Do they still build railroads?

How much in “real” cost is it to lay track. What goes into it? I mean steal for the track, wood for the RR Ties (whatever they are called officially).

Were railroads only economical in the old days as the government “gave” the RRs land. Which I believe after minor improvments they were able to sell.

Labor, purchasing right of way, blasting rock, establishing grade, maintenance, etc. Why do people thing that the only “real” costs are materials?

Don’t forget the slight problem caused by the ever-expanding, volcanic Mid-Atlantic Trench. It’s a huge rift where two continental plates are being forced apart by uprising lava. Not a place I’d choose to run a rail line through.

Jovan, the travel time would be 54 minutes, if you can believe that the train would travel at 5,000 mph… hmmm.
more here.

That’s not altogether true. I’m told the trains between L.A. and San Diego turn a profit; they certainly seem crowded enough to. That line also goes north to San Luis Obispo, though I believe less frequent, less crowded, and perhaps not profitably.

With the state of air travel the way it is, I don’t see why we wouldn’t want a high speed train between L.A. and the Bay Area.