high-speed rail

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US Spent $11B Spinning Wheels on High-Speed Rail

Obama's 2011 promise was 'unadulterated hype,' critics say

(Newser) - Since 2009, $11 billion has gone toward speeding up passenger trains in the US, yet there's little to show for it, the New York Times reports. Though the Obama administration isn't wholly to blame—GOP opposition, community protests, and lawsuits have also ridden the brakes—an expert says... More »

Al-Qaeda Hatching Train Plot: Report

NSA allegedly tips off Germany

(Newser) - Al-Qaeda may be plotting to attack Europe's high-speed rail network, according to a report in Germany's Bild newspaper. According to the report, the NSA overheard the plan while listening in on an al-Qaeda conference call, the AFP reports—possibly the same conference call that reportedly led to the... More »

Tesla, SpaceX Founder Unveils 800mph 'Hyperloop'

Elon Musk finally explains the next big thing in transportation

(Newser) - Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla Motors and commercial space company SpaceX, has finally unveiled the "Hyperloop," his much-hyped new transportation system idea . And it's pretty far out there. It's a bit like a human shotgun, explains Businessweek : people would sit inside aluminum pods, which would... More »

Transportation's Next Big Leap: Hyperloop?

Elon Musk calls it a cross between a Concorde and railgun

(Newser) - Elon Musk is up to something that he thinks could revolutionize transportation. At this week's D11 conference , the Tesla Motors and SpaceX founder was asked about something called "hyperloop," but said he couldn't talk much about it because "if I do, that will be the... More »

China Rolls Out World's Longest Bullet Train Route

Trains running at 187mph between Beijing, Guangzhou

(Newser) - China has chosen December 26—Mao Zedong's birthday—to officially open the world's longest high-speed rail route, the BBC reports. The 1,428-mile line between Guangzhou and Beijing will cut the travel time between the two cities from 22 hours to eight, with bullet trains traveling at 187mph.... More »

California Senate Votes to Fund 1st US Bullet Train

$7.9B good for 130 miles, a fraction of project's $68B

(Newser) - The California Senate narrowly approved the $7.9 billion needed to start construction on the United States' first dedicated high-speed train line, which eventually should connect Los Angeles and San Francisco, reports the San Francisco Chronicle . About $4.6 billion will come from state bonds and $3.3 billion from... More »

China Puts Brakes on Bullet Trains

Will slow trains by 30mph while it also conducts safety checks

(Newser) - China is putting the brakes on its vaunted system of high-speed trains, following a derailment last month that killed 40 and sparked such fury that Beijing had to order a media blackout on negative coverage . China's fastest trains will be slowed by about 30mph to 185mph beginning next month,... More »

Florida Scraps High-Speed Rail Pushed by Obama

Rick Scott cancels plans for Orlando-Tampa train

(Newser) - Florida Gov. Rick Scott canceled plans for a high-speed train line between Orlando and Tampa promoted by President Barack Obama, saying today it would cost the state too much even with $2.4 billion in federal help. High-speed rail is one of Obama's priorities, and his latest budget proposal calls... More »

GOP Slams $53B High-Speed Rail Plan

Huge rail boost likely to meet stiff House opposition

(Newser) - Joe Biden announced an ambitious $53 billion plan to expand America's high-speed rail program yesterday, drawing immediate fire from Republicans. "This is like giving Bernie Madoff another chance at handling your investment portfolio," said House Transportation Committee chairman John Mica, pointing to previous rail failures and labeling Amtrak... More »

Amtrak to Build NY-NJ Train Tunnels for $13.5B

'Gateway Tunnel' project has planned 2020 finish

(Newser) - Amtrak plans to dig two new tunnels for commuter trains between New York and New Jersey, Reuters reports. The project, called the Gateway Tunnel and projected to cost $13.5 billion, has a loose finish date of 2020. "The two new trans-Hudson tunnels will provide long-sought, peak-period operational capacity... More »

America Will Grow by 100M —and High-Speed Rail Is Bad?

Blogger: We're going to need to build some kind of new infrastructure anyway

(Newser) - Economics blogger Ryan Avent picks apart the arguments against high-speed rail, including the fact that opponents don't seem to take into account the costs of accommodating America's population growth in coming years. We're going to have to build some kind of infrastructure so people can get around, whether it's highways... More »

JetBlue Exec Admits: Flying Can Be a Waste

On short routes, anyway, it doesn't make a lot of sense

(Newser) - It's not exactly a revelation, but it was still surprising to hear a JetBlue executive admit that it "may not make much sense" for travelers to fly short distances, writes Ariel Schwartz. "Maybe there’s a different mode of transportation that may be better to carry those customers... More »

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