Wisconsin Talgos Disposition - MI and now Pacific Surfliner

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Wisconsin Talgos Disposition - MI and now Pacific Surfliner

Postby jackintosh11 » Sat Mar 22, 2014 9:04 am

Since the state doesn't want them, what are they going to be used for now?
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Bob Roberts » Sat Mar 22, 2014 9:28 am

jackintosh11 wrote:Since the state doesn't want them, what are they going to be used for now?


Scott Walker plans to use them to tour the country and wave at the adoring crowds gathered along the tracks as he stands in the rear vestibule during his 2016 Presidential campaign.

[is it April 1st yet?]
Last edited by Bob Roberts on Sat Mar 22, 2014 4:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Sat Mar 22, 2014 10:06 am

Send 'em back where they came from'. Scott will have a 'bon voyage' party as they are loaded on a vessel at the Port of Milwaukee and serenade them with Gordon Lightfoot' '' 'up the St. Lawrence and out to Gaspe' along with a blowviate of 'we are ridding our State of this waste representing how business used to be done here - but not anymore!!!!.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby CHTT1 » Sat Mar 22, 2014 10:24 am

they'll be sitting at the former Talgo plant in Milwaukee for many years until the lawyers are finished arguing.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Woody » Sat Mar 22, 2014 12:33 pm

jackintosh11 wrote:Since the state doesn't want them, what are they going to be used for now?

The Talgo trainsets should be auctioned off on the factory steps, with the proceeds put in escrow while the lawyers continue their important work.

Oregon should bid for them and put them to almost immediate use to add more frequencies between Portland and Eugene.

Washington should bid for them and begin a new corridor, Spokane-Pasco-Yakima-Stampede Pass-Auburn-Seattle.

These are the most logical users, since they could use the same maintenance bases as the Cascades Talgos.

Instead the badly needed capacity will waste away in Wisconsin, as a sorry tribute to the power of blind ideology in American politics.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Matt Johnson » Sat Mar 22, 2014 2:03 pm

I really wish Amtrak would send them on a nationwide tour along with the surviving RTL-III Turboliners. Maybe at least send them to Washington Union Station for National Train Day or something to let taxpayers see what they paid for even if they can't use them!
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby electricron » Sat Mar 22, 2014 2:09 pm

Matt Johnson wrote:I really wish Amtrak would send them on a nationwide tour along with the surviving RTL-III Turboliners. Maybe at least send them to Washington Union Station for National Train Day or something to let taxpayers see what they paid for even if they can't use them!

Did Amtrak (American) taxpayers pay for them, or specifically Wisconsin taxpayers? I think they should park them next to the State Capitol in Madison and let the legislators' families take a tour on them would be better advice.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Station Aficionado » Sat Mar 22, 2014 3:54 pm

We've discussed this topic before. While I really like Mr. Roberts' idea :-D, the only place in the US that it would make sense for these trains to run, given their unique maintenance and staffing needs, is the PNW (although I'm sure we will momentarily hear from those who say they should run in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Maine, etc, etc). However, contra Woody, Oregon and Washington cannot simply start running extra frequencies. The local freight roads (BNSF and UP) have final say on that, and it won't happen until infrastructure improvements (mostly paid for by the states) are complete. Likewise, running them over Stampede Pass won't happen unless that route is upgraded (even assuming that Talgos would be well-suited to the route). The best immediate option is for Oregon and Washington to buy the trains, and have them as spare equipment pending an upgrade in service. And while Mr. Norman is correct that Wisconsin could ship them to Spain, I rather doubt RENFE would take them, as they are not built to European standards.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Matt Johnson » Sat Mar 22, 2014 3:58 pm

I would totally travel to Albany to sit aboard one of the RTL-III Turboliners if they put one on display, especially if they turned it into a Turboliner experience theme park ride, with realistic sound effects and tv screens showing passing scenery in place of the windows! I'd probably even travel to Madison, WI for a similar experience aboard one of the Talgos! :)
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Sat Mar 22, 2014 4:50 pm

It would be best, Mr. Aficionado, if a domestic use could be found for this surplus equipment; if WashSt and Oregon could have used them, I'd dare say they would take them. They have a RAILPAX (less characters than passenger rail - and I don't think Amtrak ever had a service mark on that term) mind - and introduction of Talgo equipment has resulted in operational efficiencies within their service region, e.g. half hour whacked off the schedule.

As I have noted ever since the stuff was ordered, Talgo equipment is completely unsuited for the Midwest; why pay for all the 'bells and whistles' involved with their pendular suspension if there is no need for such on the virtually tangent route CHI-MKE?

But sitting in a warehouse in Milwaukee and them being property of the State of Wisconsin, Scotty can drag 'em out anytime he wants to do a 'rant on waste' - and that will not enhance the rail passenger movement - even in the areas where such results in economic and environmental benefits.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby bmichel5581 » Sat Mar 22, 2014 6:37 pm

I believe WaDot and/or ODOT is/was interested in them once the legal proceedings were hashed out. Last I heard there was some concern about not being able to use any government grant money to help with the purchase on account the Wisconsin Talgo's wouldn't fully conform to the more stringent "buy American" policies of stimulus money. Remember, Wisconsin purchased their sets completely on their own with only state DOT money....
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby electricron » Sat Mar 22, 2014 8:05 pm

bmichel5581 wrote:I believe WaDot and/or ODOT is/was interested in them once the legal proceedings were hashed out. Last I heard there was some concern about not being able to use any government grant money to help with the purchase on account the Wisconsin Talgo's wouldn't fully conform to the more stringent "buy American" policies of stimulus money. Remember, Wisconsin purchased their sets completely on their own with only state DOT money....

These trains were assembled in Wisconsin, the additional two sets they planned to buy we're included in the federal funds Wisconsin governor declined. While I agree their USA content should be carefully check, I don't see a reason why they shouldn't qualify.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby GWoodle » Sat Mar 22, 2014 9:13 pm

Not sure if anybody has been paid for them except for the workers that built them. AFAIK Talgo is waiting for payment with a case in the court for the state to do so.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Sun Mar 23, 2014 7:27 am

For ready reference, here is the previous discussion regarding the Wisconsin Talgos:

viewtopic.php?f=46&t=80907

While 'I told you so' is no way to win popularity contests, it honestly is no surprise that the saga has unfolded as it has. I foresaw all of this back in '09 with the very least being that unsuitable equipment was being ordered for a particular Amtrak route - and let it be noted that I had no crystal ball predicting that the people of Wisconsin were about to decide they wanted a Tea Party leaning Governor.
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Re: Wisconsin Talgos

Postby prr60 » Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:04 pm

electricron wrote:
bmichel5581 wrote:I believe WaDot and/or ODOT is/was interested in them once the legal proceedings were hashed out. Last I heard there was some concern about not being able to use any government grant money to help with the purchase on account the Wisconsin Talgo's wouldn't fully conform to the more stringent "buy American" policies of stimulus money. Remember, Wisconsin purchased their sets completely on their own with only state DOT money....

These trains were assembled in Wisconsin, the additional two sets they planned to buy we're included in the federal funds Wisconsin governor declined. While I agree their USA content should be carefully check, I don't see a reason why they shouldn't qualify.

Despite being assembled in the US, my understanding is that the US value of the content does not meet the current Buy American requirements. Since Wisconsin purchased the first two sets with 100% state funding, they were going to get a DOT waiver for the the second two sets needed for the Madison service. Similarly, the two Oregon sets received a waiver since Talgo's were already in service on the Cascades.
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