by Jerome a Paris
Tue Feb 17th, 2009 at 09:09:15 AM EST
Given how European Tribune enjoys Train Blogging, and our friendly links with the California High Speed Train blog I thought this was worth flagging, as unexpected good news, given how things had looked like until the last minute:
Obama plots huge railroad expansion
Railroads made Chicago, and now a Chicago-rich White House wants to return the favor: remaking rail with a huge new federal investment in high-speed passenger trains.
The $787.2 billion economic recovery bill — to be signed by President Barack Obama on Tuesday — dedicates $8 billion to high-speed rail, most of which was added in the final closed-door bargaining at the instigation of White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel.
It’s a sum that far surpasses anything before attempted in the United States — and more is coming. Administration officials told Politico that when Obama outlines his 2010 budget next week, it will ask for $1 billion more for high-speed rail in each of the next five years.
Now that would be major, major progress.