Trains For America

More choices for better transportation

FRA will assist Maglev studies

I will be moving a few items to the front page today. Thanks for your input. The local and regional stories are appreciated.

Beginning October 20, 2008, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) will accept applications from states or state designated authorities for $45 million in grant funding for proposed magnetic levitation (maglev) projects located east of the Mississippi River. The SAFETEA-LU Technical Corrections Act of 2008 limits the eligible projects to those in or between: Pittsburgh, Baltimore-Washington, and Atlanta-Chattanooga. FRA may award one or more grants which can be used for preconstruction planning activities and the capital costs of the fixed guideway infrastructure.

Internet article is at this link.

For your convenience I have attached the PDF version of the Federal Register “Notice of Funding Availability” which is referenced in the FRA press release.  It can be found at this link.

This money was called out originally in the summer of 2005 when the SAFETEA-LU bill was enacted, but has just become available now.  Needless to say this is a boost for the current high-speed maglev projects around the USA.

Filed under: Uncategorized

5 Responses

  1. Just a reminder: The 40-mile maglev project connecting Las Vegas and Primm, Nevada, which is the first segment of the full Las Vegas – Anaheim, CA route, was singled out to receive half the available funds ($45 million) in the original SAFETEA-LU legislation. It is not included in this most recent NOFA announcement.

  2. Loren Petrich says:

    I find it hard to take seriously an Atlanta – Chattanooga maglev route. The distance between those two cities is about 103 mi as the airplane flies and 119 mi by road.

    Of the remaining cities, the Pittsburgh area has a population of 2.5m, Baltimore, 2.7m, and Washington, 5.8m (metro areas, Wikipedia’s figures).

    For Pittsburgh, I recall a proposal of a maglev line out to its airport. Such a line could follow PA-60/US-22,30 to downtown Pittsburgh, a distance of about 18 mi.

    For Baltimore, BWI airport, and Washington, the line will be about 40 miles long and will follow MD-295 or the Northeast Corridor rail line.

    I think that the Balt-Wash line would be the best choice, on account of the area’s population and existing transit infrastructure, with Pittsburgh being worth considering.

  3. I don’t understand your bias against the Atlanta – Chattanooga route, since its metro population is twice that of Pittsburgh’s and Baltimore’s and the need for a reliever airport for Hartsfield has been a popular topic for several years.

    Just because there’s no urban build-up doesn’t mean high-speed ground transportation wouldn’t be a good idea. In fact, many people consider Baltimore-Washington the weakest option of the three because of the existing transportation options along the corridor.

  4. Allan says:

    I have to agree with Larry. The ATL-CHA route is the best choice in order to avoid building another airport AND the fact that the line is the longest gives maglev the best opportunity to shine over conventional HSR.

    Let’s face it, the PIT route is about the same length as the Shanghai route … to be honest, a convention monorail or low-speed maglev would do the trick in PIT.

    The BWI-DC route is a little better but as Larry points out, there are already plenty of other options available.

  5. Philip A. Studer says:

    I and Mr Shapery of Innovative Transportation Systems Presented paper 70 at MagLev08 describing an Americam System Based on NASA developed technology which could cut half the cost of MagLev as that based on German demonstration systems. It combines passive Permanent Magnet (no power-always on) Suspension with Force multiplied, PM biased lateral Guidance,and highly efficient DC traction motor over a totally passive track.More details are available in the published paper or full details from either of the authors including the patent pending.

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October 2008


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