homastj saidthis is so friggin cool! I had no idea this was coming to fruition.It's not without a lot of controversy of course. I think I read somewhere that they're starting the first leg in Bakersfield…I don't know, someone must know someone in Bakersfield to start it there! LOL
a little surprised that CA is making this such a high priority given its budget turmoil though...
Actually, this is not all that unusual. You want to start a new rail system in the place with the fewest problems first, to work out the kinks. Many rail systems were constructed first in the "middle of nowhere." The general public thinks it's stupid and something must be wrong, fanned by the flames of the opposition, and uncorrected by a media that is only interested in controversy and drama, and avoids facts like the plague.
The opposition to CA HSR is pretty much one single constituency, sometimes astroturfing itself in other guises:
Rich property owners on the SF Peninsula (Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Atherton, Burlingame) that want the entire thing put underground, but don't want to pay for it.
Most everyone else in the entire state supports it.
The opposition is truly galling because the existing Caltrain line nearby these rich nimby communities (that don't give a shit about public transport or public anything, frankly) is much more frequent, slower, noisier and polluting than HSR will be, but these communities are trying to extort HSR with endless lawsuits to solve the existing Caltrain problem on the back of the HSR program. Their slogan is that HSR is a boondoggle. The real boondoggle is this opposition using taxpayer money to improve their properties by taking an existing surface rail right-of-way and spending extra billions to bury it for miles so that their backyards look nicer.
Oops, I betrayed my crankyness on this topic. I told myself I'd be nice on RJ this year to improve my mental health.