Friday, January 13, 2012

CaHSR will follow Antelope Valley route, CEO resigns, board chair steps down

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After re-evaluating route options for the Central Valley to Los Angeles Basin segment of California's high-speed rail system, the California High-Speed Rail Authority's Board decided to continue to move forward with a proposed route through Palmdale.


The authority recently re-examined the Central Valley to Los Angeles Basin segment, including a route along I-5 in Southern California that extends over the Grapevine. The Grapevine alignment was originally studied in the 2003-2005 Statewide Programmatic Environmental Review and did not advance because preliminary information suggested it could cost more than the Antelope Valley route.


Work on the two alignments in the Antelope Valley continued while the conceptual study was underway.

In other news, Roelof van Ark, CEO, will resign, effective two months from now. In a statement, van Ark noted that the board and administration requested he continue to provide advice to project through the end of the year citing the importance in the continuity of management and leadership. Chairman Thomas J. Umberg announced that he'd be stepping down as chairman and will remain on the Board.

"With admiration, I would like to thank Mr. van Ark for his service to California and the high-speed rail project," said Umberg. "The announcement of his resignation will resonate throughout the state. His energy, passion and dedication to this critically important project are a testament to his character and his professionalism. We are extremely lucky to have his continued counsel and advice as we move to implement high-speed rail in California. I remain grateful for his professionalism and friendship."

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