This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

June 02, 2010

Transportation Department Awards $80 million in High-Speed Rail Grants

Artist's conception of a sleek train with an extended, rounded snout pulling into a station.

Funding for high-speed rail comes from many sources. In 2008, California voters approved nearly $10 billion in bonds for a high-speed rail project that will connect many of the state's major cities.
Credit: California High Speed Rail Authority and NC3D

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced on May 27 that it has delivered nearly $80 million in grants to five states as part of President Obama's high-speed and intercity passenger rail program. The bulk of the funds—$66.6 million—will go towards program management and preliminary engineering on a planned high-speed rail service in Florida, running between Tampa and Orlando. The project will include 84 miles of track and will feature trains running at 168 miles per hour (mph).

Grants were also delivered to California, for track relocation work in support of a high-speed rail line connecting San Francisco and Sacramento; to Wisconsin, for environmental assessments of planned new stations on a 110-mph rail line between Milwaukee and Madison; and to New York State, for the planning of projects to increase the speed of the Empire Corridor to 110 mph. The 468-mile Empire Corridor connects all of New York's largest cities. In addition, New Mexico will receive a grant to create the state's first-ever rail plan, the first step in a project that could eventually link all the major cities in the Southwest. With the exception of New Mexico, all of the projects also received a share of $8 billion in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds that were announced in late January. See the DOT press release and an article on the Recovery Act funding for high-speed rail from the February 3 edition of the EERE Network News.