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Obama Administration Announces Funding for High-speed Rail Proposals

President Obama and Vice President Biden announced the award of nearly $8 billion in federal funds to initiate the planning and development of high-speed rail corridors around the nation.  Funding had been authorized in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.  More than half will be aimed at developing new, large-scale, high-speed rail programs.  California received the largest single share—up to $2.25 billion—for its planned project to connect Los Angeles to San Francisco and points in between with trains running up to 220 miles per hour.  Florida will receive up to $1.25 billion to develop a new high-speed rail corridor between Tampa and Orlando with trains running up to 168 miles per hour.  Approximately $1.1 billion has been allocated to upgrade existing track between Chicago and St. Louis to permit trains to travel at up to 110 miles per hour.  The remaining $3.4 billion is allocated among projects to serve corridors in Madison-Milwaukee-Chicago; Charlotte to Washington, DC; Eugene, OR, to Seattle; Detroit to Chicago; Cleveland to Cincinnati; and in the Northeast.