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Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: February 27th, 2015, 8:33 pm
by froggie
...which is basically how John Weeks traveled to visit/photograph all the river bridges.

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: February 27th, 2015, 10:00 pm
by mulad
talindsay wrote:I wonder who the audience for this will be: Europeans vacationing in the Midwest? Older Americans? The Mississippi honestly seems like an odd choice to me: the only big city on the upper river is our fair city, and places such as Winona, Dubuque, Galena, and Keokuk don't have a lot of awareness outside the upper midwest. The lower river has some more major cities: St. Louis, Memphis, New Orleans; but down there the river is wide, straight, and heavy with barge traffic. The boat itself would need to be a major draw, I think, and given that paddlewheel (and fake paddlewheel) cruises already operate on the river I would think Viking would be relying on crossovers from their established, successful cruise businesses.

Of course, I suppose there's a certain mystique around our river, and that may be enough to drive sales. But the most similar European river in my opinion, the Rhine, still has much higher density of cities and towns along it than the Mississippi. Clearly this could be a boon to the quaint river towns, so hopefully it succeeds.
I'm curious about the audience too. I think it's a bit telling that they have a headquarters facility in Los Angeles. I can't quite figure out whether it's the official worldwide headquarters or basically just the U.S. sales arm. Their main operations are apparently in Basel, Switzerland, but having a U.S. facility in L.A. probably means they have a number of very good customers/investors/partners in that area. They've had the U.S. office since 2000 (they were only founded in 1997), so they've been cultivating a market here for some time now. I wonder how much of the bicoastal set would practically see the Mississippi as something from another country. A lot of the time, not knowing much about a destination can open you up to be pleasantly surprised.

Looking over some of the videos they have, their ships seem very nice, though a lot of them are practically brand-new -- less than a quarter of them were built before 2010. By comparison, the few riverboats I've been on were each probably 20+ years old at the time, with a new layer of paint for each season caked onto the walls and rails.

A comparison between American and European passenger trains has popped into my head a few times, mostly around how Amtrak is infrequent, not terribly reliable, and having some glaring inefficiencies, while European services make a bigger upfront investment in order to run more frequently, yet streamlining the experience as much as possible. It isn't a perfect analogy, but it seems like they aim to give a real "Wow!" experience rather than a "pretty good" one. The potential price makes me gulp, but I haven't done an extensive comparison to other cruises or structured trips -- they all tend to look expensive to me...

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: April 7th, 2016, 8:04 am
by ProspectPete
The article doesn't mention how many stops are planned per year in St Paul, but Viking had said that they planned 60 per year. My hope is that they integrate the SPUD with the future river balcony, and then use Lamberts Landing. It would get more people using SPUD for what it was recently remodeled for: a multi-modal transit hub.
I do recall reading somewhere that the Custom House hotel was an eager partner in the Riverview balcony. They could offer some nice cross marketing campaigns where passengers begin or end their voyage there. As Lowertown strengthens and becomes it's very own destination, this could be something very unique.
http://www.twincities.com/2016/04/06/an ... n-st-paul/

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: April 7th, 2016, 8:09 am
by mattaudio

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: December 17th, 2016, 11:21 am
by mulad
Viking River Cruises has pushed back their launch date to 2018, and their statements seem to be getting more vague. No ships have been built yet for the Mississippi River service.

http://www.startribune.com/cruising-to- ... 407157586/

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: December 30th, 2016, 8:50 am
by mulad

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 8:43 am
by CalMcKenney
Totally unrelated to this topic, but I had no idea where to put this. Just got back to Vancouver and we absolutely fell in love with their use of boats as a transportation option.

My idea was to set-up some sort of water transportation on the Mississippi to serve from somewhere in the Nicollet Island area to northern Minneapolis with stops along the way.

Am I just an idiot, or would this be a low cost (and fun) way to serve northern Minneapolis transportation needs to downtown. I do realize the river freezes over and the service couldn't be used all the time, but I'm still curious if any cities use their rivers for transportation and if anyone has thought about this? Thanks!

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 8:56 am
by DanPatchToget
I can think of at least 4 cities that use a river for public transportation, but I don’t know if it’s year-round or seasonal.

I do like the idea of a summer-only river shuttle between Nicollet or Boom Island and somewhere in northern Minneapolis.

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 8:57 am
by SurlyLHT
Might better to go downstream from beneath the falls near the U of M to St Paul. I guess what we need is a marina? St Paul has one by Crosby Park. Otherwise, if you had a fast boat...it would be a pretty quick from Mpls to St Paul wouldn't it? I think it might not be terrible far behind 94

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 9:12 am
by Silophant
I think the lock at the Ford Dam would eat up any time savings there, even with a fast boat.

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 9:13 am
by MNdible
https://mplswatertaxi.com/

In spite of the name, it's not really a taxi. But it's a great time.

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 11:38 am
by SurlyLHT
I forgot about the Ford Dam. If they removed the dams, I hope we'll be able to get more ppl on the river.

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 12:45 pm
by MNdible
SurlyLHT wrote:
July 3rd, 2019, 11:38 am
I forgot about the Ford Dam. If they removed the dams, I hope we'll be able to get more ppl on the river.
If they remove the Ford Dam, there will be rapids which would make the river unnavigable.

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 1:27 pm
by SurlyLHT
MNdible wrote:
July 3rd, 2019, 12:45 pm
SurlyLHT wrote:
July 3rd, 2019, 11:38 am
I forgot about the Ford Dam. If they removed the dams, I hope we'll be able to get more ppl on the river.
If they remove the Ford Dam, there will be rapids which would make the river unnavigable.
We'll hopefully get more adventurous boaters. Fly into MSP, run/bike around the Lakes and Mississippi, see a baseball game go out to eat see a play..then raft down the river a couple times. While they're at it throw some limestone ontop of St Anthony falls to make it look mighter.

Re: I'm on a Boat!

Posted: July 3rd, 2019, 2:21 pm
by fehler
I can't wait for Raft Transit!