CALIFORNIA HIGH SPEED RAIL UPDATE - MARCH 2012
The California High Speed Rail Program is the most significant infrastructure project undertaken in the United States since the interstate highway system. The California High-Speed Rail Authority continues to make key decisions on various aspects of this project from small business participation, environmental justice issues and revision of the business plan. Our goal is to keep you and other stakeholders informed of ongoing progress and developments. Your participation in this project is key to its success. We hope this update supports your continuing involvement in the development of the nation's first high-speed rail system.
Why California is Pursuing High-Speed Rail
With the state's population expected to grow to 60 million by 2050, California faces three choices regarding its transportation system: try to build more freeways and expand airports to meet the increased demands; do nothing; or develop a high-speed train system connecting our population centers, as many other countries around the world have successfully done. At a total cost about half of what it would take to provide the same capacity on new freeways and at expanded airports, high-speed rail delivers many other significant economic, social and environmental benefits.
Recent Statewide Project Activities
Construction Development Advances
The California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) has approved terms and conditions were issued with a Request for Proposal (RFP), a process that allows Design-Build teams to bid on construction of the first high-speed rail project in California. The RFP was issued within the last week.
Five design-build teams have been identified as "qualified" to submit bids on the first segment of the high-speed rail project in the Central Valley. These firms will now be allowed to submit proposals competing for contracts to build the backbone of the high-speed rail system in the Central Valley. Proposals will be scored on whether they meet strict guidelines for technical competence, deadline schedules, methods of operation and costs. The winning bid will include a CHSRA policy and goal that says 30 percent of the work will go to small businesses.
The "qualified" design-build teams are:
Small Business (SB) Contact
CALIFORNIA BACKBONE BUILDERS
CALIFORNIA HIGH-SPEED RAIL PARTNERS
CALIFORNIA HIGH-SPEED VENTURES
Verenise Di Salvi
(707) 439-7300 Ext. 7357
(818) 362-8391 Ext. 5637
(818) 362-8391 Ext. 5572
Small and Disadvantaged Businesses are Encouraged to Seek HSR Subcontract Opportunities
The California High-Speed Rail Authority is encouraging Small and Disadvantaged Businesses to seek subcontract opportunities with the five design-build teams that have been short-listed through the Authority's Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process.
These firms will now be allowed to submit proposals to the recently released Request for Proposals (RFP).
"This is the time for small and disadvantaged businesses to really mobilize and talk to the qualified teams to partner up and find contract opportunities on this multi-billion dollar project," said Tom Richards, Vice Chair of the California High-Speed Rail Authority Board. "With a goal of 30 percent for small business participation, we are very interested in seeing the benefits diverse small businesses bring to the make-up of the design/build teams that will bid on this project."
Business Plan Update
On November 10, 2011 a draft updated Business Plan for the project was released that describes a phased approach to construction that will allow the California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) to adapt to changing financial conditions as it moves forward, section by section. The new business plan introduces a "building block" implementation approach to connect the state's major Northern California and Southern California population centers with high-speed trains, and updates cost estimates, ridership figures and funding expectations to reflect current economic realities. The Authority collected public comments on the Draft Business Plan through January 17, 2012. The Business Plan project team is currently incorporating the comments as appropriate into a final updated Business Plan, which will be brought to the Authority Board for adoption before it is submitted to the Legislature. For more information, visit the webpage (http://www.cahighspeedrail.ca.gov/Business_Plan_reports.aspx). The Revised 2012 Business Plan will be released to the public in advance of the April 5, 2012 Authority Board meeting.
Partially Revised Bay Area to Central Valley Draft Program EIR
The Authority is circulating the Bay Area to Central Valley High-Speed Train (HST) Partially Revised Draft Program Environmental Impact Report (PRDPEIR) in order to address the November 2011 Town of Atherton legal challenges and court rulings regarding the 2010 Bay Area to Central Valley High-Speed Train Revised Final Program Environmental Impact Report. A public hearing was held on February 9, 2012, and comments were accepted through February 21, 2012. For more information, visit the webpage (http://www.cahighspeedrail.ca.gov/ba_cv_program_eir.aspx).
Authority Moves Forward on Agreement with Southern California Transportation Agencies
The California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) Board of Directors voted during their March 1 meeting to support the development of a Memorandum of Understanding with Southern California transportation agencies that outlines a shared commitment to progress the development of high-speed rail while providing funding for local early investment projects in Southern California that will improve rail service immediately.
Agencies that have already approved the MOU include: Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG), Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro), Riverside County Transportation Commission (RCTC), San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG), and the Southern California Regional Rail Authority (Metrolink).
Specifically, the Authority would identify $1 billion in Prop 1A or other funds that could be used for early investment projects along the high-speed rail corridors, as defined in the Authority's Business Plan. Meanwhile, regional agencies would work with the Authority to find matching funds in order to improve existing railways and deliver the HSR system sooner to Southern California. The coordinated effort defines a new interagency partnership, promoting a cohesive rail system that will enhance connectivity.
San Francisco to San Jose Section
In the Bay Area, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) has taken the lead in developing a draft Memorandum of Understanding with Bay Area transportation agencies that outlines a similar commitment to Southern California to progress the development of high-speed rail while providing early investment projects primarily in the Caltrain corridor (San Jose-San Francisco). MTC is coordinating with Caltrain, VTA, SF MTA, BART, SFCTA, and the San Mateo Country Transportation Authority. This draft MOU will be presented to the Authority Board at an upcoming meeting.
Additionally, Caltrain continues to coordinate with its local stakeholder communities on how to implement the blended approach proposed by Congresswoman Eshoo, State Senator Joe Simitian and Assemblyman Rich Gordon. Under this approach, which the Authority has embraced, high speed trains would operate with Caltrain primarily on the existing two-track system from San Jose to San Francisco. Caltrain in a joint effort with the Authority and corridor stakeholders is working on defining a blended system that would accommodate Caltrain, high speed trains and freight trains.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, TO SCHEDULE A BRIEFING OR REQUEST MATERIALS
If you or your organization would like to request a briefing or have informational materials provided, please call or email the project outreach team via the contact information provided below.
PARA OBTENER MÁS INFORMACIÓN, PROGRAMAR UNA REUNIÓN INFORMATIVA O SOLICITAR MATERIALES
Si usted o su organización desea solicitar una reunión informativa o que se le entreguen materiales informativos por favor llamen o envíen un correo electrónico al equipo de enlace del proyecto por medio de la información de contacto proporcionada a continuación.
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