Train Riders Association of California suggests ‘better’ high-speed rail plan

Train Riders Association of California suggests ‘better’ high-speed rail plan

The Train Riders Association of California has argued that the California High-Speed Rail Authority's current $6-billion bullet train project is a wasteful plan, and thus it should be discarded.

The association said the state needed a much less costly project to create a high speed rail link between San Francisco and Los Angeles, and stressed that people needed the service now, not 20 years in the future.

The association proposed its own plan. It suggested the authority to spend federal money to upgrade the region's existing Amtrak corridor between Sacramento and Bakersfield to speeds of up to 110 mph, which would provide faster service up and down the San Joaquin Valley.

Cap-and-trade funds should be used to upgrade the San Diego to Los Angeles Amtrak rail corridor to 110 mph. The investment in the state-owned Amtrak system would offer notable enhancements in mobility at a much more affordable cost.

The association also suggested that project should be built around private investment. Thus, an open bidding process should be created for private investment for the high-speed rail project.

While the new project would bring more noise to cities and disruptions to agriculture, upgrading the existing service would not bring any such nuisance. Moreover, the existing services could be upgraded with just a small fraction of the $6 billion pool that has been created for the new project.

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