California's high-speed rail system will be getting underway in America's vegetable basket.
So now we know, if it begins, it will be “in the heart of the state’s Central Valley.”
The California High-Speed Rail Authority Board today picked the starting location for the first 65-mile stretch of track in the Los Angeles to San Francisco rail system. LA to San Francisco would be a 418-mile rail trip. The time is expected to take 2 hours, 27 minutes, according to the Rail Authority's website.
Construction will start north of Fresno, near Madera, and include the construction of two new stations – one in downtown Fresno and the other east of Hanford – continuing to Corcoran, north of Bakersfield, according to the Rail Authority.
This segment will use about $4.15 billion of the available $4.3 billion to build the two stations, acquire rights of way, construct viaducts, prepare the site, grade, restore vegetation, build rail bridges, realign roadways and relocate existing railways and utilities.
The choice of the Central Valley was hardly a surprise. The Federal Railroad Administration issued a mandate in October that directed that all current federal funding for the project be dedicated to a portion of the project in the Central Valley.
several other sites were considered, says the Rail Authority, but none would spend out as much of the funding as this one.
Let it be known that travel time from San Diego to San Francisco via air is about an hour and a half.
As laid out in the video below, this notion of needing a high-speed rail here in California always had more than a whiff of snake oil and boondoggle about it.
“But Main Street’s still all cracked and broken!”
"Sorry, ma, the mob has spoken"
Eh, unfortunately that "mob" was the California voter who approved this dubious enterprise back in November of 2008 via the initiative process.