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Category Archives: Trains

For railroad/train related material.

The UAE’s first railway

As the UAE is rapidly building a freight railroad, Etihad Rail, The National takes a look back at the first railroad to operate in the country.


Now this is cool! A website in a similar vein as Expedia or Kayak that let’s you find the best rates for freight shipping. It’s called FreightOS. It actually looks very well done. Freight shipping is an awkward and clumsy process for the one-off shipment… for instance when I shipped some of my belongings from the US to the UAE. I had to rely on a shipper who kept a lot of the details and pricing very opaque.

Hopefully a competitive bidding site like this will encourage more transparency and shippers being up front with hidden charges and costs. Perhaps not though… on Kayak and Expedia the prices you find are before taxes and fees.

Still a cool idea.

Photo – NYC Hudson Model

Okay, one more fine scale model:
Just gorgeous. Here’s a link to the full details.

EPA Sulfur Cutting

The EPA wants to restrict the sulfur content of gasoline by two-thirds. According to refiners this cut, from 30 to 10 parts per million, will cost $10 billion in capital improvements… a cost that will be passed down to the consumer possibly raising the cost of gasoline by 6-8 cents.

The sulfur content cut will increase the effectiveness of catalytic converters on cars.

What bothers me about this change is that it has been tabled for 15 months in order to avoid the presidential campaign and election. If they feared that the regulation couldn’t survive the scrutiny of an election then perhaps it’s not worth the economic toll it may impose. I wish there was some concrete way to means-test all the regulations that come from the EPA.

CAHSR Links…

A slew of older links that have been sitting in my queue on the California High Speed Rail initiative:

I’m extremely pro-train. I’m a hopeless railfan. However, California is going about this all wrong. I’d love to see a successful commuter rail line between LA and San Francisco, but I doubt we’ll see that outcome under this current plan.

Straggling Links…

Some links I’ve had piling up to share for awhile…

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Photo by flickr user AK Ween.

I’m a sucker for the Warbonnet paint scheme and when I saw this photo I just had to share. Capitvating!

ASCE Infrastructure Report Card

ASCE has just released their every-4-year Infrastructure Report Card.
Bottom line :

  • America’s Infrastructure GPA: D+
  • Estimate for Investment needed by 2020: $3.6 Trillion

The New York Times gives their synopsis.
National Review’s Reihan Salam gives his quick thoughts.

I’m downloading the iPad version now.

Concrete Ties Made In The USA

A German company, Rail.One, plans on building a concrete tie factory in Iowa.

Photo – Boy And His Trains

Totally my son

Well, this is kind of a picture of trains. This is my oldest playing with this wooden train set. You are actually looking at the rear end of this train. The black locomotive is actually serving as a helper unit.

I’ll likely find ways to shamelessly post photos of my boys from time to time. This photo highlights just how much fun my boy has with this toy trains, planes, or cars. He’s reminded me of why I like transportation engineering so much… it’s just a big kid’s version of the toys I used to play with.