Saturday, March 13, 2010

Perspective on CREATE

Chicago Business Today provides some perspective on the CREATE program and the funding challenges for completing each of it's 71 projects (formerly 78 projects until CN acquired the EJ&E railway). I am aware that this blog devotes quite a bit of attention to news on CREATE, but the full realization of this program will have an enormous impact on the frequency and punctuality of passenger rail travel in the Midwest and the future of American HSR.

CREATE's $3 billion grand total has thus far acquired funding from:
  • Class I railroads ($232 million collectively committed, half has been received)
  • State of Illinois ($10 million received and an additional $400 million committed from the capital construction program, which is now in doubt with the state's budget woes)
  • Federal Stimulus funds ($100 million TIGER Grant and $133 million for Englewood Flyover)
  • 2005 Congressional earmark ($100 million)

Below, Senator Durbin speaks at the site of the new Englewood flyover and the impact it will have on HSR, while CREATE project manager, Jeffrey Sriver, highlights some of the funding challenges-

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