The drive from Los Angeles to Las Vegas takes roughly four hours, but you could soon beeline it to Sin City in about half the time.
Brightline is planning to roll out a new high-speed train between the two metropolises in 2027. The new service will allow you to travel from L.A. to Vegas in just two hours, according to the Florida-based outfit. It may even prove faster than flying: The same trip via air takes one and 15 minutes, plus extra time for security, check-in, and airport transfers.
“After more than a decade of working to find a pathway, Brightline West will be the first true high-speed rail system in America and will serve as the blueprint for how we can connect major city pairs that are too short to fly and too far to drive,” Brightline CEO Mike Reininger told Robb Report via email.
The 260-mile Brightline West route will start in San Bernardino, California, then stop in Victor Valley before finishing at the Strip. The electric bullet train is expected to reach speeds of up to 218 mph without releasing any harmful emissions. In fact, the company claims the locomotive could reduce the number of cars on the road by 3 million annually and thus prevent 400,000 tons of carbon from entering the air each year.
On top of that, the new service will help to alleviate congestion on the highways. Roughly 50 million one-way trips are made annually between the two destinations, with 85 percent of them carried out by car or bus. Brightline says that at full operation it expects to execute 12 million one-way jaunts per year. The train will offer travelers free onboard WiFi, food, beverages, luggage storage, and hotel check-in services.
Brightline is seeking $3.75 billion in federal funding to bring the Nevada-California line to fruition. It’s already received support from some government officials, too. A bipartisan congressional group from Nevada and California asked the Biden administration to fast-track funding for the project on Monday, as reported by the Associated Press.
“This project is a major priority because it will make southern Nevada more accessible to millions of visitors each year,” Nevada senator Jacky Rosen told AP. Rosen added that it “will boost our economy and create more good-paying jobs.”
As per Brightline’s figures, the train could create 40,000 construction jobs and 1,000 permanent jobs. It will cost more than uS$10 billion (HK$78.36 billion) to lay tracks along the Interstate 15 corridor, though, so the project will hinge on Biden’s decision. Stay tuned.