High speed rail: why we should build it across America
Infrastructure in America is in desperate need of a refresh. When the long-promised comprehensive spending program by the feds is finally implemented, it should include revamping large parts of the rail network.
In many parts of the country, experts are calling for the conversion of Amtrak’s diesel-powered fleet into an electric-run high speed rail system. Capable of hitting speeds of 200 miles per hour, it would compare favorably with what one finds in Japan and France.
Some critics may pan it as a white elephant project, but others see huge benefits in its implementation. You can count John Kleinheinz Fort Worth as a believer, as he has actually put skin in the game as a backer of a HSR (high speed rail) line between Houston and Dallas.
Still don’t see how building HSR (high speed rail) around America would be a good thing? In this post, we will show you how building this form of transport just makes sense.
1) Most Americans live in cities these days
For centuries, America has seen itself as a nation with country roots. Our biggest cities have always hogged the limelight, but until a generation ago, a majority of Americans called villages and towns home rather than cities.
These days, 63% live in urban areas thanks to a trend that shows no signs of abating. Here’s the part that’s relevant to the article: most of us travel from one city to the next these days, as opposed to heading to and from the countryside.
Because of this, HSR is starting to make economic sense, as the growth in the number of people willing to ride the rails is starting to make these sorts of projects viable.
While Amtrak routes already exist between major cities, speeding them up is of vital importance, as it will make this medium more appealing to those with busy schedules.
2) We need to get serious about fighting climate change
Climate change has become more sinister lately, as strong hurricanes seem to spawn at the drop of a hat and extended droughts are beginning to threaten the water supplies of entire cities.
This has caused world leaders to respond with an urgency not seen before. If we want to ramp up the battle against global warming, converting our fossil fuel burning locomotives to an HSR system needs to happen.
Even if the power isn’t entirely clean to begin with, the effects of taking cars off the road and planes out of the sky will help curb carbon emissions considerably.
3) Life will become easier for drivers
Never taken a train in your life and have no plans to do so? You should still be on the side of HSR – here’s why.
As our biggest cities continue to sprawl, its expressways have been pushed to the breaking point. The implementation of HSR promises to provide relief by giving inter-city travelers a reason to leave their car at home.
With fewer vehicles on the road, getting from one place to another will be less stressful, as those less inclined to drive will no longer have to do so.