Peninsula Lawmakers Want High-Speed Rail to Run on Caltrain Tracks

Congresswoman Anna Eshoo and state Sen Joe Simitian of Palo Alto, and state Assemblyman Rich Gordon of Los Altos held a joint press conference today calling for the California High-Speed Rail Authority to abandon plans to build elevated tracks through the Peninsula and instead integrate the project into the existing Caltrain system.

KQED’s Kelly Wilkinson attended the press conference and fills us in:

Kelly Wilkinson on today’s call for high-speed rail change by Peninsula officeholders :http://ww2.kqed.org/news/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2011/04/WilkinsonHSR.mp3|titles=WilkinsonHSR Robert Cruickshank at the California High Speed Rail Blog has a post up about today’s announcement. He’s less than enthusiastic:

Big picture: Nobody here is showing real leadership. Eshoo, Simitian, and now Gordon have all been cowed by a small group of NIMBYs into opposing an aerial solution which, as we’ve talked about before, works perfectly well for other Bay Area communities such as Albany and Oakland’s Rockridge neighborhood. These three elected officials do realize that large majorities of their constituents support high speed rail and clearly they’re trying to find a middle ground between the vocal yet unrepresentative NIMBYs, and the silent majority who actually matter.

Some of these proposals are worth considering, others might not be. But it’s unfortunate to see all three of these electeds basically giving in to the NIMBYs on some core points, and ignoring and even mocking the support for HSR that their constituents and the people of California as a whole have shown.

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Jon Brooks

Jon Brooks writes mostly on film for KQED Arts. He is also an online editor and writer for KQED's daily news blog, News Fix. Jon is a playwright whose work has been produced in San Francisco, New York, Italy, and around the U.S.

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