2010-11-04 / General Stories

Sen. Hutchison: Texas Wins $5.6 Million Grant for High Speed Rail Planning for South Texas Oklahoma Corridor

Award Signals the Beginning of a Promising Partnership between DOT and TXDOT on High Speed Rail

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Calling it an important first step “in developing high speed rail infrastructure in Texas” to give passengers more travel options and help ease chronic congestion, U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) today announced the Texas Department of Transportation has been awarded a $5.6 million competitive grant by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration.

The grant funding will be used to complete feasibility studies and preliminary service planning for a designated 850-mile high speed rail corridor, which runs along I-35 between South Texas and Oklahoma City. The grant funding will be shared with the State of Oklahoma, and Texas will be the lead partner in the project.

“This award supporting planning and feasibility studies is an important first step in developing high speed rail infrastructure in Texas. The availability of intercity passenger rail service will give Texans more travel options and help ease our state’s chronic traffic congestion,” said Sen. Hutchison. “I applaud the Federal Railroad Administration for recognizing the importance and potential of high speed rail in Texas, and I hope we can forge a strong public private partnership to bring this project to fruition.”

Sen. Hutchison, the senior Republican on the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, has long pressed the U.S. Department of Transportation to extend high speed passenger rail service beyond the Northeast corridor.

At a September 15, 2010, Commerce Committee hearing on the federal role in national rail policy, she questioned Deputy Transportation Secretary John D. Porcari on what states like Texas need to be doing to invest in rail projects and corridors that could become part of a national network.

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