HSR station: where will it fit? | August 6, 2010 | Mountain View Voice | Mountain View Online |

Mountain View Voice

News - August 6, 2010

HSR station: where will it fit?

City officials say 3,000 parking space are needed

by Daniel DeBolt

A rough outline of what a high-speed rail station would look like in downtown Mountain View is starting to take shape, and it's going to need a lot of parking. City officials say it would require 3,000 parking spaces within a three-mile radius, among other things.

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E-mail Daniel DeBolt at ddebolt@mv-voice.com


Posted by reader, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Aug 5, 2010 at 10:51 pm

Why does HSR need to use the caltrain tracks? Is there any advantage over running it, say for example, down the center of 101 taking out the middle lanes since of course we would use far fewer cars. if this is not going to be the case, why are we spending so much to build a train that will cost more to travel than air fare and not save that much time. Is it true what I heard that caltrain, if it can continue to exist, will not be allowed to share the same tracks, but will need parallel tracks? Also, can the city afford what this will cost in redesign and rebuilding of intersections, and how it will divide the city? People seem blinded by thinking HSR is something that one must have without thinking what it brings in the incarnation presented (and there seems to be only one incarnation possible--why do we not get a vote on alternative proposals and locations?). To be realistic, the odds of there being an HSR station in Mountain View are probably low. Palo Alto, Redwood City, and San Mateo are all more probably station locations.

Posted by Estelle, a resident of The Crossings
on Aug 6, 2010 at 6:21 am

Unbelievable. Recreating the wheel. I got to go to LA. Get in the car, drive to the parking structure, park, catch a shuttle, get my ticket or check-in, wait in security lines, hope the train will be on time, take a two and one-half hour train ride, disembark, walk to the rental car agency, wait in line, get a car. Whew! Oh crap. I hope I can take a large suitcase, a carry-on, and a laptop and purse with me. Will I need a luggage cart? Am I going to have to juggle all that on a shuttle? How will I get all that on the train during it's short stop, since it is a high speed train? Will I block the aisle? What to do. Maybe I'll just fly instead. You can't beat the airline prices these days. Trains are for peons and morons. The rich and elite fly everywhere and will continue to do so, why can't I.

Passengers would likely be ferried to and from those 2,000 spaces via shuttles, Fuller said, much like long term parking at an airport.

"I would hate to see this project held hostage to historic buildings in Mountain View or anywhere else," Karney said.

No kidding?!? Like in Palo Alto where they've accepted the fact that they will make an exception and tunnel under the old trees?

Posted by eric, a resident of another community
on Aug 6, 2010 at 9:05 am

Everybody drive to your nearest really large BART station and tell me how you'd like that to be plopped in downtown. This is nuts

This is THE issue in the council race. Anyone running that isnt willing to address this issue head-on has got to go! Hold candidates accountable!

Posted by Robert McGinn, a resident of another community
on Aug 11, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Hello Mountain View Residents,

I hope this article and the replies to it ignites the process of waking MV up to what having HSR running through your downtown, and perhaps stopping in MV, will do to it. The parking structure, shuttles, large building needed, noise, added congestion, air pollution, and added competition for parking spots within walking distance will seriously alter MV. Is the gain really worth all those consequences? Be very careful before you accept the Faustian bargain. Kopp and Diridon are clever and deceptive snake oil salesmen. Do you really want your historic buildings destroyed?

The comments by "downtown resident and environmentalist BruceKarney" made me sick. He apparently is willing to go along with trashing historic MV buildings for utterly uncertain and at best small savings of carbon emissions. It's not as if HSR will remove massive amounts of cars from out roads. Moreover, if the cars and rail are not made using renewable resources, which in all likelihood they would not be, then the savings would be that much less. Karney then proposes MOVING the Adobe building district, all for a system that will cost about a tenth of a billion dollars, run at an annual operating deficit, and put California much further into debt. Sounds to me like Karney is prepared to unleash the wrecking ball on your historic district for a hugely expensive project and bring on significant new traffic congestion in order to realize carbon savings that would likely be marginal at best. Environmentalism does not require urban and financial tunnel vision!

Posted by Uncle Choo Choo, a resident of another community
on Aug 12, 2010 at 2:02 am

My sense is that the HSR snake-oil salesmen detect increasing opposition to HSR in Palo Alto so they're looking for another city in which to put their peninsula station. Guess which city they've chosen! It clearly won't be in Atherton or Menlo Park due to those cities' lawsuit against HSR. It was supposed to be in Redwood City or Palo Alto where opposition is mounting, but now they're looking at Mountain View. Am I the only one who notices the hubris of these guys coming in and saying "we're going to put our station in your city whether you like it or not, and here's what you will have to build to accomodate it"?

Mountain View, along with every city up and down the peninsula, needs to wake up and figure out what impacts HSR will have on their communities with regard to eminent domain land seizures to expand the right-of-way, and to the aesthetic effects of an elevated rail system over the existing CalTrain tracks.

The bigger picture is that HSR is based on grossly inflated ridership projections which don't even come close to reality. When ridership estimates are brought closer to reality, the system loses money and will require subsidies from California taxpayers for generations to come. With regard to construction costs, the $42 billion estimate (a huge sum in and of itself) is before the "cost overruns" which typically accompany this kind of project.

<< It's not as if HSR will remove massive amounts of cars from our roads. >>

Mr. McGinn has hit the nail squarely on the head. To Mountain View's self-styled "environmentalist" Mr. Karney, HSR will run IN ADDITION TO, not INSTEAD OF, cars and airplanes. You're living in Fantasyland if you think the airlines will simply shrivel up and stop flying, or that people will stop driving (with HSR you won't have the use of your car at your destination). HSR will be an added consumer of energy and source of pollution.

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