The US High Speed Rail Association (US HSR) was recently established to promote a state-of-the-art national high speed rail system throughout the country. Following President Obama’s recent announcement of a new era of high speed rail in America, US HSR was formed to help advance this visionary initiative. President Obama’s initiative lays the foundation for a sustainable transportation future for America. Recently the US House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure unveiled legislation whereby it would provide $50 billion over six years for planning and development of high speed rail in designated corridors. This project will help revive the US economy, create millions of jobs, lower the US’ dependence on oil, increase mobility, and reduce climate change.
US HSR’s vision includes an advanced 17,000 mile high speed rail network constructed in phases across America to meet the same high standards currently in operation around the world. This includes state-of-the-art dedicated track, advanced control systems, elegant multi-modal train stations and top of the line 220 mph trains. The Association will hold a number of conferences and events to bring together the many advisors, policy makers and suppliers. These events will help advance the industry and build political support for this new national system. The first of these conferences is scheduled for October 22-23, 2009 in Washington, DC. In addition, US HSR will host a number of tours of the best high speed rail systems in Europe and Asia to showcase, firsthand, the world’s best systems.
US HSR works closely with the UIC (International Union of Railways) in Paris to bring their international expertise and standards for high speed rail development to America. This unique collaboration will help America fast track its 21st century transportation system. UIC’s Director General Jean-Pierre Loubinoux will serve on the Association’s Advisory Board bringing extensive high speed rail expertise in the development of new systems.
“The ambitious plan recently publicized by President Obama in the framework of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act announces a fascinating time for railway development in America,” said Loubinoux. “A competitive high performance railway system – including a large network of high speed links – will constitute one of the pillars of US policies for transportation and sustainable development.” UIC’s neutral position will deliver useful information and advice on the various issues connected to the development of high speed rail transportation systems. Other Advisory Board members include Norman F. Anderson, President & CEO of CG/LA Infrastructure in Washington, DC; Katherine Aguilar Perez, Executive Director of the Urban Land Institute Los Angeles; and Anthony Perl, Ph.D., Director of the Urban Studies Program at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada.
US HSR is led by a team of seasoned professionals, including Andy Kunz, a long time promoter of high speed rail systems in America. “It is an exciting time in America for high speed rail, thanks to President Obama,” said Kunz. “We look forward to working closely with the administration in carrying out this important work.”