U.S. DOT to cancel nearly USD 1 billion grant for California HSR

The U.S. Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) intends to cancel USD 929 million financing yet to be paid for the California High-Speed Rail project. In addition, the U.S. Department of transport is actively exploring every legal option to seek the return from California of USD 2.5 billion in Federal funds FRA previously granted for this now-defunct project, the Department said.
In an official letter to the California HSR Authority (CHSRA), FRA Administrator Ronald Batory said that this action is considered because CHSRA ‘has failed to make reasonable progress on the project as defined in the Agreement, significantly endangering substantial performance.’
Based on CHSRA reports, FRA concluded that the project will not be completed by 2022, as stipulated in the Agreement. In addition, based on findings on FRA’s oversight and monitoring, CHSRA has failed to take the appropriate corrective actions to ensure the delivery of the project.
The USD 68 billion high-speed rail project envisages the construction of a 1300 km (800 miles) system linking Southern California, Sacramento San Joaquin Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area.
The construction works were launched in 2015, and the opening of project’s first section was scheduled for 2022.

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