By Stan Welch
On July 9, the Tier 1 Final Environmental Impact Study concerning the construction of a high speed rail corridor in the Carolinas was published by the Federal Railroad Authority.
Six potential corridors had been reduced to three options, which were studied in preparation of the FEIS. The final and recommended choice is known as the Greenfield Corridor Alternative. That corridor will begin at Douglas International Airport and end at the Atlanta airport. Along the way, the so called ‘bullet train’ will call at the GSP airport and will have a depot in both Greenville, and Anderson. Those depots will have to be constructed, creating a significant economic impact even before the first train runs.
Once into Georgia, the train will go through Athens on its way to Atlanta. The high speed rail system will be a part of an overall system that will begin in Boston and traverse the eastern seaboard as it travels south. It will provide a rapid alternative to both air and automobile travel.
The fact that the selection of a route took approximately twelve years should serve to temper any short term expectations for the appearance of depots or high speed trains.