Texas Central Railroad achieves federal approvals

Published on September 23, 2020

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The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration released documents for Texas Central Railroad LLC, marking a major achievement for the high-speed rail project and bringing it closer to construction.

A Rule of Particular Applicability provides the regulatory framework for Texas Central Railroad, establishing a comprehensive set of safety requirements that will govern the high-speed rail system’s signal and trainset control, track, rolling stock, operating rules and practices, system qualifications and maintenance. This document is based on a systems approach to safety that incorporates accident avoidance measures that are more stringent than those required for conventional U.S. rail operations.

The system Texas Central Railroad proposes to build in Texas will replicate the Japanese Tokaido Shinkansen high-speed rail system. Texas Central chose this system because of its reputation as one of the safest and most punctual train systems in the world.

The approval completes the Federal Railroad Administration environmental review process that began in 2014 and culminated with the publication of the 10,000-plus- page Final Environmental Impact Statement released on May 29. The document also formally selects the alignment that Texas Central Railroad will follow between Dallas and Houston.