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Redwood City "disappointed" in HSRA plan for aerial viaduct

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  • 8/12 Palo Alto Post
    Published Thursday, August 12, 2010, by the Palo Alto Daily Post City frets over rail plan Eyes own study By Ryan Thomas Riddle Daily Post Staff Writer Redwood
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 12 11:05 AM
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      Published Thursday, August 12, 2010, by the Palo Alto Daily Post

      City frets over rail plan
      Eyes own study

      By Ryan Thomas Riddle
      Daily Post Staff Writer

      Redwood City plans to hire engineers and economic advisers to draw up an alternative to the elevated track that the California High-Speed Rail Authority has planned for the city.

      The authority dumped plans for a tunnel through the Peninsula and has decided that a track perched on pylons was best suited for Redwood City. This "aerial viaduct" would stretch 30 feet into the air and be 80 feet wide to accommodate two bullet trains and two commuter trains.

      "We're disappointed in the authority's perspective that other, more desirable configurations won't be considered," said Council Member Barbara Pierce, who serves on council's ad hoc committee on high-speed rail, in an official statement. "Despite that, our intention is to continue to work with the authority on constructive solutions that will be more suitable for our community."

      Forging ahead on its own

      City officials plan to engage in their own local engineering and economic analysis, which they will share with the High-Speed Rail Authority.

      The city's own analysis will examine how an aerial structure could impact the downtown area and nearby neighborhoods in the long run, comparing it with other alternatives.

      Rail station

      It will also see how this option would affect a potential high-speed rail station. High-speed rail officials have previously expressed interest in a station at Redwood City, Palo Alto or Mountain View. The High-Speed Rail Authority plans on holding two community meetings in September to discuss the potential station. On the heels of the authority's meetings, the city will hold its own community meetings to gauge residents' feelings on the aerial tracks and the station.

      Hill to host bus tour of rail corridor

      Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, will "get on the bus" with San Mateo County leaders and high-speed rail officials to bring together supporters for the project and , those worried about it.

      Hill is hosting a bus tour of the Peninsula rail corridor tomorrow, inviting business and elected officials. Representatives from the California High-Speed Rail Authority and Caltrain are expected to ride along. The tour will depart the Caltrain headquarters in San Carlos at 9:30 a.m. then head up to Belmont, San Mateo, Burlingame, Millbrae, San Bruno, South San Francisco and Brisbane.

      Officials tout $4 billion SF transit center

      House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Sen. Barbara Boxer and other federal, state and local politicians have broken ground on San Francisco's planned $4 billion public transit hub.

      The groundbreaking yesterday marked the beginning of construction on what Boxer called the "Grand Central Station of the West." Other politicians present included U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood and San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom.

      The planned 1 million-square-foot bus and train station will serve as the northern end of California's planned high-speed rail service between San Francisco and Los Angeles.

      The terminal will be located in the block bounded by Mission, Howard, Beale and Second streets where a bus terminal is located. During construction, a temporary facility on the corner of Main, Folsom, Beale, and Howard streets is being used. The new building will include bus, BART, Muni and high-speed rail terminals on the lower floors. To help fund the terminal, several skyscrapers containing apartments and condos have been proposed for the area.
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