Sunday, July 5, 2009

Making Tracks Down South

NOTE: We've moved! Visit us at the California High Speed Rail Blog.

by Rafael

while CHSRA continues to face widely publicized opposition in the SF peninsula, there is active competition for the alignment that the phase 2 spur from LA Union Station to San Diego will follow. We already discussed the ROW issues in an earlier post.

The Riverside Press-Enterprise explains that the City of Riverside is competing with the much smaller City of Corona for a station, as both recognize the economic value of having a stop on the network. The Corona concept is based on an alignment alternative down I-15 and is supported by Riverside county as well as Lake Elsinore and Temecula. This would be the shortest option that still allows for a station close to Ontario airport, but the proposed station at Cajalco Rd would be several miles south-east of downtown Corona; an old freight spur could be leveraged for new Metrolink routes, but most passengers would presumably drive or take a bus to a giant parking lot in the middle of nowhere (cp. Victorville). The city could probably improve its chances by proposing instead a new station for both HSR and Metrolink at the intersection of the BNSF Transcon line and I-15, between Quarry St. and the CA-91 interchange in Corona proper.

On the other hand, CHSRA's completed and certified program-level EIR/EIS calls for trains to run further east past UC Riverside, before joining I-15 by way of I-215. Three separate connectors down from the I-10 corridor near Colton are being studied, but running above or below Iowa Ave, Chicago Ave or S Riverside Ave/Main Street is non-trivial. Note that the existing Riverside Metrolink station is located approx. 1.5 miles south of the CA-91/CA-60/I-215 interchange, rendering it useless as a regional feeder service to the HSR station for Corona, Perris and San Bernardino. This last city would very much like to have an HSR station of its own, but its downtown is out of the way of the preferred route described in the program-level EIR/EIS.

There is, of course, one heretical idea that might be worth considering now that DesertXPress looks like it may go ahead: continuing HSR along the BNSF Transcon line and/or CA-91 past the phase 1 section to Fullerton. Bullet trains would then run to San Diego via Corona without any need for additional HSR tracks along I-10. Eventually, a connector would put Riverside and San Bernardino on the spur to Victorville and Las Vegas. Anaheim ARTIC would also be on a spur, though there is a railroad ROW running north from Orange that could perhaps be used to allow a subset of trains to include that station on a run-through detour. The biggest problems are NIMBYs in the Santa Ana Valley and, the fact that this route would not run anywhere near Ontario airport. That would mean redoing part of the program-level EIR/EIS for this phase 2 spur, something I am sure CHSRA would prefer to avoid.

The above is meant to illustrate how integrated planning of the California network and DesertXPress line could open up new and possibly superior alternatives for HSR development. One slide at the recent press conference announcing the inclusion of Las Vegas in the federally designated California HSR corridor already included a connector between Palmdale and Victorville, though frankly one between Mojave and Barstow would be more useful for SF-LV and hew close to an existing road/rail traffic corridor (CA-58) The latter point is relevant for CEQA. For the moment, though, all of this remains wishful thinking: there appears to have been zero formal contact between CHSRA and DesertXPress to date and, neither planning body has taken ownership of getting any such connector funded and built.

42 comments:

jim said...

I strongly support the CAhHSR chosen route on I-215. It captures a much larger potential rider population and serves a broader portion of the state for the money. It brings HSR closer to the SNB and Coachella Valley populations,as well as the Moreno Valley and Hemet, all with larger populations than Lake Elsinore and Corona. While still serving Murieta and Temecula.

Also the state's future population growth in southern California is going to be in the further eastern portions of the Inland Empire. The Authority really does know what it's doing in respect to capturing the most ridership with these routes, for the investment, by spreading high speed trunk line to the broadest area possible. I won't satisfy some purists who are only in a hurry to get point to point - from sf to san diego for instance, but there will be far more ridership to be gained by including a broader population area while the total time added to any given long distance trip won't vary by a significant amount. For every rider you might potentially lose to air travel because the train takes an extra 20 minutes to get to San Deigo ( and you won't really lose them for that unless they are already hell bent on flying because the train amenities and comfort can't be matched) you will gain severl riders who for whom the train becomes an option because it serves a larger area. The majority of trips that will be made on this system once its fully built out and operation will not be SFC-LAX or SFC-SAN for LAX-SAN the larger bulk of ridership will bet he interim city pairs.

jim said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jim said...

The time difference is about 12 minutes from ontario to riverside via 215 . In fact there shoud be a station located in the I-10 I-215 interchange with a park n ride- it would be a godsend to people commuting from the eastern inland empire - getting them to La in 30 minutes. if any of you have ever driven from the desert or san bernadino on the 10 you know what a godsend this would be.

Brian Stankievich said...

Actually, the CAHSR Authority and DesertXpress are in talks already. I spoke with a staff person at the Authority meeting in Sacramento last week. It seems that CAHSR trains may not be able to use the DXP tracks at first (no electrification and still active grade crossings) but they are already discussing how to interconnect cross-platform, and someday run through service.

lexslamman said...

Shouldn't LA to San Diego through the Inland Empire be the Phase 1 corridor given the success of Amtrak service between those two cities? It just seems to make more sense to start where the will is than to wind up battling a bunch of spoiled NiMBY handwringers in the Peninsula.

Rafael said...

@ Brian Stankievich -

DX intends to run its trains at 150mph top speed. Any section rated at over 125mph must be fully grade separated by law. If they intend to retain some grade crossings, they will have to run at lower speeds through those. CA HSR trains could do the same, so there is no compatibility issue there.

Electrification is an issue, but then DX is now considering that option as well and rightly so. While it is technically possible to run diesel trains at speeds in excess of 125mph, the fuel cost is stupendous. Much better to bite the bullet up front and electrify the line at the international HSR standard of 25kV AC.

The incremental cost of laying down tracks that support operations at 220mph wouldn't be all that high either, it's just that DX is in a hurry and dowdy old FRA hasn't written the rules to permit operations at that speed yet. However, they'll have to for the California system, so DX might as well take advantage of that.

jim said...

if dx is built to cali standards they can contract to proive direct sf-lv service on ca track. at a price of course.

Rafael said...

@ jim -

bingo. Direct Anaheim-LA-LV service, too. The route via Palmdale wouldn't be optimal, but if express trains could cruise at 220mph on most of the Mojave-Barstow-Las Vegas section, service would still be time-competitive with flying.

At certain times of day, trains could run at lower speeds to enable some low fares and permit towing unmanned high speed cargo trainsets carrying high-value light freight such as mail & packages, perishable foods, fresh cut flowers etc.

Alon Levy said...

Lexsslamman, LA-SD is much shorter than the optimal route length for HSR. Japanese HSR planners consider 300 km to be the lower limit of a standard HSR corridor; below that, too many people drive and too few take the train. LA-SD is 190 km on I-5, and 245 on the preferred HSR route.

Jim, I can't really argue with what you say about route selection. SF-SD is not going to be very competitive with air in the first place, but SF-Inland Empire is, and the better HSR serves both ends, the more people will use it. And UC Riverside is going to be an important destination and origin, as all big universities are.

political_i said...

Alon

China has the Beijing-Tianjin HSR line. The route only takes 30 minutes by train yet the drive takes 2 hours between the two cities. The distance betwen those two cities is around 120 km. The preferred route would be limited to 240 km/h but it probably needs to be designed for 270-300 km/h to compete with single drivers. That corridor already has numerous freeways going inbetween the two areas.

Brandon in San Diego said...

I have always said that I am satsified with the LA to SD being in a later phase; it gives planners an opportunity to re-examine the route.

I'll be intertested in options that minimize cost, minimize travel time, and maximize ridership.

That said, I'd like to see the main line from Anaheim examined as an option for esxtension to San Diego. The Inland Empire could remain as a spur.

Anonymous said...

Shouldn't LA to San Diego through the Inland Empire be the Phase 1 corridor given the success of Amtrak service between those two cities? It just seems to make more sense to start where the will is than to wind up battling a bunch of spoiled NiMBY handwringers in the Peninsula.

You're giving faaar too much credit to the Peninsula NIMBYs. It's a small group of people making a lot of noise and hoping to get something for free. If we're looking at successful current rail corridors, the Caltrain corridor would be one of the first to look at. Caltrain carries several times the number of people per day that Amtrak and Metrolink do between SD and all of the LA/IE area.

Mike Folf said...

You know, watching the progress of CAHSR is, in a way, like a soap opera. I have no idea why, though.

Rafael said...

@ Brandon in San Diego -

as things stand, CHSRA is counting on operating just 2-3 trains per hour during peak periods between LA Union Station and Anaheim ARTIC. The primary reason is that the ROW between Fullerton and Anaheim is too narrow to construct dedicated HSR tracks.

In addition, continuing through OC beyond Irvine was studied and rejected. The natives in San Clemente and down in Del Mar were adamantly opposed to overhead catenaries spoiling their beachfront views. More prosaically, there are unstable cliffs and LA wanted the alignment to run past Ontario airport in a bid to relieve LAX, since OC voters rejected a plan to kick the Marine out of their El Toro base in Irvine.

If securing a ROW between Redondo Junction and Ontario proves impossible, extending the HSR tracks beyond Fullerton to Corona would be an alternative if BNSF is willing to co-operate. From there, trains would follow I-15 to San Diego. Due to the aforementioned narrow ROW into Anaheim, most trains would still have to bypass Curt Pringle's ARTIC.

A spur from Corona to San Bernardino would be possible, with the option of one day continuing on to Victorville.

HSR would still serve Palmdale airport. Public transportation to Ontario airport's three terminals could be implemented via motor coaches running on th anyhow planned new freeway lanes dedicated to buses and trucks.

Rafael said...

@ Mike Folf -

pretty much every HSR project ever implemented anywhere has been accompanied by political drama of one sort or another. Besides, this is California, where everything is more convoluted.

Brandon in San Diego said...

Rafael,
Yes, I believe I was the one that first cited NIMBY opposition to overhead catenary as one reason why the I-15 corridor was selected.

That aside, engineering solutions are possible for the bluffs, narrow ROW segments, or any other physcial barrier.

The I-15 corridor between the Inland Empire and San Diego is also not without its physical challenges. The I-15 itself is perhaps to narrow between Escondido and Miramar area to fit-in HSR at all and may need to be tunneled or elevated to squeeze through some areas. Other segments of the highway are too mountainous, have curves or grade changes that are too great to host HSR at all, and will likely need to be tunneled too.

Each alignment option will come with challenges. And because the current adopted preferred alignment on the table is there, it does not mean that it does not have its share too.

I remain supportive of an option that minimizes travel time, minimizes operating and construction costs, and maximizes ridership.

An Anaheim/Irvine to San Diego leg would not preclude a spur to the Inland Empire and Ontario Airport or Riverside. Mentioned in archives is that the IE has a large population and by themselves is substantial enough to host HSR. I am of the impression that the Valley of the Dirt People have as much legitimate an argument to be connected to HSR as Sacramento.

Rafael said...

@ Brandon -

yes, and there's the I-15 managed lanes project south of Escondido to consider as well. I'd be all for an LA-SD spur down the coast, with some subway tunnel sections under the westernmost lanes of I-5 to avoid the beachfront bits plus a spur to Colton along I-10 in the San Gabriel Valley.

Trouble is, I somehow doubt CHSRA is in any mood to reconsider the coast route at this juncture. They got burnt too badly the first time around. They recommended that corridor be upgraded to dual track, 110mph diesel operation and scoped it out of further consideration. Caltrans' Division of Rail is well placed to plan and operate such an upgrade to the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner - without any subway tunnels.

The issue is prop 1A(2008) funding. The few hundred million AB3034 reserved for Amtrak California in general and the Pacific Surfliner in particular just isn't enough. The $9 billion reserved for express HSR is needed for the SF-LA-Anaheim starter line.

Besides, state voters approved that as phase 1 of a network that would ultimately enable direct service from SF/Sac to San Diego via LAUS. If they've changed their mind and now want a two-tiered HSR system based on different propulsion technologies, they'll have to pass another ballot initiative to make that possible. CHSRA isn't going to be the cheerleader for that.

Brandon in San Diego said...

Rafael,
What does this have to do with what I wrote?

The issue is prop 1A(2008) funding. The few hundred million AB3034 reserved for Amtrak California in general and the Pacific Surfliner in particular just isn't enough. The $9 billion reserved for express HSR is needed for the SF-LA-Anaheim starter line.

Besides, state voters approved that as phase 1 of a network that would ultimately enable direct service from SF/Sac to San Diego via LAUS. If they've changed their mind and now want a two-tiered HSR system based on different propulsion technologies, they'll have to pass another ballot initiative to make that possible. CHSRA isn't going to be the cheerleader for that.
.
.
You should know that I know that stuff. I know very well the phasing and funding strategy being pursued, San Diego is no more in the first phase than Ontario airport, Riverside, or Corona!

Technology also is not in question... where did you come up with the notion that I thought it was? (nevermind, that was rhetorical)

However, you did remind me that 1A does have a slice available for the State sponsored services/corridors, such as LOSSAN. That corridor includes the coastal rails I was speaking too; which begs the question, "Would the State conceinvably invest in both HSR and Amtrak-style services in the same corridor?"

At the end of the day, probably not.

Additionally, an Anaheim to San Diego leg need not traverse the coastal corridor. It could go inland and pick-up the current adopted alignment near Temecula/Murrieta. ... albeit at great engineering and construction expense.

Board Watcher said...

@Mike Folf -
You know, watching the progress of CAHSR is, in a way, like a soap opera. I have no idea why, though.

The answer is as easy as A, B and not even C. Think "A" movies and actors vs. "B" actors, producers, etc. who could never make it beyond the soaps. It's the same for The Authority. They're "B" rated talent. It's their lack of professionalism and expertise that turns what could have been promising into a soap.

If they took their business plan seriously, if they followed the EIR process more honestly, if they conducted a truthful Prop 1A campaign -- if they conducted themselves as an "A" level board -- they would have avoided a lot of the drama. California would get a transportation system that's based on what makes sense, not this dramatical fiasco that's driven by ego and politics.

jim said...

@brandon

here's the reality. HSR will use i-215 not 15 to capture the greatest amount of EI passengers. HSR will not ever go down the beaches of the OC - not even after pigs fly. SD folks have the choice of LA via HSR or LA via surfliner. Surfliner is a ver good candidate for 110mph and the lack of 1a funds to do it isn't an issue because its the type of thing that CA rail and Amtrak proper, would do with different money. Amtrak is in a growth and upgrade mode now and fully intends to seize the moment of pro rail politics. Things that are likely to be in the table in the future are 110 for capital corridor, san joaquins and surfliners as well as the cascades.

Keep in mind also that when everyone is talking about SF-LA and SD-LA and SF-SD unlike, air travel ( and this is the real beauty of the current hsr design) you don't have to go to the big terminal locations. most people who are going to LA aren't really going to downtown LA. really, I don't know anyone who ever has any reason to go to downtown LA, where they are going is long beach, hollywood, anaheim, burbank, west covina, culver city, Irvine, alhambra and wherever else and hsr can get them to the closest hsr station which is likely not to be downtown LA. I mean when you want to get away from SD, where are you really going? probably not downtown LA cuz your friends don't live there, they live in long beach or santa monica, or Buena Park. Same goes for everyone else.

call me crazy but I stand by the notion that the real ridership on this thing, the bread and butter, is going to come from the less glamorous city pairs.

redwood city to tulare, frenso to riverside, irvine to butbank, and gilroy to merced.

i like the plan as is, and maybe im too optimistic but 'll thrilled to see them get it done as is without any further delay, as it will make my job so much easier. (and I think we will get the contract and we should) Ill be able to get anyone anywhere with this thing three times faster than I can get them there now. Build it, and hurry.

Alon Levy said...

China has the Beijing-Tianjin HSR line.

Beijing's car ownership is 118 per 1,000 people. Los Angeles's is 540 in the city itself, and more in the wealthy suburbs.

jim said...

Just received this article - amtrak is selling a bunch of its turboliners to whoever wants them - make your best offer. they can do 125 mph, maybe desert xpress should pick them up cheap.

turboliners

jim said...

"Customer satisfaction with America's airlines has dropped for the fourth straight year, according to a survey by J.D. Powers and Associates, an independent research firm."

Rafael said...

@ jim -

DesertXPress should buy UIC-compliant trainsets capable of 186mph (preferably 220mph) and electrified at 25kV AC.

Those Turboliners may have been the cats' meow in 1976, but that was 33 years ago. They could probably be refurbished and equipped with more powerful Tier 4 diesel engines, but the the cost of such a one-off effort would be high, as would that of maintaining the trainsets for a couple of additional decades of service.

On balance, probably not worth it. If you're going to lay new track, as DX will need to do, the cost of new rolling stock is peanuts.

Anonymous said...

Keeping pretending that so-called NIMBYs are a small group. The more information that comes out about the requirements for the peninsula, the larger the group gets.

Don't fool yourself. Or keep pretending, and this thing will never get built.

Anonymous said...

If the CHSRA continues with its no compromise-take no prisoners attitude vis-a vis the Peninsula they might very well end up with Altamont.

The price of keeping Pacheco could be giving up Caltrain.

Rafael said...

@ anon @ 1:00pm -

"The price of keeping Pacheco could be giving up Caltrain."

Where do you get this nonsense from? The HSR project will fund the full grade separation of the Caltrain corridor, widened to 75' in the few places it is currently narrower. There is no intention, zero, of canceling Caltrain service.

Post-electrification, Caltrain locals based on modern, lightweight UIC-compliant rolling stock will accelerate much faster, allowing local trains to serve more commuters. Granted, the future of the baby bullets remains to be determined, but HSR is asking to use Caltrain's corridor - not vice versa.

In theory at least, one possibility would be a new, strictly regional Caltrain HiSpeed service operating on the HSR tracks at HSR speeds and stopping only at the HSR stations between Gilroy and SF - at least during rush hour. Such a new service would be based on equipment capable of 125mph (not 220mph) top speed and complement the slower local trains running on the pair of tracks that are also used by UPRR. If CHSRA and Caltrain can negotiate a common platform height, passengers in a hurry could easily transfer between local and HiSpeed trains at several locations.

Change isn't necessarily for the worse. In fact, in the case of HSR in the SF peninsula, it will be for the better for the vast majority of residents and businesses.

NONIMBYS said...

"So Called" NIMBYS REALLY well that pretty
much sums what what you are!!! Dont worry IT will get built..a small loud mouth group of NIMS is not going to stop it..MOVE if you dont like it

Devil's Advocate said...

PMD-VIC is a more sensible option from LA compared to PMD-MOJ-BTW. The route would be shorter from LA and therefore better able to compete with air travel.
It is true that for people coming from North the Moj-Btw route is 50 miles shorter, rather than going down to PMD, however that's still a good strategic decision because air travel from central valley to LAS is not competitive no matter what (very expensive from both FAT and BFL), therefore the train would be a better choice even with the extra 50 miles. I doubt that there would be a lot of train travelers going to LAS from the Bay Area or Sac. The air options and the distance make air travel very competitive from those markets. Obviously it is possible that at a later date one might consider to build a connector from Moj to Btw, if there is enough volume from the CV to LAS.

Rafael said...

@ Devil's Advocate -

a connector between Mojave and Barstow would add no more than 15 miles to the Anaheim-LA-LV distance, assuming PMD-VCV could be implemented as a dead straight line. At an average speed of 180mph between Palmdale and Barstow, those 15 miles would amount to a delay of 5 minutes on a trip of 2-2.5 hours (depending on origin).

This delay would probably not materially affect HSR's ability to compete against air travel between Orange/LA County and Las Vegas. Some passengers simply won't switch to trains until and unless there's an HSR connector through Cajon Pass.

On the other hand, a detour via both Palmdale and Victorville would add around 33 miles (10-12 minutes) to SF-LV. At an estimated express time of 3h45m or so, that route would already be less competitive against aviation. Ergo, ridership on it might actually be more sensitive to structural delay.

All of the above times assume 220mph top speed on the DX tracks and the connector to them. Currently, DX' plans call for 150mph top speed because FRA doesn't have rules for higher speeds yet.

Someone would have to analyze line haul times and ridership projections in more detail to decide which connector alignment would deliver the optimal cost-benefit ratio for the network as a whole. My hunch is Mojave-Barstow along hwy 58, but I'm perfectly willing to keep an open mind.

looking on said...

The posters that keep stating, 50 or so NIMBYs on the peninsula is all that is involved in opposition, have absolutely no credibility.

The facts are that 5 Cities, at this point, and maybe 2 or more others perhaps to join, have had their councils join the coalition seeking to change how of if the train is going to come down the peninsula. The five cities are:

Menlo Park
Atherton
Palo Alto
Burlingame
Belmont

Their elected council persons are on the coalition board (PCC). They represent about 175,000. residents.

enough

Devil's Advocate said...

Even an HSR route via Mojave-Barstow, SF to LV would at least 580 miles (take out 50 miles from SJ) Given the wide availability of air options between the bay area and LAS, this market segment would not be competitive for the HST. The distance is too large, and the 3h45m estimate is very optimistic. The service from North Cal to LV would be primarily used from the CV, for which the air options are very poor, while the rail distance is optimal (about 475 miles from FNO and 280 from BFL). But it's true that PMD-MJV-BTW is only about 20 miles longer than PMD-VCT-BTW, therefore potentially only less than 10 extra minutes for people in LA. They can use that extra time on the train for some gambling on slot machines on board

Alon Levy said...

On the other hand, a detour via both Palmdale and Victorville would add around 33 miles (10-12 minutes) to SF-LV. At an estimated express time of 3h45m or so, that route would already be less competitive against aviation. Ergo, ridership on it might actually be more sensitive to structural delay.

HSR competes with cars rather than just planes. In countries with high car ownership, HSR can at best expect to have a small majority of the total travel market, with the rest split between cars and buses. A difference of 10 minutes may be critical in getting people to switch from I-15 to DX.

Anonymous said...

Their elected council persons are on the coalition board (PCC). They represent about 175,000. residents.


California has almost 37,000,000 people.

NONIMBYS said...

Really 50 nimbys..more like 3 big mouths and a few anti rail trolls that show up on here.."looking on"
AND how about all the people that voted and want HSR..FAR FAR more than your group

Brandon in San Diego said...

The point is clear, the state population overwhelms that of the peninsula cities, by about 240 to 1.

Although the difference is semantics, the State Department of Finance demographic unit puts the State's population at:

38,292,687 on January 1 2009

And the five cities listes sum to:

157,277 on January 1 2009

The State DOF effort is much more comprehensive that the US Census in non-decineal years.

Brandon in San Diego said...

Jim at 12:48

Again, I support an alignment that minimizes travel time, minimizes operating and construction costs, and maximizes ridership.

I choose not to foreclose having an open mind before additional planning efforts are undertaken.

looking on said...

47.5% of the voters of California voted against thei project. If the vote were taken today, Prop 1A wouldn't have a chance of passing.

My feeling is this project is headed just like what happened in Florida, eventual cancellation.

If we can get a new Governor elected who is opposed to this boondoggle, it will be all over.

In case you didn't notice, they just dropped the CA bonds rating another 2 notches; we are now 2 notches above junk bond status.

jim said...

@devils" I doubt that there would be a lot of train travelers going to LAS from the Bay Area or Sac."

oh you wouldn't beleive the demand. even with the current 11 hour train bus trip and a ridiculous 85 dollar one way fare, we sell vegas every day all the time - and not just to locals but there is a huge market for tourists, they ALL use the rail pass now to go to vegas. and do not underestimate the number of people there are who refuse to fly and or prefer the train at any speed. there's more of them than you can imagine. cut the travel time from norcal to vegas down to 3-4 hours and it will be sold out. I can say that with 100 percent confidence.

jim said...

@ looking on- our next governor will be even more in favor of the project than our current governor.

jim said...

@ brandon - minimizes travel for whom? that's the question. When you minimize travel for LAX SAN by maximizing travel for SNB and RIV you don't gain anything. You just leave a larger chunk of population without access. Its the broader coverage that will do more for ridership than speed. I guarantee it.

Anonymous said...

To my way of thinking, San Bernardino International Airport is the logical place for a high-speed rail station with intermodal connectivity. The facility lies about a mile and a half East of the proposed alignment, and a potential right-of-way along the Santa Ana River is readily available. Moreover, San Bernardino has a new Metrolink extension and a new B.R.T. system coming on-line in early 2012, and a new local railway connecting the city center with the Riverfront District, downtown Redlands, and the University of Redlands is expected by 2015. Moreover, the San Bernardino Valley alone is expecting to add, over the next ten years, another million residents to the four million already living in the Inland Empire.

Additionally, the City of San Bernardino has really well-conceived plans to re-establish itself as an urban core that competes with Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco, as well as with other first-tier cities outside the state and the country.

Any linkage with Las Vegas would, then, best be routed through Palm Springs. I'd, personally, love to be able to get high-speed rail service there.