Critics of high-speed rail project say Texas governor was misinformed

Published: Oct. 8, 2020 at 9:05 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 8, 2020 at 10:36 PM CDT
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AUSTIN, Texas (KBTX) - Governor Greg Abbott is giving the Texas Central high-speed rail project another look after obtaining new information provided by opponents of the project. This after Abbott recently wrote a letter to Japan’s Prime Minister praising it and saying it had all the necessary permits to begin construction.

Gov. Abbott went on to say “This venture has my full support as governor of Texas, and I am hopeful that final negotiations of this project with Japan can be concluded so that construction can begin.” The proposed high-speed railway from Dallas to Houston will replicate the Japanese Tokaido Shinkansen high-speed rail system. This system has a reputation for being one of the safest and most punctual train systems in the world, according to TCRR.

The bullet train route will go from Dallas to Houston in under 90 minutes with one stop in the Brazos Valley in Grimes County on Highway 30, just west of Highway 90, in the Roans Prairie area between Huntsville and College Station.

Texans Against High-Speed Rail released a statement on social media saying, in part, “Yesterday afternoon, our first read of this letter from Governor Abbott to the new Japanese Prime Minister made us furious. On the second read, while still furious, we realized the Governor’s Office has been absolutely misled”.

Those opposed to the new high-speed railway say property rights and livelihoods of Texans are at stake.

“We believe that the Japanese government will see right through that and they will now know that Texas Central is providing inaccurate or incomplete information to all levels of government including the governor of the state of Texas,” said Kyle Workman, President of Texans Against High-Speed Rail.

The office of the governor released the following statement:

“From the beginning of this project, the Governor made clear that he could support this project if, and only if, the private property rights of Texans are fully respected and no state funding is used. The Governor’s team has learned that the information it was provided was incomplete. As a result, the Governor’s Office will re-evaluate this matter after gathering additional information from all affected parties.”

Texas Central did not respond to our requests for comment on Thursday.

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