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New passenger rail study

We’ll see if this goes anywhere.

The Texas Department of Transportation is launching a two-year, $14 million study of passenger rail service between South Texas and Oklahoma City.

That could mean bringing high-speed rail or, at the least, finding ways to connect the state’s major cities with some type of rail service.

The study also will examine how to fund these projects, which could involve the private sector.

The overall goal is to reduce congestion in Texas, officials said.

But it could be years — and many billions of dollars — before that’s a reality.

The study essentially will give officials and policymakers a strategic plan that federal officials can reference when funding becomes available.

“What it does is it gets Texas caught up, as far as our planning level studies … that would put us in line for future funding for environmental design and construction,” said Jennifer Moczygemba, rail system section director for TxDOT.

TxDOT’s press release is here. Passenger rail through the I-35 corridor makes a lot of sense and should be part of the long-term strategy to improve mobility and fight traffic congestion there, but I’ll wait till something actually happens to get excited about this. The Statesman and Swamplot have more.

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One Comment

  1. cb says:

    It is amazing how long it takes to get transportation-mass transit projects planned and completed. A high speed rail line from South Texas to Oklahoma City, if completed will be a couple of decades from now at least…maybe around the time the current Harris County light rail projects are completed.