Groundbreaking for Nevada DOT-Led Brightline Project

Pete Buttigieg, secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation, headlined a recent groundbreaking event for the Brightline West High-Speed Rail Project; a 218-mile high-speed, all-electric, zero-emission rail line that will operate between Las Vegas and Rancho Cucamonga, California.

[Above photo by USDOT]

The Nevada Department of Transportation received $3 billion in funding from the USDOT’s Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Grant Program in December 2023 to help build the Brightline West high speed rail line, which the company expects will open in 2028.

That $3 billion grant to Nevada DOT brings the total federal support for the Brightline West high-speed rail line up to $6.5 billion in grants and financing.

“Through this visionary partnership, we are going to create thousands of jobs, bring critical transportation infrastructure to the West, and create an innovative, fast, and sustainable transportation solution,” noted Governor Joe Lombardo (R) at the event. “Nevada looks forward to partnering with Brightline on this historic project.”

“I want to thank Governor Lombardo for his leadership and support demonstrating in a project this complex that it has support across state lines, across jurisdictional lines, and across party lines; that is what it takes to get big things done,” USDOT’s Buttigieg noted in his remarks at the groundbreaking event.

“We’re going to be working closely with the Nevada DOT [and] Brightline West to meet their ambitious 2028 target,” he said. “This train will move people at 186 miles an hour between Southern California and Las Vegas in just over two hours – which is about half the time that it can sometimes take to drive on that road. There will be a million fewer cars stuck in traffic. So even if you don’t use it, you’ll be benefiting from the people who do.”

Buttigieg added that, because Interstate 15 is such an important freight route, the expected reduction in traffic congestion due to the Brightline West high-speed rail line should have a “material benefit” to America’s supply chains – all while reducing carbon emissions from motor vehicles to the tune of 800 million fewer pounds annually.

“Nevada DOT is pleased to partner with Brightline West on this exciting project to enhance mobility for everyone in Nevada,” noted Nevada DOT Director Tracy Larkin Thomason. “[This] new and state-of-the-art high-speed passenger rail service will align with NDOT’s goals to create green transportation choices and grow the economy of the region.”

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