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High-Speed Rail Authority issues Draft 2022 Business Plan for public review and comment

As California takes the lead in building a modern, clean and sustainable transportation system, the California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) issued its Draft 2022 Business Plan for public review and comment.

The release of the draft plan comes just 10 months after the Authority’s Board of Directors approved the final 2020 Business Plan.

The Draft 2022 Business Plan reaffirms staff’s policy recommendation to the Authority Board to develop a clean, electrified Merced to Bakersfield high-speed rail interim service line as soon as possible in California’s Central Valley with the funding currently available. The plan also discusses major program progress in Northern California, the Central Valley and Southern California, as well as addresses areas of opportunity with new federal funding and pending Legislative approval of Governor Gavin Newsom’s Transportation Infrastructure Package, including Proposition 1A bond funding for high-speed rail.

The Draft 2022 Business Plan builds on the Authority’s mission and guiding principles, specifically outlining how new funding will allow the Authority to:

  • Deliver an electrified, two-track initial operating segment connecting Merced, Fresno and Bakersfield as soon as possible.
  • Invest statewide to advance engineering and design work as every project section is environmentally cleared.
  • Leverage new federal and state funds for targeted statewide investments that benefit local service providers and advance high-speed rail in California.

The plan highlights how new state and federal funding would enable the Authority to further advance the program statewide, such as making capital investments to improve mobility and connect high-speed rail with existing passenger rail and transit services. It also updates the Authority’s budget and capital cost estimates for segments with recently approved environmental documents to account for numerous mitigation measures to address community concerns.

High-speed rail continues to be an economic engine for the state, creating over 7,300 construction jobs in the Central Valley and partnering with more than 650 small businesses since the start of construction. Nearly 300 of the 500-mile Phase 1 System from San Francisco to Los Angeles/Anaheim has also been environmentally cleared– including a contiguous stretch between Merced and Palmdale plus last month’s clearance of the Burbank to Los Angeles section.

By mid-2022, the Authority expects to have environmentally cleared 422 miles, with Board action expected on the final Records of Decision on the two Northern California sections between San Francisco and Merced. The Authority’s last two project sections, Palmdale to Burbank and Los Angeles to Anaheim, will advance in 2023.

With the release of today’s draft business plan, the Authority Board will review management’s recommendations and seek input as part of a 60-day public comment period that starts today and closes April 11. The Authority is providing the following options for submitting comments:

California High-Speed Rail Authority
Attn: Draft 2020 Business Plan
770 L Street, Suite 1180
Sacramento, CA 95814

  • Voicemail comment at: (916) 384-9516
  • Provide public comment at the two upcoming Board of Directors Meeting within the public comment period being held virtually on February 17 and March 17.

The Draft 2022 Business Plan, required by Assembly Bill 528 (Lowenthal, Chapter 237, Statutes of 2013), can be found online at https://hsr.ca.gov/about/high-speed-rail-business-plans/2022-business-plan

The following link contains recent video, animations, photography, press center resources and latest renderings: https://hsra.box.com/s/vyvjv9hckwl1dk603ju15u07fdfir2q8. These files are all available for free use, courtesy California High-Speed Rail Authority.

This article was released by the California High-Speed Rail Authority.