California’s High Speed Rail project conjures emotions from the past

This article was originally published on Bakersfield.com on December 28th, 2016.  All rights for this article belong to bakersfield.com

Gary Kovacic

Gary Kovacic is an eminent domain attorney with Sullivan, Woeman & Dee, LLP with offices in Pasaden and Fresno, California

California’s High Speed Rail project conjures emotions from the past

“Large transportation projects in the United States have historically met with political resistance, physical challenges, and winners and losers. One of the best examples of this is the Transcontinental Railroad, the first spikes of which were driven in 1863 during the turmoil of the Civil War. More than 2,000 miles of track were laid along rugged terrain that included mountains of solid granite for a project that was completed in six years at a cost of $50 million.

Upon completion, the project changed the face of the West with surging interstate trade made possible by freight trains, passenger travel that often led to settlement, and emerging towns and cities along the route with flourishing new businesses.

But it also came at a great cost to others, most notably Native Americans who lived in the path of the railroad and Chinese laborers who endured the hazardous and backbreaking work of laying track. The wholesale slaying of herds of buffalo was yet another casualty.”

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