It is a national disgrace that America doesn’t have high speed rail yet. Other nations are leaving us in the dust. One problem with building such a train is securing all the land permits especially as it travels through dense areas that spiral around congested cities. Getting all that paper work done can take forever. Add environmental studies and you’re sunk.
[Even the UK now has outpaced the US with a high speed train – the Javelin, used during the 2012 Olympics]
But Texas has a special secret – the land between Austin and Houston is mostly empty. And you don’t have to get very far outside of Austin (just the other side of 130) before it goes to pasture land. That means, it would have the space to build a massive train depot. And if you outlaw the TSA groping, it quickly becomes the better alternative for travel. Not only nicer, less stressful, but faster as well.
The new trains can go at 200 miles an hour. That means that Houston would be an hour away, versus three hours to try and fly it.
The Austin-Houston leg would be just the beginning. Once done, the more difficult Austin-Dallas leg would get constructed. While not as perfect as a Houston-Dallas direct run, it still would be plenty fast, connecting the two in a two hour run. Again a hour faster than plane travel at best.
Finally sew up the leg down to San Antonio and you’ve got a connected texas. Have easy transfers for Port Aransas and Galveston and you’ve got a vacation line for the northerners.
This triangle approach should happen again in the North East, but its just too hard to get the land for the new tracks there. So how about a Portland-Seattle-Vancouver line? And a SF-LA-SD line. These triangles of local high speed transit will bring our states into cohesive wholes, powerful economic engines. Let the freight travel on freight trains we are humans for gods sake!
But even better. Let America’s brightest compete for the design of the newest train. Can they make it even faster? More beautiful on the inside. Get 100 designers to submit proposals and crowdpick the top designs.
Let’s have a new mark that shows that America still can do, still can be the best.
Instead, Obama lets us languish into the 1970s. sigh. Please look at this list and explain to me how America is the greatest we don’t even make the list!