Currently there is only one high-speed corridor in the United States. That could change, however, if the president’s plan to hasten the development of high-speed rail (HSR) is implemented. The plan includes upgrading existing railways, and creating new rail lines that will accommodate high-speed trains in a number of corridors across the country.
Acela, Amtrak’s only existing high-speed train, provides service along the Boston to Washington corridor. But, the plan to add 10 additional high-speed corridors throughout the country could really speed up the way people travel along the rails.
HSR is just one of many steps the government will implement in order to continue to help the country come closer to its “green” status. HSR is a clean, highly-efficient way of travel. The acceleration of the project will help to create jobs in both the construction and railway employment sectors.
The hope is that the project will drastically reduce the country’s dependence on other types of travel that are high polluting. “High-speed rail is long overdue,” the president says, and funding for the project is already approved.
Eight billion dollars will be provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). If all goes as planned, the government will provide an additional $1 billion dollars annually for the next five years.
There’s little doubt as to the efficiency of these high-speed trains. They travel at speeds of 150 – 250 miles per hour. This is good for travellers who need to get to their destination quickly, and it’s a green alternative to other forms of speedy travel.
Corridors that include the Pacific Northwest, the Midwest and the Southeast are all designated to have HSR. The plan includes thirty states, the District of Columbia and two gateways into Canada.
When the entire project is completed, and all corridors are up and running, high-speed rail travel will be a great solution to many of the current transportation woes the country suffers from, and travel in the United States will be one of the most economic and energy-efficient systems on the planet.