Sunday, April 5, 2009 | Regarding the story about Magnetic Levitation trains being developed by San Diego’s General Atomics: High speed trains can be useful in very dense communities such as Asia, the Boston-Washington corridor, etc. Probably useful for San Diego to LAX to lessen airways congestion. Better small vehicles between many destinations in San Diego and Los Angeles.

But where are our priorities — nationally and locally? Texas Transportation Institute says San Diego wastes 200,000 gallons gas daily due to congestion, and $ 1.7 billion annually when waste time is included. Why isn’t stimulus funding concentrating on eliminating congestion rather than trains, which only a tiny share of travelers will use?

The dogma is to “get people out of cars” without identifying equivalent mobility means. Overseas countries are developing Automated Personal Transport: automobile equivalent mobility requiring a fraction of the energy and land use. Maglev fits some designs. Let’s put the effort where the problem is.

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