High Speed Rail Questioned in California

"The lack of a clear financial plan is a critical concern. There is an air of unreality about a plan that includes $17 (billion) to $19 billion in 'free' federal funding from programs that do not yet exist."

Report on California High Speed Rail

"As California prepares to start construction on its $43 billion high-speed railroad, another group of experts has cast doubt on whether the project can succeed.

The California High-Speed Rail Peer Review Group, which the Legislature and voters created to scrutinize the project, said in its first report released last week that the state's largest project suffers from the "absence of a credible financial plan."

The study -- now the fifth of its kind issued by objective analysts this year, all stinging rebukes of the project -- calls for a "thorough reassessment" of several engineering, financial and managerial issues.

The group of transportation and financial engineers and managers headed by former Caltrans chief Will Kempton said the state's plan to attract funds from both the public and private sectors seems unlikely. Bullet train planners are gambling they're wrong, and voted last week to spend $4.15 billion to start construction in the Central Valley in 2012 while hoping to secure an additional $30 billion this decade to complete the full line..."

Read Experts criticize high-speed rail financial plan@ Mercury News.


Roadkill said...

"Bullet Train Planners" need to review the latest election returns and realize that the public is in no mood for huge new public spending projects.

America needs to curtail public spending - especially in bankrupt states such as California - at least until we are on a financial glide slope to solvency.

It is heartening to see that a group of "experts" is realistic enough to recognize the folly of this latest public spending misadventure.

Sunny Badger said...


I am personally confused as to what high-speed rail will accomplish in Wisconsin. Too many people confuse high-speed with light-rail.

At was at a Sierra Club meeting before the election and talk about the Stillwater bridge came up. One of the members said HSR would be one of the alliterative reasons for not building a bridge. I would allow people to commute to the Cities.

How I ask? By driving to Eau Claire? I prefer the route that goes from LaCrosse to Rochester because it forces much of the cost on Minnesota.

Building a link between Milwaukee and Madison is about as useful as spending taxpayer dollars to build Miller Stadium.