California's Orange County launches $7 million study of high-speed rail

October 11, 2006

Transportation planners for Orange County, Calif., have approved a $7 million plan for a study of a high-speed-rail line to Los Angeles, to help reduce congestion on area roadways.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the Orange County Transportation Authority agreed to the preliminary study to look at using an existing train corridor for an added electrified track to shuttle passengers from Los Angeles' Union Station to Anaheim in less than 20 minutes.

The decision also allows the authority's staff to work with the California High Speed Rail Authority in Sacramento. A statewide bond initiative seeking nearly $10 billion to build a network of high-speed rail lines is planned for 2008.

Throughout the state, plans are in the works for a 700-mile high-speed rail system serving the San Francisco Bay Area, the Central Valley, Los Angeles County, the Inland Empire and Orange and San Diego counties.

The Orange County authority will seek reimbursement from the state if the initiative carries.