We wrote of the X-Train a few weeks ago. Here’s a link to an update from Richard Velotta at VegasInc today: X Train aims to make a party of the Southern California-Las Vegas trip.
This private venture is important for a number of reasons. First, it’s a bold, $100 million entrepreneurial gamble which may prove, or not, that train travel is still viable — but just as interesting, it’s not being done by a government which increasingly knows what’s best for our needs. X-Train will compete with faster and more frequent air travel — cheaper flights to Las Vegas are available from all five area airports, and San Diego. And X-Train’s 5-1/2 hour trip may be an indicator that tells us if train commuters would ever use the California High-Speed Rail which will take hours (not the 160 minutes we were originally promised) longer to transit between southern California and the Bay Area than air travel from all those same airports for as much or perhaps even more money. Otoh, maybe we’ll only find out that one needs to get hammered on the party train to pass the time and moon drivers along the I-15.
This excerpt from the article is very important to Orange County:
The southern terminus of the train route will be the Fullerton Transportation Center in Orange County. That’s a hub for Amtrak trains to San Diego, San Luis Obispo and Chicago, as well as for Metrolink, Southern California’s rail system.
As we pointed out last month, X-Train is NOT terminating at the $184 million ARTIC facility being built with Measure M tax money in Anaheim. Per their website, “ARTIC will establish a regional hub for all transit modes making it convenient for residents, commuters and visitors to utilize our transit systems,” said OCTA Chair Paul Glaab, also the Mayor of Laguna Niguel. But apparently, “all transit modes” doesn’t include the first new one to be introduced to Orange County in a generation, or those considered “interstate”.
If the X-Train’s not coming to Anaheim, that doesn’t say much in justification of the $184 million ARTIC barn, and even less for the Masters of the Universe who wanted it in the first place.