Comprehensive High-speed Rail Workshop, Sunday, January 13, at annual TRB Conference, Washington DC

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is invited to keynote. Transportation leaders will present.
November 19, 2012
San José, CA

– The Transportation Research Board’s (TRB) Intercity Passenger Rail Committee and the Mineta National Transit Research Consortium (MNTRC) will conduct a day-long workshop on the future of high-speed and intercity passenger rail at TRB’s annual meeting in Washington DC. “Economic and Social Impacts of High-Speed Rail Systems” will be held in the Omni Shoreham Hotel’s Blue Room. The session opens at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday, January 13, 2013, with a keynote, followed by six panel sessions featuring the world’s top experts. Audience participation will be encouraged. Those wishing to attend who are not otherwise registered for the TRB Annual Meeting may do so upon payment of the “one day” TRB meeting registration fee. Registration details are available at

The program will cover the current status of high-speed and intercity rail nationally and internationally; the variety of possible public and private funding sources; unique challenges and opportunities; design and operational integration; a discussion of the benefits; and the status of international programs. The goal is to focus attention on the evolving national network of high speed and inter-city passenger rail corridors which include a variety of performance objectives, such as trains that will travel more than 200 miles per hour.

US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood has been invited to deliver the opening keynote. Other confirmed speakers and moderators include Federal Railroad Administration Deputy Administrator Karen Hedlund; former Deputy Secretary of Transportation Mort Downey; TRB Intercity Passenger Rail Committee Chair David Simpson; APTA CEO Michael Melaniphy; MTI Executive Director Rod Diridon, Sr.; California High-Speed Rail Authority Board Chair Dan Richard and its CEO Jeff Morales; Capitol Corridor JPA Managing Director David Kutrosky; UIC Director General Jean-Pierre Loubineaux; Midwest HSR Association Chair Rick Harnish; and Secretary of the Washington State Department of Transportation Paula Hammond.

Also speaking will be Mineta National Transportation Security Center Director Brian Michael Jenkins; Texas Central Railway Company President Robert Eckels; Infrastructure Management Group President Sasha Page; MTI Education Director Peter Haas, PhD; APTA High-Speed and Inter-City Rail Committee Secretary Peter Gertler; AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department President Ed Wytkind; SNCF International Projects Transportation Planning Director Olivier Picq; Siemens High-Speed Rail Development Director Armin Kick; RATP America Senior Business Development Advisor Stan Feinsod; Amtrak NEC Infrastructure and Investment Development Vice-President Drew Galloway; Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority Executive Director Patricia Quinn; and Charles Quandel Associates President Charlie Quandel. Other speakers are pending.

“High-speed rail is coming to the US,” said Dan Richard. “California is breaking ground for the country’s first true high-speed rail corridor. Others are in line to follow, including Texas, the upper mid-west, the Northeast Corridor, and more.”

TRB Intercity Rail Committee Chair David Simpson added, “Throughout the United States, programs are being developed to improve existing intercity passenger rail corridors. This workshop will present valuable information for those wishing to take part in this massive new industry for America.”

Capital Corridor CEO and APTA High-Speed and Intercity Rail Committee Chair David Kutrosky noted that the time is right for improving the nation’s intercity passenger rail corridors. “In terms of rail transport, the US is far behind nearly every developed nation and many that are under-developed. It’s time we became world leaders again,” he said.

For more information on the workshop, go to


The Mineta National Transit Research Consortium (MNTRC) conducts research, education, and information and technology transfer, focusing on transportation policy, technology, and management issues, especially as they relate to transit. MNTRC was established in 2011 as part of SAFETEA-LU legislation authorized by Congress. Six of the Consortium’s nine university transportation centers were originally authorized under ISTEA in 1991, TEA-21 in 1998, and/or SAFETEA-LU in 2006. The MNTRC has been funded by Congress through the US Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA), by individual state departments of transportation, and by other public and private grants and donations. The nine Consortium universities include Bowling Green, Detroit Mercy, Grand Valley, Howard University, Penn State, Rutgers, San Jose State, University of Nevada Las Vegas, and University of Toledo.


The mission of the Transportation Research Board is to provide leadership in transportation innovation and progress through research and information exchange, conducted within a setting that is objective, interdisciplinary, and multimodal. TRB is one of six major divisions of the National Research Council, a private, nonprofit institution that is the principal operating agency of the National Academies in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The National Research Council is jointly administered by the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. TRB’s varied activities annually engage more than 7,000 engineers, scientists, and other transportation researchers and practitioners from the public and private sectors and academia, all of whom contribute their expertise in the public interest by participating on TRB committees, panels, and task forces. The program is supported by state transportation departments, federal agencies including the component administrations of the U.S. Department of Transportation, and other organizations and individuals interested in the development of transportation. TRB is headquartered in Washington DC.