is another story.

colt said...

Die KRM Die!

Thename of a new horror film!

The bad guy could be called Dr. Lehman the good guy Prof Voss

Katrina said...

No, no Mr. Vos is the reason for our needing a refrendom.

colt said...

Mr Voss rocks He will protect us from evil KRM

Caledonia Unplugged said...

katrina - you are somehow misinformed. KRM deadends in Kenosha without a METRA connection. KRM will not go to Waukegan.

If you do have some valued insight into cost savings or revenue enhancements for METRA, I'm sure the Regional Transit Authority would be very interested in talking to you - why don't you get in touch with them...last I heard they were $40 million in the red.


anonymous - Denis is correct. METRA wants no part of KRM because they are well aware that it will be even more of a financial drain on an already financially strapped system.

colt - I'm afraid even Vos can't protect us from KRM if the powers that be continue to push for it. The only things right now that might put the brakes on any sales tax idea are named McReynolds and Walker. However, I did read today that Rosemary Potter is no longer with Transit NOW which could signal a resignation of sorts that this project might not fly. Fingers crossed.

Anonymous said...

me thinks Katrina right, C Unplugged wrong - plan is for it to go to Waukegan also (many more daily connection possibilities there)

Caledonia Unplugged said...

katrina and anonymous:

Below is a link to the official Transit Now map - as you'll notice KRM stops at Kenosha, METRA picks up sevice there.

Not only would there be no tracks for KRM to use to extend to Waukegan, there would be no reason on earth to do so when METRA serves that area.

http://www.transitnow.org/KRM.html

Nemo said...

I find it hard to believe that the KRM is not dead and forgotten. Every similar rail solution in the country is a financial failure. Every. Single. One. For those of you that are trying to resurrect this mess please quit trying to pick someone else’s pocket to pay for your ride.

Anonymous said...

Failure?

How much do roads cost? And because of the 'right' utopian/ideological view for privatization, the civil engineers say more bridges will collapse, roads deterioate, etc...
The needs to infrastructure rebuilding in the US are estimated at 'well over' $1,000,000,000.000 (TRILLION) dollars...

When will the 'right' ever admit to the failure that their ideology of laizze faire capitalism is???

Nemo said...

Failure!

I am going to assume anon, that you are speaking of the interstate system (you can’t think that every street should be replaced with track.) The interstates move more people more efficiently that any other system. And more to the point, they are already built. If you insist on selfishly taking others money to finance your ride, why not use a bus? You won’t have to take as much and if (when) it fails the taxpayers will be out less.

Katrina said...

No I am not wrong go to this web site. Look down and to the left of the map. The two trasnfer points are Kenosha and Waukegan. If you ever rind the Metra you will see the many tracks there.

http://www.transitnow.org/documents/KRMMap-Facts061407web_000.pdf

Look for yourself.

Caledonia Unplugged said...

Katrina - you need to look more carefully. If you'll notice there is a green line and slightly darker green line (representing METRA.).

The proposed KRM line does NOT extend to Waukegan - that is the darker line, IOW METRA!

I don't know how many other ways to tell you that KRM is NOT going to Waukegan. Read the text as well - it states it will stop in Wisconsin - there are no stops in Illinois.

I'd find you hundreds of links to articles related to this, but I fear that even with that, you won't believe this, so you believe what you want, I'll believe the facts.

Katrina said...

Ok, you may be rihgt there but look here. There is nreason for this debate:

Under the Commuter Rail Alternative, at least two operational concepts will be evaluated. In addition to single-seat rides from Chicago through to Milwaukee, a more cost-effective tailoring of train capacity with ridership will also be studied by utilizing cross-platform transfers between KRM and Metra commuter trains at Kenosha and Waukegan.

Katrina said...

http://64.233.169.104/search?q=cache:bPGKjNHL9KcJ:www.mpw.net/docs/KRM/DOCS01-115357-v1-KRM%2520EIS%2520Scoping%2520Report%25201-26-06.DOC+Transfer+points+for+KRM,+WI+Waukegan,+Il&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=5&gl=us

Here is the source.

It is about 3 quarters of the way down.

PS: From now on I will check the spelling I saw the last post.

Pariah Jeep said...

Yes Katrina, there is a Santa Claus. In this case, he is bringing gifts to the consultants who will "study" this. Of course the "cross-platform transfers between KRM and Metra commuter trains at Kenosha and Waukegan" couldn't happen without spending an additional $100,000,000 or more BUT it can be STUDIED - for some fat paychecks for consultants - for say a few $million as part of the overall funding for KRM.

Katrina said...

Where do you get the figure $100,000,000 from?

Pariah Jeep said...

It is going to cost over $1,000 per FOOT to build the KRM (including equipment) from Milwaukee to Kenosha, so to actually obtain easements and build track for the 20 miles or so from Kenosha to Waukegan, I think one hundred million dollars would be a conservative estimate.

Anonymous said...

http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=692550

From Journal Sentinel
Posted: Dec. 3, 2007
TRANSIT

Make commuter rail part of the solution

There was much missing from Patrick McIlheran's Nov. 28 column ("The little engines that can't replace roads").
Advertisement

He advocated a $1.9 billion Interstate 94 rebuild while trying to make it sound as though all train advocates are against it. That is not the case. All the mass transit advocates I know are not against cars, roads and the taxing that goes with them - a necessary segment of Americana and business.

Missing was any mention of an existing track corridor to Chicago that can handle KRM commuter rail and its minimal cost compared to roads. That this was not in McIlheran's equation of the future for our territory is disheartening.

Do not compare it with the Hiawatha, which McIlheran alluded to. This line would cover several stops and does not favor Chicago only. However, Chicago and Illinois dollars would be in our network with KRM. It also would enhance the Lake Michigan corridor with a much-needed choice for business development, job opportunity and tourism.

It would not be fair to think that an inevitable 10-lane-wide road is the only answer in the 21st century. There are solutions to consolidate costs of our transit needs. One is a sales tax to remove transit and road costs from the property tax, which can result in savings.

Al Dandeneau
Caledonia

Anonymous said...

Nemo said...

I am going to assume anon, that you are speaking of the interstate system...
--------------------

The annual costs associated with roads in the US are tremendous. When people realize that they cannot spent $60.00 everytime they want to take a drive to Chicago, they will finally get it.

You guys have your heads in the sand.

Pariah Jeep said...

Two comments:

"However, Chicago and Illinois dollars would be in our network with KRM."

Chicago/Illinois are having trouble with dollars in their own Metra system. How someone can make this statement without their tongue snapping off its roller is beyond me.

"One is a sales tax to remove transit and road costs from the property tax, which can result in savings."

It doesn't matter if the money is removed from one's wallet, front pocket, piggy bank or retirement savings account, it is still removed.

Nemo said...

Anon said...

When people realize that they cannot spent $60.00 every time they want to take a drive to Chicago, they will finally get it.
--------------------

Let me see if I understand your argument. When people are tired of paying too much to drive to Chicago they will want to pay more for a less convenient and slower transportation system.

Anon, get your hand out of my wallet.

Katrina said...

There is no need for this study you speek of. The station already has tranfer tracks and platforms. Those who are trying to hide this fact are simply trying to invent a reason to stop KRM.

Pariah Jeep said...

Katrina - from your own post:

"a more cost-effective tailoring of train capacity with ridership will also be studied by utilizing cross-platform transfers between KRM and Metra commuter trains at Kenosha and Waukegan."

colt said...

Katrina

Take time when you ride the Merta to look at the tracks and talk to the workers about what it takes to get the Metra to run.
The workers should give you some idea of the work required to lay track etc.
Then you might have an understanding of what amount of work each mile of KRM requires.
I will agree that the KRM is cheep to build then a Hwy however far more will use a hightway then the handfull that will use KRM.
I could be a big KRM surporter I love trains and the engery savings they offer BUT I want to know how it will be paid for before it is build. Not some pie in the sky idea of funding but the real nuts and bolts.
KRM has gone out of there way to song and dance funding.

Common Sense said...

pariah jeep, are you Denis parading as somebody else?

So i ask you again, Even if Metra dies before the kenosha link, does that make it ineffective for Wisconsin residents who'd like to utilize it for its many wisconsin stops?

Also, "rock solid" businesses are like "free" education, it doesn't exist.

Katrina said...

It does not matter one way or the other. Does anyone read before posting around here?

Caledonia Unplugged if you look at the offical source you are the one who mistaken.