Obama Calls for Investment in Regional Intercity Rail
We noted yesterday that Barack Obama has promised to direct more federal funds to bike-ped infrastructure if elected. Now comes word that the Illinois Senator is going public with his support for a regional rail network linking midwestern cities, an idea he had floated quietly during the Democratic primary campaign.
We can invest in rail, so that cities like Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Louis are connected by high-speed trains, and folks have alternatives to air travel.
To be sure, the speech — delivered in Flint, Michigan — was also heavy on promises to keep cars rolling off the assembly line. But the mention of rail and a proposal to fund a "National Infrastructure Reinvestment Bank" (reminiscent of Congressman Earl Blumenauer’s stump speech) suggest that a President Obama may steer federal transportation funding, which has long given transit short shrift, in a different direction.