Home NEWS Biden administration announces L.A.-Las Vegas high-speed electric train
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Biden administration announces L.A.-Las Vegas high-speed electric train

by Alice

High-speed rail in the United States could soon be a reality.

The White House recently announced the allocation of $8.2 billion in funding for several key rail projects, including a corridor from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, a line from Raleigh, North Carolina to Richmond, Virginia, new service throughout California’s Central Valley, and more. The investment is part of President Joe Biden’s “Investing in America” agenda.

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US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg told Travel + Leisure he was impressed by Japan’s rail infrastructure when he attended the G7 summit in Hiroshima earlier this year. “You come home and think, ‘Why can’t we have that?'” Buttigieg said. “Especially when you know that they’ve had high-speed rail in one form or another since the 1960s. And it’s not just Japan, which is famously at the forefront of this. In places like North Africa and the Middle East, we’re seeing levels of rail service that are beyond what the US has been able to deliver. So we know we have to change that – and that’s what we’re doing.

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Buttigieg said the lack of investment in new rail services over the past few decades is a trend that is now being reversed, and that while change won’t happen overnight, travellers will see improvements within a few years.

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“What’s really exciting for us is that this is a chance to lay out in detail what a future rail network could look like, and to put dollars behind the development of those lines,” Buttigieg said. “The broad vision is to make sure that Americans have excellent choices when it comes to passenger rail travel in a way that, frankly, we haven’t had for most of our lifetimes, because there was a time when the U.S. was a leader in rail, just as we were in aviation and other forms of surface transportation.”

More than 35 rail projects were named as part of the funding announcement, including :

Las Vegas to Los Angeles Metro: This 218-mile route will take a high-speed train two hours to complete and is expected to carry 11 million people a year.

Dallas to Houston: This will be a new high-speed service linking two of the most populous cities in Texas.

Raleigh to Richmond: This would be a new route, saving passengers 90 minutes.

New York City to Scranton, Pennsylvania: This route will update an existing, dormant line and provide easier access to New York City.

Fort Collins, Colorado to Pueblo, Colorado: This new route will connect two parts of Colorado not previously served by rail.

“Giving people the ability to get from city to city without having to go through airport security or get behind the wheel of a car is something that, again, if you had a comparable geography in other parts of the world – particularly Europe or Japan – it would be a no-brainer,” Buttigieg said. “So let’s make it a no-brainer here.”

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