Minnesota legal battle with Wisconsin over high-speed rail is a distant possibility

Midwest Regional Rail System

The adults in the room know what Scott Walker’s childish decision was to lose millions of dollars and thousands of jobs due to being a college dropout with a paranoid vindetta against “liberal” Madison and a campaign promise that concluded that economic treason was good for votes from extremists.

Minnesota officials involved in wanting to connect Chicago to Minneapolis by way of Wisconsin have been looking at legal actions against Walker, but know it could be a tough case.
The Minneapolis Post has an interesting article on such a strategy, but this shows just how foolish Walker’s decision was:

Up until November’s election, Wisconsin was far ahead of Minnesota on the high-speed project. The state already participates in a Milwaukee-Chicago commuter service (seven 90-minute roundtrips per weekday, including a stop at the Milwaukee airport). The federal money, part of the stimulus package, would have extended the line to Madison, with construction starting next year. By the time it was finished, the route of the final segment to the Twin Cities would have been decided.

The overall national vision is for fast, frequent rail travel connecting major cities from a half-dozen regional hubs. As in Europe and in the northeastern United States, trains would compete with planes and autos for middle-distance travel. Chicago would be at the center of a Midwestern hub with spokes radiating to Detroit, Cleveland, Indianapolis-Cincinnati, St. Louis-Kansas City and Milwaukee-Twin Cities. Existing freight tracks would be upgraded to handle trains at 110 mph. That would trim 2½ hours off the current eight-hour Chicago-Twin Cities run. Departing at 7 a.m. and arriving for lunch might make trains a true option for business travel.


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