California High Speed Rail Line to Begin Construction


Image: CA HSR Authority Board

With my apologies to the late Sam Cooke: It's been a loooong time comin', but I know-oh-oh-woah, that a high speed train gon' come. (That was either the lamest thing I have ever written, or the most awesome. Or neither.) Anyhow, it's true. The California High-Speed Rail Authority Board voted last week to begin construction on the line that will connect Los Angeles to San Francisco. This is big news.Especially since high speed rail has proven so surprisingly contentious of late, with governor-elects in the Midwest flat out rejecting funding for rail projects, and the general mood swirling around HSR one of uncertainty and apprehension. But no more! In California, shovels will soon be hitting the dirt as the project gets underway with the construction of a middle segment of the line.

Smart Planet has the story:

The 65-mile segment, located in the heart of the state's Central Valley, lays the foundation for expanding the track north and south. It was chosen because it makes best use of available funding and can be used whether or not the rest of the 800-mile system is built -- both federal requirements.

"We're in the business of connecting major metropolitan centers across our state," authority vice chair Tom Umberg said in a statement. "We won't have a true high-speed rail system until we tie every part of this state together."

While some folks are grumbling that the location of the first segment isn't ideal -- it will go between Fresno and Corcoran, neither of which are the state's largest metropolises -- the jobs created by the project will arguably help the depressed area of California the most.

And regardless, we're up and running. High speed rail is on the way.

More on California High Speed Rail
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