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HSIPR @ Work

Amtrak Downeaster Extension Project CompletionThe American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) and annual appropriations have provided $10.1 billion to expand passenger rail access to new communities and provide Americans with faster and more energy-efficient travel options. These investments are part of the Administration’s plan to transform travel in America through targeted investments in five key mega-regions around the country, including  a total of 33 States and the District of Columbia. 

With construction already underway or complete in 14 states, these projects will create tens of thousands of jobs, improve mobility and stimulate American manufacturing. Through these initial investments and more to come in the future, the Administration, in coordination with the States and Amtrak, is working toward developing a passenger rail network that will connect 80 percent of Americans to high-speed rail in 25 years.  Through the HSIPR program, FRA is:

  • Making an unprecedented investment in the Northeast Corridor (NEC), with $950 million to upgrade some of the most heavily-used sections of the corridor. The investments will increase speeds from 135 to 160 mph on critical segments, improve on-time performance, and add more seats for passengers so one of the nation’s busiest corridors can continue to set ridership and revenue records. 
     
  • Laying the groundwork for the nation’s first 220-mph high-speed rail system in California through a $3.9 billion investment. This will complete environmental and engineering studies and build a 130-mile segment in the Central Valley, the backbone of the California corridor between Los Angeles to San Francisco.
     
  • On-track machineryProviding $1.9 billion to expand high-speed rail service in the Midwest. Newly-constructed segments of 110-mph track between Chicago, IL and Detroit, MI will save passengers 30 minutes in travel time and create nearly 1,000 new jobs in the construction phase. Upgrades to the Chicago, IL to St. Louis, MO corridor and 96 new miles of track will shave time off the trip, enhance safety and increase ridership.  An estimated 5,000 jobs are expected to be created through the Chicago-St. Louis improvements alone.
     
  • Extending Amtrak’s Downeaster service to Brunswick, ME, providing connections to: Portland, ME; Boston, MA; and the rest of the Northeast region. The Brunswick station area and corridor has already attracted private investment in the form of commercial, residential, and medical center development.
     
  • Boosting U.S. manufacturing through approximately $800 million for investment in “Next Generation”  locomotives and rail cars for California, the Midwest, and the Pacific Northwest. New, state-of-the-art rail equipment built according to uniform national specifications will deliver safe, reliable and interoperable American-built vehicles for passenger travel.
     
  • Bolstering American passenger rail expertise and resources and encouraging a domestic market in the rail sector through Buy America requirements. FRA is beginning the process of developing implementing regulations to govern the application of the Buy America statute to all PRIIA-authorized spending as part of the HSIPR program. Section 24405(a) provides that the Secretary of Transportation (authority delegated to the Federal Railroad Administrator) may obligate an amount to carry out a PRIIA-funded project only if the steel, iron, and manufactured goods used in the project are produced in the United States.
     
  • Improving the safety, reliability, and accessibility of rail infrastructure for passengers around the country through renewal of corridor infrastructure and stations. 

 

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