What Has Happened So Far

In late 2014, Houston neighborhoods learned that Texas Central Railway (TCR) is 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.

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 station 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.

However, a number of voices have 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.

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.  (See Latest Information page for link to Texas Tribune article.) 


Sign up for our newsletter