High Speed Victorville, California to Las Vegas Rail Line Targeted for Spring Construction Start
Posted on: January 15, 2021, 02:04h.
Last updated on: January 15, 2021, 03:03h.
Construction on a high-speed rail line connecting Victorville, Calif. to Las Vegas could begin this spring.
Brightline West said in a status update this month the company is “on target” to begin building the $8-billion rail project this spring.
The line would connect Victorville, Calif. to Las Vegas with rapid trains running along the I-15 corridor. Victorville is 85 miles east of Los Angeles and in San Bernardino County. The status update was spelled out in a Jan. 4 letter from Brightline West President Sarah Watterson to the Nevada High-Speed Rail Authority, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
The project stalled late last year when a proposed $2.4-billion bond sale to finance the early stages of the rail line did not attract investors. Watterson said the coronavirus pandemic was partly to blame.
In the status update, she said that “election uncertainty, the lack of approval of a COVID-19 vaccine, and lack of liquidity in the market did not allow us to price the bonds to provide long-term stability for the company.”
Watterson said there is support this year for a bond allocation, according to the Review-Journal.
However, Terry Reynolds, director of the Nevada Department of Business and Industry, told the newspaper the state has a limited amount of time to address the bond proposal. He said that decision probably won’t happen until this summer.
Longtime residents of Southern Nevada have heard discussions for decades regarding a high-speed rail line from Los Angeles to Las Vegas.
When construction on the latest venture was delayed last year, KSNV-TV reporter Tom Hawley said during a broadcast, “Shelving high-speed rail plans is not exactly new here. We’ve been hearing variations going back three-and-a-half decades.”
Hawley hosts a news segment called “Video Vault” on the Las Vegas NBC affiliate. In a segment last month about the Brightline West delay, Hawley showed a December 1985 news clip featuring reporter Donna Cline. As the reporter speaks, viewers see file footage of a high-speed train zipping through empty terrain.
You’re looking at a super-speed train similar to one that as early as 1992 could connect Las Vegas with cities in Southern California,” Cline says.
Hawley then tells viewers the current proposal would be ready to provide rail service from Los Angeles to Las Vegas in 2029 “under the most optimistic scenario.”
As Hawley noted, the effort to improve ground transportation between Southern California and Las Vegas has been a long-term goal for the Nevada tourism industry. Three years ago, nearly a fifth of visitors to Las Vegas was from Southern California, according to media reports.
Because of its remote desert location, Las Vegas has relied upon air travel to bring in large numbers of people. The nearest large metropolitan areas, Los Angeles and Phoenix are at least four to five hours or more away by car.
Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March, air travel to and from Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport has declined by millions of passengers.
With air travel in a pandemic-related slump, the visitor volume in Las Vegas has been slow to recover. In response, some hotel-casinos on the Las Vegas Strip have shut down part or all of their operations during the slow midweek days.
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Last Comments ( 53 )
Finally a train we need it build it already. And to all the people who are against it I will be the one waiving at you while you are stuck in traffic or traffic accident or pulled over getting ticket.
if let the san Bernardino county belong to nevada. the bullet train will be easier to complete. and the people in san Bernardino county can enjoy no state income tax, how great!!
Lol most of the commenters think this is a government funded rail project. They don't realize it is completely privately funded by Brightline. Zero tax dollars involved.
I’m a Union Carpenter I live in Victorville. I can’t wait for this project it will bring a lot of work for people who stay up here on top. Does anyone know what companies will be building this project? And when will it start?
Nice idea...just like the Hawaii monorail build it...$9 billion for 20 miles of rail...and still counting.
Hope this happens!
This project is already obsolete, a waste of time and money. Nobody is going to ride this if a two hour commute will be needed just to access the departure station. Euro styled high speed rail service will NEVER see the light of day on this side of the pond. Here’s a better solution, put the money on the Hyper-loop. It’s got the airlines worried.
The LA to Apple Valley to Las Vegas High Speed rail can reduce the pressure of house shortage and high price of housing in LA . With 200 miles per hour, and 85 miles from LA Union station in LAS , it took only 25 minutes from Apple Valley to LA which makes the commute from Apple Valley to LA possible and which will attract people to move to the High desert and bring economic momentum to the high desert area . Why not just open up the high desert for casino business , and people can gamble from the high desert all the way from the high desert to Nevada if the High Speed rail is ready