Travis County Judge says Austin should be part of Texas high-speed rail plan

Travis County Judge says Austin should be part of Texas central high-speed rail plan | CIO Women Magazine

The Travis County Judge said Austin should be included in the proposed plan as Amtrak and a Texas central revealed a potential agreement to connect the state’s two largest cities by high-speed train on Wednesday.

Amtrak announced on Wednesday that Texas Central and it have applied for a number of federal grants “in connection with further study and design work” on a 240-mile line between Houston and Dallas with a stop in College Station. Amtrak estimates that the 205 mph route would take less than 90 minutes to complete.

Initiating Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

Judge Andy Brown of Travis County stated on Wednesday that he wanted the proposed route to go from College Station through Austin, on to San Antonio, and even farther. The next step towards building a line to Travis County and beyond would be initiating an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), according to the county’s statement.

Since entering into agreements to provide through-ticketing using the Amtrak reservation system and other support services for the envisioned high-speed train line in 2016, according to Amtrak, it has been working with Texas Central.

In June 2022, the Texas Supreme Court decided that Texas Central had the right to use eminent domain. The company’s CEO and president had left, according to a Texas Tribune piece from August 2022, and property acquisition “seemed to have all but stopped in the last two years.”

In response, a corporate spokesman who works for the consulting organization that responds to Texas Central’s media inquiries indicated the project was still in the planning stages.

Corporations could take property through eminent domain

After Texas Central Railway CEO Carlos Aguilar resigned in 2017, critics declared the idea of a bullet train dead. One of the stated objections to the proposed railway was whether the corporation could take property through eminent domain, but a ruling by the Texas Supreme Court on July 8, 2022, confirmed its authority to do so.

According to the news announcement, Byford joined Amtrak in April 2023 and is concentrating on building a team to offer “high-speed opportunities across the U.S.”

Since 2013, Texas Central has been putting up an effort to get a train moving, including arranging for a potential constructor in 2021. However, the project has encountered opposition from Texas lawmakers and landowners along the route. In 2021, six rural counties filed a lawsuit opposing the project, and the Texas Legislature approved a law forbidding the state from spending any money on it.

In June 2022, Texas Central CEO Carlos Aguilar and its board members resigned due to what appeared to be a dead end. Since that time, consultant Michael Bui has been leading the company as CEO.



Social Media

Most Popular

Get The Latest Updates

Subscribe To Our Weekly Newsletter

Related Posts