While the state didn’t get all the funding it had hoped to get for passenger rail service, one supporter is confident things are going to happen in the future. Iowa had hoped to get funding for routes from Iowa City to Chicago and Chicago to Dubuque, but they were not included in this round of funding.
Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce C.E.O., Nancy Quelhorst, says she’s optimistic the Iowa City route will eventually get funded. “Although it wasn’t exactly what we wanted we are pleased this is continued progress and an expression of confidence the administration and Secretary LaHood have for our routes,” Quelhorst says.
Iowa did receive one million dollars to study a route from Omaha to Des Moines. Quelhorst says, “We of course would have hoped that our city was on the list but we’re optimistic about the feasibility study being funded for the extension to Omaha and are hopeful about the future.” Iowa is still in the running for another two and a half billion dollars that will likely be allocated later this year.
Thirteen rail corridors in thirty-one states received a part of the eight billion dollars for high-speed passenger rail service. The major routes getting funding were in California and Florida. A high-speed line from Chicago to St. Louis will also be built.