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Intercity Rail

The state Department of Transportation has received a $10 million grant to transform an Amtrak station into a centralized transportation hub with retail opportunities and exhibits. The new station is expected to open in 2025.
The Purple Line, formerly the Rush Line, would run from St. Paul to White Bear Lake, and would service 21 local stations. Despite growing opposition to the $475 million project, it’s unclear if it will be enough to stop the development.
A proposed 25-mile bike path that would stretch from Portland to Auburn using a retired railway has run into complications as transit officials are working to draft a new agreement with the rail company.
The proposed rail link between Baltimore and Washington would provide a 15-minute ride and eventually extend to New York. Opponents of the $10 billion project cheered the Federal Railroad Administration’s notice.
The $1 trillion infrastructure package makes no explicit mention of the state’s efforts to build a high-speed rail, but lawmakers are continuing to analyze if pockets of funding are available from other areas.
The national passenger railroad needs to rebuild its ridership. Lower fares seem like a surefire way to lure old and new riders. But greater reliability and faster speeds are factors too.
The city has officially come out against the $10 billion proposed high-speed Maglev train to Washington, citing negative equity and environmental impacts. The trip between the two cities would cost riders $60 and take 15 minutes.
Federal funding formulas need to evolve to help regional governing bodies to accelerate both large and community-focused projects that have an impact across these large population clusters.
The two hundred miles of high-speed railway rely upon dense urban growth around transit stations to achieve long-term success. But as California and San Diego birth rates and population decline, some worry it’s too costly a risk.
Despite having billions more than anticipated, Gov. Gavin Newsom will not allocate any of the surplus budget funds for the bullet train. With many Republicans opposing the rail project, the decision may have been political.