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Editorial: Negative analysis of California high-speed rail is just politics

(The following editorial appeared on the Merced Sun-Star website on May 13, 2011.)

MERCED, Calif. — The Legislative Analyst's Office report misses the major reason that the San Joaquin Valley was selected for the first leg of California's high-speed rail project. The Valley is the perfect place to start given its relatively flat terrain and the region's open land between the population centers of Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The LAO report says the first phase should be from L.A. to Anaheim or San Jose to San Francisco. But those routes are complicated by land acquisition issues and enough distance between stops to get the train to a steady 200-plus mph.

The Valley route makes much more sense to establish the high-speed train, and work out engineering issues before moving on to areas of higher population densities.

Full story: Merced Sun-Star

Friday, May 13, 2011

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