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An Interstate High-Speed Rail Authority on the Legislative Agenda in Washington

A big idea is gaining momentum.
January 25, 2019, 10am PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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JR Shinkansen
Like that, but a few thousands miles to the west.

Democrats in the Washington State Legislature introduced a bill that would interstate high-speed rail authority with Oregon and British Columbia. "The move takes Seattle a step closer to one-hour train trips to Portland and Vancouver, British Columbia," reports Stephen Fesler.

The bill would give the new high-speed rail authority the power to operate "harmoniously across two states, a province, and an international boundary."

"The authority would also engage with communities along the corridor to refine the alignment and make recommendations on funding levels and responsibilities to carry out advanced project development," according to Fesler.

The bill also would allow "$3.25 million in guaranteed funding from the state multimodal transportation account for the interstate high-speed rail authority."

If approved, the legislation would add to a string of accomplishments moving the idea toward reality. "High-speed rail advocates landed a big victory last year when the state legislature committed $1.2 million–of which was $750,000 in direct state grants–to a business case study for high-speed rail from Vancouver, British Columbia to Portland," according to Fesler.

Full Story:
Published on Wednesday, January 16, 2019 in The Urbanist
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