Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Trans-America Express

The US Congress is defying the Bush-Cheney administration and investing in the national rail infrastructure. Today, the House of Representatives voted 311-104 in favor of investment, even including Republicans who've opposed such concepts before. Veto proof. As soon as things are worked out with the Senate, it'll be a done deal to the tune of about fifteen billion dollars. A fairly modest start, but it is a start. Ridership on intra- and inter-city rail is way up, largely due to the higher costs of driving.

Amtrak, formed in 1971 (six months after the Environmental Protection Agency and a year after the first Earth Day), serves most of the continental United States -- though not Dick Cheney's Wyoming base. Way to go, Dick! There's a lot of potential for adding new routes as well as upgrading existing ones.

Today's Rune: Strength.


Charles Gramlich said...

A good idea.

the walking man said...

Sweet! Does this mean the Fed is going to invest in urban light rail systems where there is none?

I liked train travel, especially when the freights were just starting out of the yard and it was easy to hop aboard.

Johnny Yen said...

Great news. Travelling in other countries makes one realize how pathetic our rail system is. There are whole states that are not served by the national rail system. It is laughable that I am unable to get from Chicago to Knoxville, where my parents live, by train.

Sidney said...

I got to ride an Amtrak train when I was a reporter. It was cool. I need to write a post about the experience. There were some funny parts too.