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Posted at 12:11 PM ET, 12/30/2010

High-speed rail panel to meet

By Jennifer Buske

A commission formed to advance high-speed rail initiatives in Virginia and North Carolina will hold its second meeting next week.

The Virginia-North Carolina Interstate High Speed Rail Compact was authorized by Congress this year and will focus on high-speed rail initiatives including the southeast high-speed rail corridor that may eventually run between Washington and Charlotte, N.C.

On Jan. 7 the group will meet at 11 a.m. at the General Assembly Building in Senate Room 3 in Richmond (910 Capitol St.).

The group is chaired by Virginia Sen. John C. Watkins (R- Chesterfield) and includes five legislative representatives from both states. At the January meeting, the group is scheduled to hear about rail enhancement projects in the Richmond to Hampton Roads, Richmond to Washington and Richmond to Raleigh corridors. A report from the Southeast High Speed Rail Conference will also be presented.

Virginia received funding for high-speed passenger rail projects twice this year. In the first round, the federal stimulus program distributed $8 billion for high-speed rail, with Virginia getting roughly $75 million. In the second round, the Department of Transportation distributed $2.4 billion. The state was awarded roughly $45 million to begin the preliminary engineering and environmental surveys needed to prepare for high-speed rail in the commonwealth.

North Carolina received about $567 million during the two rounds of high-speed grants.

Related stories:

State projects will drive high-speed rail funding

DOT redirects high-speed rail funds

Va. gets $45 million for high-speed rail

High-speed rail in the East? Not so fast.

By Jennifer Buske  | December 30, 2010; 12:11 PM ET
Categories:  Passenger Rail, Transportation News, Virginia  
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