Readers React: It was a huge mistake not to start bullet train construction in L.A. and San Francisco

A full-scale mock-up of a high-speed rail locomotive sits in front of the state Capitol building in Sacramento on Feb. 26, 2015.
(Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

To the editor: It was foolish to build California’s high-speed rail system from its center outward toward the final terminals in the northern and southern parts of the state. (“‘Shocking’ cut to California’s troubled high-speed rail project solves some problems and creates others,” Feb. 12)

Think if the builders of the transcontinental railroad had driven the Golden Spike at Promontory Summit in Utah to begin that railroad. That too would have been dumb.

If California had started, at the same time, the Los Angeles northward tracks and the San Francisco southward section, then residents at both highly populated ends would have been able to use the partially completed service in order to sing its praises and create public support.

Perhaps more intelligent people will prevail when the project starts back up so all of us can get a bang (or a ride) for our buck.


Steve Saeta, Santa Rosa Valley, Calif.


To the editor: I did not vote for Gov. Gavin Newsom, and in general I disagree with him on almost everything he advocates.

However, his decision to cut back on the bullet train project provides at least a glimmer of hope that there may be at least some reasonableness coming from Sacramento after the long and costly obsession of former Gov. Jerry Brown with this project.


Neal Rein, Westlake Village


To the editor: I am saddened that Newsom is scaling back the high-speed rail project.

Yes, it is expensive, and yes, costs could have been managed better. On the other hand, its benefits would have paid tremendous dividends for residents who cannot afford Los Angeles’ expensive housing by allowing them to live in Lancaster or Bakersfield and work in the L.A. basin.

A completed system would provide a great cost-efficient alternative to air travel, especially to communities outside the San Francisco Bay Area.

I wish that Newsom had looked at cutting some of the bureaucracy that increases the costs of public works and stopped wasting money on programs for undocumented residents.

Jim Kennedy, Smyrna, Tenn.

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