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While high speed rail has been a fact of life in Germany and France for a generation it is slowly making inroads elsewhere in Europe as we learn from the New York Times.

“Since a high-end, high-speed rail connection between Barcelona and Madrid opened in 2008, a 325-mile journey that takes about 6 hours by car can be completed in just 2 hours and 38 minutes, from city center to city center.

“Two years ago, nearly 90 percent of the six million people traveling between Madrid and Barcelona went by air. But early this year the number of train travelers on the route surpassed fliers, and the trajectory is ever upward.”


Not only is this great for the environment (train travel emits about one quarter the about of emissions as flying) it is good for the economy of this beleaguered E.U. member.  As Spain builds up its high speed network getting from point A to B, especially when B is not directly served by a large airport, will be easier and more fun than flying.

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