Houston High-Speed Rail Watch
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What Has Happened So Far

2014:

In late 2014, Houston neighborhoods learned that TCR was planning a high-speed rail line connecting Dallas and Houston, and that the routes under consideration to reach a possible downtown station would cut through Houston neighborhoods.

The affected neighborhoods overwhelmingly opposed this plan.  Citizens sent comments to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), which is administering the project review and approval process, and also contacted their elected city, state and federal representatives.  Houston HSR Watch proposed alternative routings to downtown utilizing freeway corridors (such as I-10) or industrial rights of way.  Elected representatives issued statements supporting the neighborhoods’ concerns and urging that alternative routings be investigated.

2015:

In November 2015, the FRA released its Alignment Alternatives Analysis report, rejecting both of the routes under consideration for reaching downtown for environmental reasons.  TCR announced that the Houston terminus would be in the 290/610 area and that the line would not extend to downtown.  All this seemed to indicate that Houston neighborhoods were no longer under threat.

2016:

However, a number of voices continued to agitate for a downtown station.  In May 2016, the City of Houston announced plans to conduct a feasibility study for bringing the HSR line to a station in the downtown area.

2017:

During the Texas Legislature’s 2017 session, more than 20 bills relating to high-speed rail were introduced.  These bills generally aimed to stall or curtail Texas Central’s ability to build the Dallas-Houston High-Speed Rail project. 

The FRA released the Draft Environmental Impact Study for the Dallas to Houston High Speed Rail Project on December 15.  Public comments were accepted until February 22, 2018.

2018:

The FRA held 10 public hearings in affected counties in Texas.  After much advocacy from Houston HSR Watch and other transportation and community groups, a Houston public meeting was granted on March 5, 2018.  The public comment period was extended to March 9, 2018. 

 



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