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Dispel the myths about high-speed rail in California.

The California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) is responsible for planning, designing, building and operating the first high-speed rail system in the nation. California high-speed rail will connect the mega-regions of the state, contribute to economic development and a cleaner environment, create jobs and preserve agricultural and protected lands. This high-profile project has garnered a lot of publicity, which in turn has led to speculation and rumor. When considering the impact high-speed rail has on California, it is important to separate fact from fiction. Download fact sheet.

Drag the arrows to the left or right to reveal myths versus facts

Fact

The California high-speed rail system will connect 6 of the 10 largest cities in the state.

Myth:

High-speed rail will be a train to nowhere.

Fact

Other countries with high-speed rail systems service 1.6 billion passengers per year. Amtrak's California corridors are among the busiest in the nation, with 11.5 million people boarding and departing from California's trains in 2019.

Myth:

No one rides trains anymore.

Fact

In blended/shared corridors, trains will be slowed to 110 miles per hour, as required by regulations. However, in other areas speeds will top 220 miles per hour.

Myth:

High-speed rail will not be high-speed.

Fact

High-speed rail in California will run on 100% renewable energy. It will be all electric all the time.

Myth:

California High-Speed Rail will be diesel-powered.

Fact

Providing the same people-carrying capacity as high-speed rail from San Francisco to Los Angeles would require 4,200 new highway lane miles, 91 additional airport gates and two new airport runways costing between $122B to $199B, not including operations and maintenance costs; more expensive than the $63B to $98B for HSR.

Myth:

High-speed rail is a waste of money. We can expand our roads and airports.

Fact

California's population is projected to grow to more than 45M by 2050. Transportation is a key contributor to emissions, and Los Angeles and San Francisco rank among the top ten most gridlocked U.S. cities. The high-speed rail system is a key component of achieving net-zero emissions by transforming and reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector, helping California achieve climate goals.

Myth:

High-speed rail is a solution in search of a problem.