The Greater Utica Blog
Japan and France are much smaller, compressed countries which makes high speed rail much more feasible in both cost and use. It's like comparing the health plans of small countries with those of one of 300+ million. You just can't do it in any rational manner.
There are routes in France where TGV has an average speed of 175 mph. The bad news is that the French had to build a whole new rail system to carry it! TGV requires greater radius on the turns, deeper foundations (concrete ties, too!) and elevated crossings. The plan currently being kicked around is an extra set of rails next to the ones that are already there - no word on the foundation, crossings, turns, etc...in other words, nothing even close to supporting TGV speeds...
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