According to Governor Kaine, Virginia has submitted pre-applications for more than $2 billion funding for high-speed rail projects under American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's or Stimulus funds for high speed rail.
Virginia has two types of projects lined up. The ready-to-go projects, or Track 1, is focused on I-95 corridor connecting Washington DC and Richmond, which is the state's most congested travel corridors. Strategically, it will also connect Amtrak's Northeast Corridor (see map on right) and the Southeast High Speed Rail Corridor (below), in which the state has invested some $197 million to this corridor - to date.
The projects, via Gov. Kaine office.
- Arkendale to Powell’s Creek: $72 million in rail infrastructure improvements between Fredericksburg and Prince William County, including 11 miles of third track; proposed for Round 1 funding under Track 1 as a “ready to go” project. This project could advance independently of the Washington, DC to Petersburg corridor program defined below.
- Washington, DC to Petersburg: $1.57 billion in rail infrastructure improvements such as additional tracks and signal, station and rail yard improvements; proposed for Round 1 funding under Track 2 as a corridor development program. This project includes Arkendale to Powell’s Creek as described above, in the event that FRA elects to fund the project as part of a corridor development program.
Southeast high speed rail corridor, via sehsr.org.
High speed rail in the southeast will mean top speeds of 110 mph and average speeds between 85-87 mph. Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia have joined together with the business communities in each state to form a four-state coalition to plan, develop and implement high speed rail in the Southeast. The system will be developed incrementally, upgrading existing rail rights-of-way.
Looking at both maps, based on location alone, Virginia is on strategic located to take advantage of the Stimulus funding for high speed rail that connect tracks up and down East Coast.
Richmond/Hampton Roads: $330-$844 million in rail infrastructure improvements to support the introduction of high speed rail service between Richmond and Hampton Roads; proposed for Round 2 funding under Track 2. This project is proposed for Round 2 since a federal Environmental Impact Statement is currently underway to select the high speed route, and should be completed prior to Round 2 grant awards. The cost is expressed in a range since the exact route has not yet been determined.
The timeline for these projects: Round 1 is in Fall 2009 and round 2 in Spring 2010. This high speed rail project is for the next Governor of Virginia to complete... (Kaine's term is up this year).
I can see more TODs sprouting up here and there along DC-Richmond corridor..