What happens when you cross big construction contracts with environmental happy talk? You end up with less money for useful local mass transit, less money for education, less money for other services. You also end up with new sprawl into the desert and regional ag land.
California's high-speed rail system would cost nearly $100
billion when the main north-south link is completed, an eye-popping
figure for a state with massive annual budget deficits and a
Still, the business plan released Tuesday by the California
High-Speed Rail Authority said the project is manageable if it's
built in smaller segments over 20 years.
The plan also predicted that estimated ridership figures would
make the system profitable and noted that new freeways and airport
expansions to deal with the state's expanding population would cost
It's too soon to know whether the $98.5 billion price tag _ more
than double the previous $43 billion cost projection _ will be a
deal-breaker for lawmakers, who will decide whether to move forward
after a public comment period.