Showing posts with label san jose high speed rail station. Show all posts
Showing posts with label san jose high speed rail station. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 30, 2024

California High-Speed Rail interior renders

Below is the first preliminary render of  a dining cab and bike storage for California High-Speed Rail. I have to admit that it looks pretty inviting. I especially like the idea of a bar with a moving view. At an equal cost to a flight, I would pick the train almost every time. The high-speed trains I have taken in Europe were amazing.

The San Jose station be at Diridon and connect with Caltrain, BART, VTA Light rail, ACE, Capital Corridor, and our bus network. Unfortunately, the timeline currently involves having trains running in the Central Valley by the end of the decade. There is no ETA for service to San Jose or LA, so could be a while.

As an added bonus, below is a rendering of one of the stations (Fresno). Just a thought, we're already breaking a cost of $100 billion for this project... we probably don't need the 80-90 foot tall canopies, just a system that works.

Source: Railway News

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

RIP Apollo tower, site of proposed San Jose high-rise sold to VTA

The Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) has purchased two parcels of land that were meant to meant to become a 20-story, Las Vegas-style, 472-unit tower at the corner of Stockton Avenue and Santa Clara Street. The design was quite striking as you can see below.

The VTA is going to use this parcel for the first phase of California High Speed Rail, which might actually beat BART to Downtown San Jose. If the tower was built, the costs to complete Diridon would rise exponentially.

Hopefully this design could be reused on another Urban Catalyst project in Downtown San Jose.

Source: SVBJ

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Robot shuttles coming to San Jose, SJC and beyond

Autonomous transportation is a lot closer than most people think. It's coming in two forms: multi-purpose where autonomous cars are sharing the road with non-autonomous vehicles (Waymo, Cruise, Tesla FSD) and via dedicated pathways (Las Vegas Loop, autonomous trains/pods). 

San Jose has been struggling with how to connect SJC to Downtown San Jose's Diridon transit center just three miles away, which is destined to become the Grand Central of the West Coast. Plans have been brewing for more than 20 years, and tax dollars have already been collected. Finally, a solution has been approved using a local startup specializing in AVs (Autonomous Vehicles) called Glydways.

These autonomous pods can go up to 31 miles per hour, so they would take about 8 minutes to go from Downtown San Jose to SJC via a dedicated and potentially grade-separated path. Today the ride takes about 30 minutes on local buses. The vehicles themselves carry up to four passengers plus their luggage and are wheelchair accessible. 

The initial route would go between Diridon and Terminal B, with plans to potentially include Terminal A, nearby parking, and other future destinations in Midtown/Uptown San Jose like Valley Fair. Phase 1 would have 200 autonomous pods.

This would be a public/private partnership with the city taking on some costs and an investment group (Plenary) taking another portion. The investors would recoup their investment by charging a fee on each ride. 

The model sounds very similar to the Las Vegas Loop, which will actually be almost entirely funded privately except for a fare-less section at the Las Vegas Convention Center. That project will eventually have over 80 stations serviced by autonomous pods larger in size than what Gyldways is planning. Unfortunately, the Boring Company never responded to San Jose's RFI.

Now for the real bad news. The Glydways project is not expected to get underway until 2028 and could take years to complete--a timeline that may render the whole system obsolete by the time it arrives given how quickly transportation solutions are changing. 

We are already pouring billions into systems that are decades old (Light Rail and BART) so it's critical that this next step is something that will be scalable and move the needle on San Jose transportation for the decades to come. Hopefully there is some way to get this project going much sooner and with flexibility to incorporate innovation as the project is in motion.