Chicago-to-St. Louis high(er)-speed rail corridor

Whether one considers it a "high-speed" or "higher-speed" rail, the $1.5 billion project to speed up trains on the 284-mile Chicago-to-St. Louis corridor is making incremental progress.

The project's highpoint to date occurred in November 2012, when Amtrak Lincoln Service trains began running up to 110 mph over a 15-mile stretch between Dwight and Pontiac, Ill. Although passenger trains on other parts of the corridor continue to run at 79 mph, reaching 110 mph along those 15 miles was a milestone for the Illinois rail network, according to project officials.

The Chicago-St. Louis project is considered significant because of its scope and size, the number of stakeholders involved and the fact that it's among the first to start construction under the federal High Speed Intercity Passenger Rail program.

For more information about the project's progress, read my article in this month's issue of Progressive Railroading.

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