High-Speed Rail Productivity

MIT Project Information


NuRail Project IDNURail2012-MIT-R02
Project TitleHigh-Speed Rail Productivity
UniversityMassachusetts Institute of Technology
Project ManagerSussman
Principal InvestigatorSussman
PI Contact InformationPhone: (617) 253-4430 Email: sussman@mit.edu
Funding Source(s) and Amounts Provided (by each agency or organization)$130,000 MIT funds and other non-federal research funds; $130,000 USDOT RITA
Total Project Cost$260,000
Agency ID or Contract NumberDTRT12-G-UTC18 (Grant 1)
Start Date2012-09-01
End Date2013-08-31
Location
Brief Description of Research ProjectMassachusetts Institute of Technology's research activities will focus on intercity passenger rail. The project will consider the development of internationally scaled High-Speed Rail (Shinkansen, TGV and so forth) in the United States as well as incremental High-Speed Rail where the same track is used for conventional freight trains as well as passenger trains that run at "higher" (but not international) speeds. This research will focus on several of the Department of Transportation's (DOT's) strategic goals. Clearly there are safety implications in the sharing of right-of-way between passenger and freight. Also the project will suggest that development of rail systems as noted above will potentially lead to a modal shift from highway to rail and air to rail; this will have environmental and sustainability implications. Further, the enhanced mobility that will be provided through the development of such rail systems will likely lead to an improvement in the economic climate in the US and in economic competitiveness. This project will do a study of international High-Speed Rail productivity by looking at systems developed in various countries around the world. The study would begin with Japan, the pioneer in High-Speed Rail in 1964, continue with France and Germany and possibly consider Korea and Taiwan as well depending on available resources. The project will consider the productivity of these systems and the business case underlying them at the time of inception. It is suggested this will provide substantial input to decision making about such systems in the US. The project plans to focus on High-Speed Rail in the Northeast Corridor and also in the California Corridor using the international results obtained to help frame a business case in those instances.
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Final ReportNURail2012-MIT-R02-Final_Report_(Archila)1.pdf