Hi Speed Stimulus

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Not quite finished looking at the US Stimulus package since it encompasses so many programs and so much money.  The latest aspect I’ve been looking at and indeed Emmanuel brought up on Off the Wall last week is rail.

The stimulus package designated 8 billion US dollars to high speed rail development on a national level.  Which made me want to see where they hope to have high speed rail service within the country… NY times Map to the rescue:

Of course many of us have heard about the California line and the significant amount of money they’ve approved there to develop  a TGV from Sacramento to San Diego. But some of the corredors I never heard about include the San Antonio to Tulsa line, or the New Orleans to Atlanta corredor. Even St. Louis to Chicago sounds far fetched at this point.

According to the media analysis and the so-called expert analysis, none of this money is actually going to make it to any actual high speed rail projects, except for maybe in the case of California.  The rest of the money will help get existing rail functioning at a normal level, doing the most basic things like making sure switches work and regular trains can pass going a reasonably fast speed. (reasonable for a 30 year old train)

One other thing I never knew about mentioned in the NYTimes article reads as follows:

Voters in Florida passed a constitutional amendment requiring the state to build a high-speed rail system, only to repeal it a few years later after several prominent businesses, along with Jeb Bush, who was then the governor, complained of its expense.

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