SCC RTC: Building the Foundation for a Passenger Rail Renaissance

California is at the forefront of efforts in North America to invent a new railroad model that can meet 21st century mobility needs. What can California’s initiative learn from global experience with railroad redevelopment? How might passenger rail in Santa Cruz County tie in?

Fifty years after Japan led the world into a new approach to reinventing rail transportation by launching its Shinkansen bullet train between Tokyo and Osaka, many countries across Asia and Europe have created innovations that have enabled their railroads to enhance the movement of people and freight. Global experience reveals three strategic models of High Speed Rail development: 1) Exclusive Corridors, 2) Hybrid Networks, and 3) Comprehensive National Networks.

This lecture examines how half a century of experience with railroad reinvention can offer valuable lessons for California’s efforts to expand its railroad network.

Anthony Perl is Professor of the Urban Studies and Political Science at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia. He has produced five books, most recently Transport Revolutions: Moving People and Freight Without Oil (2010). Anthony’s research crosses disciplinary and national boundaries to explore the policy decisions that affect transportation, cities and the environment.