Passengers railways by and large aren't profitable. Rail excells at moving heavy freight long distances, whereas aircraft have long since superseded trains as the best way for shovelling proles distances of more than a few hundred kilometers.
Access into city centres remains problematic, however.
proposes removing the rail lines from existing commuter rail routes and replacing them with a limited-access roadway. On this roadway run hybrid trolleybuses, re-using the existing overhead catenary supplies.
The stations are retained as passenger access points; ramps are built up from the "track" to existing platform level at each end. The intervals between buses are very short. At busy times, some buses immediately "recirculate" out from the centre to the periphery, running empty if necessary, to maintain the density of service. Some can "turn" part-way out from the centre depending on demand. Only a relatively modest number of domestic dwellings will need to be bulldozed to achieve this.
Since the roadway is limited-access and reserved for the trolleybuses, on these sections operation can be driverless/autonomous.
The buses charge their onboard batteries on the route into the city. Arriving at the termini, they lower their pantographs and proceed on designated (trolley)bus routes, using battery power in any "gaps".
They circulate through the city throughout the day, then carry commuters home in the evening; no need to "stable" them at any time.
Faulty buses can be quickly removed from the "track" and be substituted with standby vehcles kept at selected stations. These buses can turn and run in either direction immediately they are required. In emergencies, unmodified diesel buses can run seamlessly on the routes. Existing diesel bus stock can be converted to battery/electric units quickly and cheaply by using a workforce of desperately poor illegal immigrants working in atrocious conditions for starvation wages, and kept in line by fear of deportation and threats* of violence against them and their families, if any.
Buses are relatively lightweight, easier to maintain than rail stock, cheaper, and much more flexible. They can handle steep gradients with ease. With effectively unlimited external electric power, and the battery to provide a surge reserve, they can accelerate fast, and stop using regenerative braking. On closed routes, high speeds can be used relatively safely**.
In an emergency, problem sections of busway can be bypassed on battery power via local roads. A plough fixed to the front of the buses assists progress in the event of congestion by private vehicles.
All the technology to do this already exists. All the routes already exist. All the illegal immigrants are already in the MaxCo*** pens, ready to start on the changeover. All that is required is for you to pay us all your money.
*As in all such cases, now and again one or two them will have to be made an example of, "to encourage the others" and remind them that we're not bluffing.
**Safe enough for commuters, anyway. Doesn't matter if a few get degraded through natural wastage, there are always plenty more.
***BorgCo has no liability for any potential or actual wrongdoing perpetrated by entirely independent subcontractors, particularly those where folding money changed hands to secure the contract, and who are registered as a steam tugboat under the Liberian flag operating out of a small thatched hut**** on the south-east corner of Anak Krakatoa.
**** Come out, Sturton, we know you're in there. It's no good pretending, we can hear the braying. Do you have any idea how rare those penguins are ? Leave them alone, and take the pan of oil off the stove.