Traveling now has the potential to get a whole lot easier with a proposed high-speed rail line that would link Vancouver to several U.S. cities. Should this project move forward, around 200,000 new jobs could be created as a result. Here’s everything you need to know so far.
According to a business case analysis by the Washington State Department of Transportation, a proposal for a new high-speed rail line linking Vancouver to the U.S. is being discussed.
This study has looked at linking Vancouver with Seattle and Portland. According to the study, the trail times between Vancouver and Seattle would be reduced by one hour with travel from Vancouver to Portland taking less than two hours. The rail would travel at speeds of approximately 400 km an hour.
According to the lengthy study, there would also be additional stops along the way in places like Surrey, Everett, or Bellingham. While this would increase travel times, it would attract more riders.
According to Global News, BC’s NDP government has already contributed $300,000 to this project.
The study states that Vancouver, Seattle, and Portland have the fourth, sixth, and tenth-most congested roads in North America respectively. A system like this could eliminate travel time, thus increasing the likelihood of transportation.
It also noted that a rail link like this could help eliminate greenhouse gas emissions and improve congestion on roads.
Not only would it help alleviate traffic, but the BC Ministry of Jobs, Trade and Technology has stated that there would be a massive economic benefit. It is estimated that the rail link could create an estimated $335 billion in economic growth and up to 200,000 new jobs.
It is estimated that the real line would cost anywhere between $24 billion and $42 billion in up-front construction expenses. While it may seem like a large fee, the study has stated that it would be worth the investment, as the revenue would cover operating costs by 2055.
The study estimated that the new rail system could attract anywhere from 1.7 million to three million annual trips by 2040. Around $156 million and $250 million would be generated by fare revenues alone.
The study does points out that development would not be for several years as construction would only be possible between 2027 to 2034.