Voters approve funds for California Bullet Train


Photo Courtesy of Google Images

Madison Hatfield - Staff Writer

The 2012 Revised Business Plan for the California High-Speed Rail projects the addition of a bullet train spanning from San Francisco to Los Angeles  The first stage of the CHSR, which was approved by Governor Jerry Brown earlier this year, allows for the construction of a 130-mile segment of the track spanning from Madea to Bakersfield.  The final project is broken up into three separate phases.  Construction on the second and third phases, which include other segments of track such as one stretching from L.A. to San Diego, cannot begin because it has not yet been approved.  The train will run on fossil-fuel and eliminate 12 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions per year.

The CHSR will stretch from the San Francisco Bay Area to the southern-most parts of Calif.  The train will run the Pacheco Pass route to connect L.A. to San Francisco.  The distance between San Francisco and L.A. is about 400 miles and the trip will take approximately two hours and 21 minutes.  The train will reach speeds of up to 220 miles per hour and the proposed length of the track is over 800 miles.

“I believe that the bullet train will be a great addition to California,” said sophomore Rita Yazejian.  “It will generate money and jobs for the state and it will also allow for many people to travel to places faster and more efficiently.”

The funding includes $4.5 billion worth of bonds approved by voters.  The money from the bonds now allows for $3.2 billion in federal money to be used for the train that would have otherwise expired July 6.  The projected final cost of the first stage of the CHSR is $68 billion.

According to the 2012 Revised Business Plan, the construction of the CHSR is estimated to create 450,000 permanent jobs and the Los Angeles-San Francisco route alone is estimated to generate revenue of $2.23 billion by 2023.

The CHSR is expected to lessen expenses and need for other types of transportation in Calif. Each train will carry between 950 and 1,300 people in its cars.  Officials estimate that by 2030, between 88 and 117 million people will have travelled using the CHSR system.