Written by Gordon Webster, Jr.
Imagine a high-speed rail system that is 100-percent privately funded, only a few years behind schedule and actually faces competition pressures.
You don’t have to.
Texas is about a year away from starting construction on a bullet-train route to connect Houston and Dallas — a distance of about 240 miles.
With a budget of $15 billion, the system is being funded by private investors who see opportunity in new hotels, housing and commercial development along the route. Construction was projected to begin in 2016, but officials believe a more realistic timeline for a groundbreaking is as early as next year.
Now the widely-touted “Hyperloop” is being considered as possible competition for the high-speed rail line in Texas. This system is akin to a pneumatic tube, shooting riders in pods though a system at speeds of up to 600 mph.
California’s high-speed rail project differs in many respects, but the Texas project is a good case study to compare and contrast how things get done in the Golden State compared to the Lone Star State.
Be sure to read the upcoming Aug. 17 print edition of The Business Journal to see our special report on the Texas high-speed rail project and how it stacks up against California’s effort.