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California gets federal high-speed rail funds

An artist's rendering of the proposed high-speed rail line station in San Jose.

California, Illinois and 13 other states, along with Amtrak, will share $2 billion in federal grants aimed at developing high-speed rail service, money that had been rejected by Florida, officials announced Monday.

California Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer praised the award. In February, the senators urged U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to send their state the money Florida had rejected.

"This is great news for Californians, who have already made strong financial commitments to infrastructure projects," Feinstein said. "I applaud Secretary LaHood for responding to our request and allowing the state of California to utilize these funds to advance high-speed rail. No other state is as ready and able to lead the way in demonstrating the viability of high-speed rail."

"I'm thrilled at this latest investment in California's high-speed rail system, which will create thousands of jobs and help us build a cleaner and more efficient transportation system to move people all across our state," Boxer said.

The grant will be awarded to the California High Speed Rail Authority to extend the currently proposed Central Valley route an additional 20 miles, they said. The Central Valley route would eventually provide 220 mph high-speed rail service from Los Angeles to San Francisco.

Read more about federal funds for high-speed rail.

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-- Richard Simon and Michael Muskal

Photo: An artist's rendering of the proposed high-speed-rail station in San Jose. Credit: California High-Speed Rail Authority / Bloomberg

 
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