California’s new high-speed train system will generate more
than $1 billion in surplus revenues a year by 2030, reducing congestion and pollution
and returning nearly three times as much in value as the system will cost over
the next 40 years, according to a new business plan released by the California
High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA).
"This Business Plan calculates high-speed trains will
alleviate the need to spend nearly $100 billion to build about 3,000 miles of
new freeway plus five airport runways and 90 departure gates over the next two
decades," said Judge Quentin Kopp, chairman of the board of the CHSRA,
which released the plan Friday. "A statewide high-speed train system will
meet that same need for about half the cost."
Kopp called the Business Plan a “snapshot in time” taken
from thousands of hours of detailed analysis of the economic underpinnings of
the high-speed train system.
In addition to 160,000 construction jobs over the next two
decades, high-speed trains will generate 320,000 permanent jobs by 2030,
growing to 450,000 jobs in 2035, according to the plan. The system will also reduce
the state’s reliance on fossil fuel by 12.7 million barrels of oil per year and
eliminate 12 billion pounds of CO2 emissions a year. It will expand
transportation capacity, provide a new option for intercity travel, and act as
a catalyst to strengthen existing city centers by maintaining and improving
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