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EllisDon to Lead Prairie Link High-Speed Rail Partners - Edm-RD-Cal

I was talking with my dad about this, and he made a good point about the terminus: Strathcona is a very 'romantic' location, but doesn't have enough room for the sort of parking the station would need. If we want it to be a competitor with EIA for Calgary-Edmonton commuting and not just a place for folks who have easy access to transit or walking/biking/etc, it might need to go further south where there's more room to add parkades.
As much as I want to scoff at the parking statement, I can take a step back and see how that will be important for a sizeable portion of riders (hopefully less over time though). I'm sure that Prairie Link and the city could make it work, not by moving the station itself but maybe building a parking garage farther south on the site. This would allow all modes to be included while giving pedestrians, transit riders and other modes priority access to the station and Whyte Ave over cars!
 
As much as I want to scoff at the parking statement, I can take a step back and see how that will be important for a sizeable portion of riders (hopefully less over time though). I'm sure that Prairie Link and the city could make it work, not by moving the station itself but maybe building a parking garage farther south on the site. This would allow all modes to be included while giving pedestrians, transit riders and other modes priority access to the station and Whyte Ave over cars!
That's a very good point! And I agree, the parking situation sucks a bit, but ideally it'd be a regional destination and not all communities or regions have a transit connection with Edmonton. Perhaps there's room near the area where the capital line is being extended? It could make for a lovely connection with the Heritage Valley Station, for example. Or is that part of the line not by the CP ROW? Heck, maybe Edmonton could even chip in a bit to cover the extention of high speed rail from that southern-Edmonton terminus *to* the Strathcona station to get the best of both worlds!
 
I think as time goes on and the city moves towards it's transit oriented future parking may become less and less of a concern and ignoring the long term benefits of a station in the centre city because of the issue of parking could come back to bite us. However I do see the issue here. @Platinum107 makes an interesting point about keeping the station in the same spot and having parking further south. Perhaps a parking ride type scenario. Some kind of centralized parking facility further south and a shuttle service which takes you to and from the station. This could allow the city to reap the benefits of a walkable, transit oriented city centre station while also accomodating those who might not have good transit access.
 
This announcement makes me wonder about possible future extensions to a network in the west. Winnipeg and Vancouver would be cities that could be connected. Winnipeg may have trouble generating ridership with a lower population and lackluster transit culture however an extension eastward would include one or both of Saskatoon and Regina who could potentially make the extension possible. Vancouver is a whole different animal, it would likely have very good ridership and demand as the biggest population centre in the west and having a decent transit culture, however building through the mountains would be an absolute headache no matter how you slice it. The most likely option in my opinion would be a line that mostly follows the Yellowhead Highway going Edmonton to Jasper crossing into BC via the Yellowhead pass and dropping into the Thompson Valley to Kamloops and then following the Coquihalla to the Fraser Valley and Vancouver. A direct Calgary to Vancouver route would be a nightmare as the line would somehow need to fit into the narrow, winding and already incredibly busy Kicking Horse Pass, which would be near impossible unless the trains shared tracks with freight which would be a disaster. If that was achieved it would then need to contend with Rogers Pass which is incredibly avalanche prone not too mention also narrow and busy. So I think if Vancouver were to be connected to this network it would need to be via Edmonton and through the Yellowhead pass.

Edit: Unless they pulled a Europe and just tunneled under the mountains lol.
 
This announcement makes me wonder about possible future extensions to a network in the west. Winnipeg and Vancouver would be cities that could be connected. Winnipeg may have trouble generating ridership with a lower population and lackluster transit culture however an extension eastward would include one or both of Saskatoon and Regina who could potentially make the extension possible. Vancouver is a whole different animal, it would likely have very good ridership and demand as the biggest population centre in the west and having a decent transit culture, however building through the mountains would be an absolute headache no matter how you slice it. The most likely option in my opinion would be a line that mostly follows the Yellowhead Highway going Edmonton to Jasper crossing into BC via the Yellowhead pass and dropping into the Thompson Valley to Kamloops and then following the Coquihalla to the Fraser Valley and Vancouver. A direct Calgary to Vancouver route would be a nightmare as the line would somehow need to fit into the narrow, winding and already incredibly busy Kicking Horse Pass, which would be near impossible unless the trains shared tracks with freight which would be a disaster. If that was achieved it would then need to contend with Rogers Pass which is incredibly avalanche prone not too mention also narrow and busy. So I think if Vancouver were to be connected to this network it would need to be via Edmonton and through the Yellowhead pass.

Edit: Unless they pulled a Europe and just tunneled under the mountains lol.
I love the idea of a larger passenger rail network in Canada, especially in the west, but I believe population density doesn't help the cause. Best case scenario, we'd need Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver areas all to surpass the 5M population each, Red Deer, Kamloops and Kelowna to reach at least the 500K mark, and all of that along with transit culture and all.
The Via Rail proposal in Ontario-Quebec spans over a region with about this same population and a density that will probably never be reached in Western Canada even in our wildest dreams, and still it is a tall order.
Now, it would be awesome to see two 200km tunnels under the Rockies linking Edmonton and Calgary to the rail line in BC, but That's something almost unimaginable hahahahahahahahaha we'd need AB and BC population to be something like France and England respectively, to warrant it
 
Also for some context to my previous post about a Western Canadian HSR network spanning from Winnipeg to the West Coast I'm not trying to suggest it's feasible or even possible in a lot of cases but simply musing as to what such a network might look like if it were to exist. I should have prefaced this in the original post sorry about that.
 
I wonder what the possibility would be of extending it further south to Lethbridge? It wouldn't be feasible to include it from the beginning sure, but it is the third largest city in Alberta. It would be a shame to see it be left behind.
Well I would be a fan of that but that's because I have my family home in the crowsnest pass.
 
I wonder what the possibility would be of extending it further south to Lethbridge? It wouldn't be feasible to include it from the beginning sure, but it is the third largest city in Alberta. It would be a shame to see it be left behind.
I was actually thinking about this too! A leg of the line going to Lethbridge would definitely not happen in the first buildout, but it could in later "phases" of the HSR. The demand between there and Calgary especially (with some more development and population within Lethbridge) would further link the province and bring in more revenue for the line!
 
I was actually thinking about this too! A leg of the line going to Lethbridge would definitely not happen in the first buildout, but it could in later "phases" of the HSR. The demand between there and Calgary especially (with some more development and population within Lethbridge) would further link the province and bring in more revenue for the line!
If only Montana weren't so empty, I could see some seedlings for a North American HSR network :)
 
^^
Harbour Air has already flown an electric aircraft, plans to start regular with them in ‘23 and plans to convert their entire fleet entire fleet of 42 de havilland beaver and otter aircraft. while not westjet 737 competitors (yet), they do fly 30,000 commercial flights a year.
Fair; they already have flights to Seattle, which is just over 200 km. My preference for a train still stands here though.
 

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