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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 23,
CONTACT: Rachel Wall, 916.384.9026
RAIL AUTHORITY FINALIZES FEDERAL GRANT AGREEMENT
FOR DESIGN WORK ON SAN FRANCISCO PENINSULA Signaling improvements to existing rail system would prepare for
and optimize safety during high-speed rail construction
SACRAMENTO – The California High-Speed Rail Authority has signed a
grant agreement with the Federal Railroad Administration to obligate $16
million to fund the design of signaling technology to optimize safety on the
Bay Area segment, benefitting the Caltrain system and improving train control
and safety on the corridor during high-speed rail construction. Caltrain is the
regional commuter system connecting San Francisco to San Jose – the same
52-mile rail corridor in which the state’s high-speed train will operate.
“Keeping people safe is our top priority and positive train
control technology will ensure California’s rail network transports passengers
more safely and efficiently than ever before,” said Secretary LaHood.
“This comprehensive safety technology will improve passenger service along the
highly-traveled corridor between San Francisco and San Jose and will ultimately
benefit the entire high-speed rail system in California.”
The technology, Positive Train Control, will increase safety and
operations of the passenger train network that currently carries 41,000 people
per day. The improved control and management of the network is necessary to
upgrade and then maintain service during the future construction of the state’s
high-speed rail system.
“This latest step forward in federal support for California’s
project means that we’ll be able to improve safety and service in the near term
and integrate our project with local systems in the long term,” said Roelof van
Ark, Chief Executive Officer of the California High-Speed Rail Authority.
“Caltrain continues to be an important partner in bringing the benefits of
high-speed rail to the Bay Area.”
The agreement funds the design of a Positive Train Control system.
Positive Train Control is an advanced technology used primarily for avoiding
train-to-train collisions, monitoring train locations, preventing train
incursion into track work zones, and preventing speeding and over-speed
The Peninsula Joint Powers Board (as Caltrain is formally known)
is providing the matching funds to the federal award.
“This initial federal investment will enable Caltrain to take an
important step forward in our efforts to provide Bay Area communities with a
modernized, sustainable commuter rail system that is fully compatible with
future high speed rail service,” said Caltrain Executive Director Mike Scanlon.
“The Administration and our Congressional leaders should be applauded for
recognizing the importance of optimizing safety and promoting integration with
regional systems as we continue to plan a project that will transform the way
The technology will benefit the future interface between Caltrain
and the state’s high-speed train, which is being designed on a shared rail
corridor. Positive Train Control will reduce the technical risks, provide a
safer and more functional work environment during high-speed rail construction
and then into operations and reduce the project cost for this section.
California’s High-Speed Train Project
The California High-Speed Rail Authority is developing an 800-mile
high-speed train system that will operate at speeds of up to 220 miles per
hour, connecting the state’s major urban centers, including the Bay Area,
Fresno, Los Angeles and San Diego. The first phase of the project, San
Francisco to Los Angeles and Anaheim, is projected to cost $43 billion. Initial
infrastructure construction will begin in the Central Valley, the backbone of
the system, in 2012.
The environmental review and preliminary engineering work on the
San Francisco to San Jose segment of the state’s high-speed rail system is
currently underway. Learn more about the San Francisco to San Jose segment here.
The project is being funded through a voter-approved state bond,
federal funding awards and public-private partnerships.
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