In his continuing series on Texas Central, Railway Age Contributing Editor David Peter Alan reports on the high-speed rail project Texans want to see built between Dallas and Houston, but has been stymied by four C's: Courts, Covid, Crafty Politicians and Challenges from landowners. Down, but not out, Alan brings us up-to-date on the state of the passenger railroad company.
March 20. 2023 - RailwayAge.com - David Peter Alan -
Since last year, I have been following the saga of the Texas Central project, a proposed high-speed rail line between Dallas and a point in the sprawl near Houston. The story had more twists and turns than a mountain railroad as I covered it last year, but the result was that the Texas Supreme Court handed Texas Central a victory, which Peter LeCody, President of the Texas Rail Advocates called “a miracle.”
James Frederick Miles, a landowner along the proposed right-of-way, claimed that Texas Central did not have the authority to enter onto his land and survey it for possible railroad use, and he took his case all the way. In the end, the Court failed to find that Texas Central was a “railroad” within the meaning of the applicable statute, but that it was “an electric interurban railway company,” and held that it had authority to use privately owned land along its planned right-of-way under eminent domain.
Photo credit: Texas Central