Benefit Cost Analysis
Minnesota Comprehensive Statewide Freight and Passenger Rail Plan
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Background

 

The State Rail Plan indicates that the option for a high-capacity, high-speed rail transportation option is not only desirable, but affordable and even preferable as fuel prices rise and larger volumes of travelers shift to an available rail system in Minnesota and around the nation. These services have the potential to offer faster, more economical alternatives to highway and air travel in intercity corridors up to 500 miles in length that have sufficient density and demand. The State Rail Plan was the first step in establishing a Federally compliant program with an intentional, well-planned, and incremental approach to building the regional and national system, similar to the Interstate System of Highways. This benefit-cost analysis adds greater detail on the estimated financial commitments and systemwide benefits of the Phase I passenger rail corridor improvements that would link the Twin Cities with the Chicago Hub high-speed rail network, the national Amtrak system, and major regional trade centers in Greater Minnesota and the upper Midwest

 

Current Status

 

The Passenger Rail Forum and Mn/DOT do not support and cannot adopt the Draft C/B report due to the lack of FRA C/B guidance and rules. The draft report is therefore deemed un-usable at this time and as such will not be used to evaluate the merits of the Priority 1 passenger rail projects identified in the statewide rail plan or to form policy conclusions about the viability of any of these routes until FRA issues benefit /cost guidance and rules and the final report is recommended by the Passenger Rail Forum and adopted by the Mn/DOT Commissioner.

 

 

 

Staff Contact

 

Dave Christianson, Project Manager

Minnesota Department of Transportation

395 John Ireland Blvd

MS 470

St. Paul, MN 55155

651-366-3710

 

 

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