The $10 billion, 218-mile high-speed rail project between Las Vegas and Southern California recently took a major step towards becoming a reality, as the developer inked a pair of agreements with key stakeholders that could have worked to block the project.
According to reporting in the LABJ, Brightline West reached an agreement with 13 rail unions representing more than 160,000 workers to use union labor for the construction, operation and maintenance of the high-speed rail line.
The announcement comes shortly after Brightline West agreed to terms with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to design and construct three wildlife crossings over Interstate 15.
Two of the three planned wildlife overcrossings would be on either side of the town of Baker and the third would be near the Nevada state line.
“When launched, Brightline West will be one of the greenest forms of transportation in America and an eco-friendly upgrade to the I-15,” said Sarah Watterson, president of Brightline West.
Additionally, the $10 billion project is expected to deliver significant economic upside for the region creating nearly 35,000 construction jobs, as well as, 1,000 permanent jobs and a $10 billion financial return once the project is complete.
Brightline is expecting word from the Federal Railroad Administration later this month regarding approval of the environmental assessment for the Victorville-to-Rancho Cucamonga segment. Once approved, the Rancho Cucamonga station will connect to existing Metrolink service lines in San Bernardino and Los Angeles so residents from across the region can travel to Las Vegas using the bullet train, the Daily Bulletin reported.
The bullet train is expected to be completed in 2026 or 2027, with stops in Rancho Cucamonga, Hesperia and Victorville before reaching the Las Vegas Strip.