A sampling of complaints from people I follow on Twitter, not in the planning/urbanist biz, about air travel, from today alone:
As air travel becomes more and more of a horribly unpleasant, unreliable hassle, and highway congestion inexorably increases, people are going to start looking for alternatives. The only question is whether we make our intercity transportation system grind to a halt before recognizing that, or whether we can catch ourselves before the crash.
After flying to both Ann Arbor and Athens, GA I temporarily started supporting HSR from New York to both areas (to Detroit with a regional rail connection to Ann Arbor, and to Atlanta via Athens). Some flights put me in “fuck cost-effectiveness, I want high-speed rail” mood.
Yeah…I think people flying out of midsize airports have it the worst. Always connecting through a hub sucks. Given how airlines do scheduling aircraft and crew assignment these days, the system is so fragile, and every connection just increases the chance something will get fucked up.
I flew direct in both cases, to Detroit and Atlanta. At Detroit I got a taxi to Ann Arbor. At Atlanta they had a shuttle. Door to door it was substantially longer than HSR would’ve been; if HSR didn’t serve Athens but went direct on I-85, it still wouldn’t have been much slower than flying.