Monday Open Thread
A few items that don’t on their own merit a post but are worth mentioning:
• Jim Hartnett of Redwood City, a member of the California High Speed Rail Authority board, has a good op-ed in the Mercury News today promoting the HSR project and the business plan. It doesn’t break any new ground but as something intended for a more general audience, it does a solid job of describing why the plans as they currently stand are sensible and worth supporting.
• China puts several HSR trains back into service after they were recalled in the wake of the deadly Wenzhou crash back in July. Chinese authorities also have been reducing the number of trains and their speeds on the Beijing-Shanghai run. Hopefully this will help restore public confidence in the safety of China’s HSR system, which took a big hit after the Wenzhou crash.
• Saudi Arabia signs off the on the Haramain HSR project deal, giving a Spanish consortium over $9 billion to build a high speed rail link to connect Mecca, Medina and Jeddah. If the world’s leading oil exporter is building HSR, that might be something California might want to pay attention to.