Within weeks, we expect decisions from the U.S. Department of Transportation on where to invest billions in passenger-rail funding from the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. You can learn on our site about three of the contenders: Brightline West, which would launch...
A number of railway companies have announced their plans to operate high-speed trains between the UK and mainland Europe, via the Channel Tunnel. For nearly thirty years Eurostar has been the sole passenger rail operator using the tunnel, but it now seems likely they will have competition soon.
The Channel Tunnel is owned and operated by GetLink, which leases track access to Eurostar. GetLink has said that the tunnel is designed for almost double the current rail traffic level. It operates on ‘open access’ basis, guaranteeing equal rights of access to any rail operators traveling between British and European networks.
Heuro is a newly established railway company that wants to operate between Amsterdam, Paris, and London. Their goal is to run much more frequent service, with a total of 16 trips per day from Amsterdam to Paris, and 15 trips between Paris and London. They plan to purchase high-speed trains that can operate up to 186 mph, and are in talks with several rolling stock manufacturers.
Evolyn is another high-speed rail startup company looking to launch cross-Channel service from London to Paris. Evolyn has agreed to purchase 12 trains from rolling stock manufacturers Alstom, with an option to purchase an additional four trains. In October, Evolyn announced that they expect to begin running trains in 2025, and be in full service by 2026. Evolyn wants to run non-stop service between London St. Pancras International and Paris Nord stations. They are currently negotiating track access.
In addition to these two new potential operators, there are rumors that Virgin Trains is interested in operating service between the UK and Europe as well. Arriva and Qbuzz also requested track access to operate trains between Amsterdam and a number of destinations, including Paris, Berlin and Eindhoven.
There is hope that these new competitors could lead to more frequent service, lower fares, better amenities and service to more locations. We’ve seen multiple competitors on other routes in Europe lead to better service for travelers. In Italy, since Italo began running service to compete with state-owned Trenitalia in 2021, prices have fallen and ridership has grown.
The region’s explosive growth, wide-open spaces, road congestion, and thriving tourist industry have primed it for high-quality train service. Momentum for connecting it with fast, frequent trains is building in several ways.
High Speed Rail Alliance Staff Update
Alliance executive director Rick Harnish attended a meeting hosted by the Commuter Rail Coalition to learn more about passenger rail law and liability issues.
Alliance deputy director Chris Ott joined rail advocates from All Aboard Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Association of Railroad Passengers at the state’s annual railroad conference, hosted on November 7 by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. The conference focused on freight but discussed passenger rail as well. This included a talk by Amtrak’s director of network development Arun Rao, and manager for government affairs Ismael Cuevas, called “Recovery and Building Towards a New Era for Rail.”
Articles We Enjoyed
U.S. lack of high-speed rail has economic implications. Climate change makes the need even more stark. As Forbes reports: “So far this year, there have been over 1 million flight arrival delays, accounting for about 23% of all flights, the highest rate in a decade.”
You did it. Thank you to everyone who responded to the Alliance’s call to action, to block cuts to Amtrak. At least for now, that proposal has been stopped.
New York’s moderate Republican representatives derailed a transportation funding bill last week over concerns about cuts proposed for the national rail carrier Amtrak.
Windsor will be at the center of a new cross-border passenger rail line connecting Toronto and Chicago.
Passenger rail is getting another voice at the federal level. This week, the Surface Transportation Board announced it will form a new Passenger Rail Advisory Committee. Its 18 voting members will provide advice and guidance.
David Cochrane, Senior Vice President, Project Management at WSP shares five lessons learned from the field, addresses the intricacies and challenges inherent to these complex megaprojects, and offers tried and proven recommendations.
The EU’s rail revolution aims for sustainability through liberalization, promoting competition, innovation, and improved service quality.
An opinion piece about riding Brightline’s new service from Miami to Orlando.
Modern night trains now give travelers in Europe convenient, comfortable, affordable options for overnight travel. The Alliance strongly believes that you should have this option in North America too.
Rick Harnish, executive director of the High-Speed Rail Alliance, said the budget cut is a statement from some members of the House: “If you don’t drive, then you’re not really welcome to participate in our society.”
Canada plans high-speed rail to link Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, and Quebec City. An independent subsidiary of the national railroad, Via Rail, will construct and operate it.
Florida Department of Transportation leaders plan to hold a series of public meetings to gather thoughts on the proposed Sunshine Corridor next month.
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