Calif. High-Speed Rail, Amtrak To Research Joint Train Purchases

Both agencies may create a standard for high-speed trains in the U.S.

California High-Speed Rail has teamed up with Amtrak to research buying similar high-speed trains for their respective rail systems on the East and West coasts.

At a joint news conference held this morning in Washington, D.C., Amtrak President Joe Boardman joined California High-Speed Rail Authority Chairman Dan Richard to announce that both agencies will partner to research ordering and purchasing trains of similar specifications, potentially creating a standard for high-speed trains in the U.S.

"High-speed rail is right for America, and Amtrak working with California to advance both our programs makes a lot of sense," Boardman said in a statement.

The two agencies could order as many as 60 trains over the next 10 years, officials said today.

Amtrak currently operates trains that reach speeds up to 150 mph throughout its Northeast Corridor, which serves cities including Boston, New York City, Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C.

California High-Speed Rail plans to operate trains running up to 220 mph between Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Sacramento.

CHSR is expected to break ground in the Central Valley this summer and could be completed by 2029, according to official estimates.

East and West Coast high-speed rail agencies hope to "create efficiencies" by coordinating efforts to request information on trains and potentially make joint purchases in the future.

CHSRA CEO Jeff Morales said in a statement that the partnership between the two agencies "makes a lot of sense" and that California and the Northeast Corridor were "bookends for America's high-speed rail."

"We are pleased to join with Amtrak and look forward to continued collaboration in the future," Morales said.

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