High Speed Rail to get stimulus money, putting America on track with other nations

By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now

When the giant stimulus bill expected to be approved by Congress, finally lumbers forth it will pour billions into projects that have been neglected, like highway renovations, and items that have recently bleeped onto the public radar screen, like clean energy incentives.

In some cases, money has been included (so far) for programs that have been debated and tabled for years. High speed rail, which is slated to get $8 billion, falls into that category.

You might be ask yourself, what is high speed rail? And you’d be right to ask that question, because right now, in America, there is no high-speed rail. There’s a grand plan for a high-speed train that would run the length of California, where voters last fall approved the first bond money for the Sacramento to San Diego line. Once, years ago, people proposed high-speed rail as a way to better connect Dallas, Austin and Houston, a plan that met an early death in a state well-served by airlines and enamored of highways.