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Ask the Expert

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Letter: Do we need California high speed rail now?

Posted: May 22, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: May 22, 2012 2:00 a.m.
 

Let’s get answers to these questions before embarking on this project:

Where are the environmental and financial studies that eliminate the route through the Interstate 5 corridor?

What is the purpose of looping 70-80 miles through Palmdale and Lancaster?

How can this be cheaper to build than what was described in the initiative? Are we paying for a route that is politically or monetarily advantageous to group that has business interests in the Antelope Valley?

The description of this route is being advanced as a transportation hub. The airport in A.V. has not shown potential in numerous attempts.

Are the taxpayers funding a starting point for private high speed rail to Las Vegas?

The Metrolink line to the Antelope Valley is underused and not profitable. How can the high speed rail hope to be profitable through this route?

Routing the train through Tehachapi is seismically risky. How will this risk be mitigated?

How much private property will have to be removed from the tax rolls? Has that cost been figured into the project?

Where will the electricity come from to power the trains? Will we need to shut down power and air conditioning in government buildings in order to keep these trains running?

There has been no mention of the effect of noise pollution to schools, wildlife and people living in close proximity to the tracks.

How will the tall and unsightly viaducts that the train will run upon help to “keep California beautiful”?

Why would we want to build a train using obsolete technology? Why not a maglev?

Education funding is being severely cut, but we are about to fund billions for a train with uncertain ridership or return on the investment.

With very expensive fares to pay for the high cost of construction and operation, is this system designed for use by high-income users only? 

When the folks that are promoting this project can answer these questions with realistic data, I will be on board with high speed rail. 

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