California High Speed Railway Receives $25M for Merced Extension

The California High Speed Railway Authority has been awarded 25 million USD in federal RAISE Grant funding for the Merced Extension Design Project.

The California high-speed railway is one of eight projects selected to receive a share of over 119 million USD from the US Department of Transportation’s (DoT) Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) discretionary grant programme.

California High Speed Rail
From 2029, the California high-speed rail system will run from San Francisco to Los Angeles in under three hours at speeds of over 200 miles per hour

The 25 million USD in RAISE grant funding will provide more than half of the expected 41 million USD cost for the Madera to Merced design contract.

This project will focus on the 33.9-mile extension from Madera to downtown Merced, advancing the high-speed rail line beyond the 119-miles currently under construction.

Authority CEO Brian Kelly said:

“This grant is vital for the Authority to advance its initial electrified service between Downtown Merced and Bakersfield. It reflects the strong state-federal partnership now in place to see the nation’s first true high speed rail service commence right here in California.

“Next week, our Board will consider awarding the contract to advance the design work for this transformative project.”

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law has more than doubled the funding available under the RAISE programme to help communities modernise transport infrastructure. 25 million USD is the maximum grant award.

This funding is the second grant received by the California High Speed Rail Authority under the Biden Administration since November 2021, following the award of 24 million USD for safety, efficiency and construction projects in the City of Wasco.

The Authority is also pursuing 1.3 billion USD in federal grant funding to double-track the 119 miles currently under construction and purchase new electric train sets.

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