jon, avatar


What they should do:
Build a tram

What they’ll likely plan to do:
Build a maglev

What they will actually do:

Because they will conclude the maglev doesn't work, but in the meantime they will run out of budget, and not build the tram either

nilspickert, avatar

@jon and in the north of Nürnberg the Stub (an overland tram extension to Erlangen and Herzogenaurach) is in planning. During the planning they found out that it will probably have more users than proginally planned, so we need to plan more now. When the planning is planned, then the Nimbys will start to sue against the planning. The we plan some more again. Then everybody will decide that autonomous cars will come next year and we do not need it anymore. Then budget runs out.

slothrop, avatar


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  • vogelchr, avatar

    @slothrop @nilspickert @jon Yes, literally "Flugtaxis" (flying taxis), another crazy idea made up by ministers from the regional flavor (CSU) of the major German conservative party (CDU): Andreas Scheuer (then minister for traffic and digital infrastructure) and Dorothee Bär (then, commissioner for digitization).

    nblr, (edited ) avatar

    @jon The curious thing... in Nürnbergs case it's not a plot to prevent public transport but genuine dimwittery. Söder will do everything to "bring glory to Nürnberg". He is emotionally deeply invested in this city which also is my home town. I have been suffering this clown for the better part of my life and have no reason to doubt that Söder believes in maglev being a solution.

    StephanMatthiesen, avatar

    I agree. The city council now actually does support trams and an extension to Stadtpark is being reactivated right now with more plans for new/reactivated lines.

    The Maglev is a Schröder idea and I don't think the city planners are particularly happy. The CSU (with the mayor) will never oppose Söder, but they are not alone in the council coalition.

    And there's corruption as the local CSU is linked to the local construction mafia, see the "Future Museum".

    So it's complicated.


    StephanMatthiesen, avatar

    @nblr @jon
    A maglev would perhaps make more sense for the planned Stadt-Umland-Bahn which will connect Nürnberg, Erlangen, Herzogenaurach (home of Adidas and Puma), considering that it has to run on stilts anyway for a considerable section as it crosses the river valley.

    But it's alread being planned as a tram (which is good) and if they now start to replan it as a maglev, we would lose many years for fairly dubious advantages, so better not think about it...

    nblr, avatar

    @StephanMatthiesen @jon
    Looking forward to see how the Tram-to-Erlangen thing turns out. For some chapter in my life I used the 30 Bus on a daily basis during winter and the bike path during summer.

    (Also strange to see my former bank representative running the city, winning over an old schoolmate)

    bluGill avatar

    @jon The debate should be bus, tram, or metro (ubahn). With the population I don't see any need for a tram - just run regular busses frequently and you will not run out of capacity that isn't better solved by adding a route serving a slightly different path. A metro (elevated ideally) can run fully automated and faster since it avoids traffic - this might be a good investment in the long term.

    pthane, avatar

    @jon Maglev does work but it costs more to build and operate and doesn't provide benefits commensurate with the extra cost.

    jon, avatar

    @pthane Right. Totally. It is proven to work. But whether you ought to build one is another question!

    christianschwaegerl, avatar

    @jon Aber es gibt doch schon eine Maglev-Strecke im VGN von Sengenthal-Südrand Abz Greißelbach an den Waldrand beim Badesee. Muss nur verlängert werden ;-)

    _RyekDarkener_, avatar

    I think this is a well known and good working form of sabotage.

    jon, avatar

    @_RyekDarkener_ Sure, but it still has to be pointed out once in a while!

    zeitverschreib, avatar

    @jon I'm no expert, but isn't the biggest advantage of a MagLev its speed?

    Why would any vehicle on that route need such a v/max?

    bluGill avatar



    Not really. The record for Maglev is faster than the record for regular rail - but not be a significant amount. In real world service again maglev is faster, but not by much. The fastest maglev services only run their fastest speeds in the busiest part of the day as the real limit is aerodynamics and so the cost of running at speed means they avoid doing it.

    jon, avatar

    @zeitverschreib There are essentially 2 versions - there is a lower speed version used in some airports in Japan. But it's still non sensical.

    nehalem501, avatar

    @jon This is like all the "innovative" SNCF ideas to run old small rural lines where for them everything seems better than running actual trains.

    jon, avatar

    @nehalem501 Indeed. Totally. It's an excuse to channel money to German industries, and then also in the end not challenge the car.

    martijn_geerdes, avatar

    @jon The maglev is becoming the hyperloop? A fata morgana to stop train / tram / public transport development.

    bluGill avatar



    I wouldn't go that far. Maglevs are not science fiction - they work in the real world.

    They are not worth building in the real world. They are slightly cheaper to operate at high speeds are slightly cheaper to operate, (more expensive at lower speeds though), but aerodynamic drag is the limit to high speed not steel wheels on tracks so the difference will never be large. The inability to run on the regular tracks you have today means nobody should think about maglev: overall it just isn't enough better (similar for monorail - which has some advantages but not enough to be worth losing access to regular tracks).

    jon, avatar

    @martijn_geerdes Oh we had this in Berlin. There's German industrial interests here - Max Bögl has one

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