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Source : Texas Central
May 11, 2021
Author : Patty Rodriguez
“The $1.6 billion contract with Kiewit includes the installation of core electrical systems including critical safety and systems elements like Traction power, signaling and communications equipment to enable the trains to operate safely and ensure the tracks and operators communicate with one another and with network operations,” Texas Central said in a press release.
Kiewit project director at affiliate Mass Electric, Mark Williams, commended Texas Central on their “commitment to delivering the first high speed rail system in the United States.”
Texas Central noted that Kiewit and Mass Electric are “national leaders in installing complex and large-scale electric systems.”
"Combining their experience with the safety of an integrated system is essential to the operation of the Texas Central Railroad,” CEO Carlos Aguilar said.
Despite legal battles over property in the path of the train, the company won the right in court to use eminent domain. While the project was originally to start in 2019, the company says it will instead begin construction this year, with testing and commissioning in 2025 and full service in 2026.
While the project is going to be the first high speed rail line in the United States, it’s also Texas’ biggest infrastructure project ever, the company boasts.
And yet the train will only have three stops. Per the company, the line “will connect the fourth and fifth largest economies in the country, North Texas and Greater Houston, in less than 90 minutes, with one stop in the Brazos Valley.”
“The project will create an estimated 17,000 jobs during construction and more than 1,500 direct permanent jobs when the train is fully operational. Over the next 25 years, this project will have a direct cumulative economic impact of $36 billion,” the company adds.
On a typical weekday morning, driving the distance between Houston and Dallas can take about three and a half hours, but the Texas Department of Transportation estimates that driving the distance in the year 2035 could take six and a half hours, so the project really can’t come soon enough.