California High-Speed Rail Draft Approved

30 April 2009 (Last Updated April 30th, 2009 18:30)

A high-speed rail line connecting Las Vegas to California has moved a step closer for implementation, with the Federal Railroad Administration passing the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Desertxpress. The 180-mile line will run on exclusive tracks along Interstate 15 betw

A high-speed rail line connecting Las Vegas to California has moved a step closer for implementation, with the Federal Railroad Administration passing the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Desertxpress.

The 180-mile line will run on exclusive tracks along Interstate 15 between Victorville, California and Las Vegas if approved.

Trips between states could take an hour and 20 minutes at 150mph, according to reports.

Desertxpress Enterprise – the entity developing the project – is expected to invest $3.5–4bn on the project in addition to the $25m it has already spent on the EIS process.

According to the EIS, DesertXpress is forecast to carry more than 10 million people per year by 2015.

DesertXpress Enterprises' partner and spokesman, Sig Rogich, said: "The project is estimated to reduce up to 360 million pounds of CO2 emissions in the Interstate 15 corridor by greatly reducing automobile travel and replacing it with energy-efficient mass transportation in one of America's most-congested transportation corridors."