The California High-Speed Rail Authority has a route. Now all it needs are tens of billions of dollars to actually build a high-speed passenger train system between Los Angeles and San Francisco. The authority’s board on Wednesday selected a preferred routing to carry the proposed line into the San Francisco Bay area from the Central Valley. The board chose to select a more direct but less populated routing through the Pacheco Pass over the more-populated Altamont Pass. The decision, while important to dozens of transit and transportation advocates who attended Wednesday’s meeting in Sacramento, will be moot unless the authority comes up with money to build the project. As it stands now, the project is supposed to be seeded with proceeds from a $9.95 billion general obligation bond measure that is currently scheduled for the state’s November ballot, though the final tab is expected to be much higher. But lawmakers have twice postponed the high-speed rail measure, which was originally to have appeared on the ballot in 2004, and the possibility remains that they will postpone the measure again, if not kill it outright.
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