April 23, 2024 - TRA Newswire -

University of Texas students at Austin that were involved in a project studying high-speed rail between Dallas and Houston came  up with interesting findings that were unveiled at this year's Southwestern Rail Conference.

The course, spearheaded by Met Merritt, Professor of Practice at UT-Austin, sparked interest of some 300 attendees. The studio course is part of studies at the UT Austin School of Architecture's Community and Regional Planning program. 

The first question was should Dallas and Houston be connected by rail and the students looked at three variants of rail service and on different alignments between the two mega-regions.

Here's the presentation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6bO9Ly4fYh0

Two UT students along with Merritt looked at various components, heard different arguments for and against high speed rail, why this has not been a high priority for politicians, the price tag of such a massive project and associated costs and benefits. 

Travel times, governance, funding streams, shift of moving people from hgihway to rail, lowering emissions and comparing operating costs of road versus rail were all studied in this analysis.