California's high-speed train wreck?

A Los Angeles Times' editorial describes the California bullet train, which could pass through Alhambra, as developing into a "high-speed train wreck." At fault: the High-Speed Rail Authority. The Times editorial page, which supports the project, writes "the state's plan to build a bullet train has become a monument to the ways poor planning, mismanagement and political interference can screw up major public works. We can do better."

Despite the Times' criticism of the Authority's planning, it maintains: "The benefits still outweigh the costs, and none of the $43-billion project's troubles are insurmountable."

Dan Bednarski, who runs the site Alhambra123: Let's get organized Alhambra!, reports there are various upcoming ways local residents can get involved in the process. "The California High Speed Rail Authority scheduled 16 community meetings about its high speed rail project over the next six weeks throughout the local area," he writes. "The Alhambra meeting is scheduled for June 23 but you do not need to wait that long to find out more information about the project. Feel free to attend any of the meetings and ask questions. Meetings will be held in El Monte on May 25, San Gabriel on May 31, in and Downtown LA on June 1."

Folks along the route were mailed the following flyer, also with all the dates and locations listed:(Google Docs) | (PDF)


1 thought on “California's high-speed train wreck?”

  1. If you know someone who lives along the high speed train route, please let them know about the meetings. The line that is planned through Alhambra will go from L.A. Union Station to Ontario and then down to San Diego. Similar meetings are scheduled along that full route.

    The important thing is to inform yourself about the project. Attend the meetings, ask questions, and read documents put out by the Authority as well as critical analysis about the project.

    Some basic details that we currently know include:
    1) Speeds up to 150 MPH through Alhambra. Jose Martinez, Project Director for the high speed rail segment between Union Station and San Diego, said the trains would travel between 110 and 150 MPH in urban areas during his presentation to the Alhambra City Council in August 2010. The straight section between Fremont and El Monte station would see trains hit 150 MPH.
    2) Trains would run 5 A.M. to Midnight
    2) Trains will travel on elevated platforms between 50 and 100 feet above the I-10 freeway. Specifically, trains will travel above the 10 & 710 freeways interchange. At that point, the platform will be 40 to 50 feet above the interchange (75 feet above street level of the I-10 freeway). The trains will also be about 100 to 110 feet above the street level at the wash (just past the 710).
    3) Construction will not begin until 2025, the earliest.
    4) On July 1, all work on the high speed rail line through the San Gabriel Valley likely will be put on hold. The initial state budget has $0 allocated and thus does not fund the supplemental alternatives analysis or the EIS/EIR for L.A. to San Diego. Whether Monday’s revised budget contains any funding is still not clear.

    For more info, check out the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) at

    But do not take my word for it. Show up to the meetings and ask questions for yourself. 🙂

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