The Department of Transportation is proud to support President Obama’s vision for new and improved passenger rail service for America.
Nearly 150 years ago, President Abraham Lincoln approved construction of the Union-Pacific Railroad. It would stretch from Iowa to California. The work of building cutting-edge railways in America has not yet been completed. With President Obama's high-speed rail initiative, we can resume that work today.
All around the country, people are asking for more rail service. Ridership on Amtrak, light rail, commuter rail, and subways, is on the rise. And across Europe and Asia, people enjoy the comfort and convenience of high-speed train travel. That’s why it’s so important for us to jump-start a new era in American train travel.
We need to develop new passenger rail corridors where it makes sense to do so--and integrate them with our highways, airports, transit hubs, and urban centers.
It’s the right thing to do for our mobility – and for the environment.A single railroad track can carry as many people as a 10-lane highway. That could help to relieve congestion. And rail systems powered by clean diesel or electric power are energy-efficient. They’re capable of removing billions of pounds of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere each year.
Years from now, Americans will look back on this time as a game-changer. A time when we got serious about putting public transportation to work on behalf of all Americans. A time when we recognized that passenger rail can play a key role in making our communities more livable and sustainable.
We're creating jobs while repositioning our economy and supply chains for the future. But, it's not just job creation; it's mobility transformation. The President understands that "investing in our transportation, investing in our infrastructure pays dividends over the long term."
Vice President Biden said it so well when he described the President as a "Man who will have transformed transportation in this country."
Can we really do this? As the President said this morning, "It's already being done; it's just not being done here. And there's no reason for it; this is America."