Statewide High-Speed Trains Hurtle Through Gov. Hochul’s Mind

Statewide High-Speed Trains Hurtle Through Gov. Hochul’s Mind

By Yehudit Garmaise

While Gov. Kathy Hochul's plans for the Brooklyn-Queens Interborough Express chug along, upstate New Yorkers’ ears have also perked up at the idea.

“Upstate, everywhere, it would be wonderful if a high-speed train came into being,” former US Rep Steve Israel (D) told Gov. Hochul today at Cornell University in Ithaca.

When Israel, who was born in Brooklyn, asked Hochul whether a statewide high-speed train might be included among her considerable plans to improve the infrastructure of New York, Gov. Hochul smiled, and said, “I love high-speed rail.”

Many great cities in countries such as Belgium, France, Denmark, and China boast high-speed rails that combine high-performance trains and high-speed lines to slash travel times in half for both passengers and freight. 

Gov. Hochul said that whenever she travels to countries that offer high-speed rails, she regrets that New York does not provide the same modern, swift, and sleek mode of transportation. 

In the 1980s, Sen. Patrick Moynihan (D) proposed a high-speed railway in New York to connect Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Utica, Albany down to the city and out to Long Island, the governor recounted, “but it was deemed too expensive.”

Of course, the prices to create new high-speed trains in the past 40 years have only soared, and Gov. Hochul said that when the project is discussed, it is still viewed as too pricey to consider. 

Gov. Hochul, however, said she is asking many questions about why the creation of high-speed rail is so expensive and “digging into in the idea once again.”

High-speed trains are on my mind, the governor said. 

“I believe in high-speed rail, and I think it is going to be transformative for our entire economy,” she said.

Photo: Flickr

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