外文标题：Why does high-speed rail remain elusive in the US?
Travelers easily whiz from city to city on high-speed trains in many parts of South America, Asia and Europe. Since the first high-speed lines began operating more than 50 years ago in Japan, they have become an essential part of transportation worldwide.
Yet the US has never built a single stretch of high-speed rail, which is generally defined as accommodating trains that go at least 200 mph (321 kph). And proposals to do so have been thwarted for decades.
So what’s holding America back?
For starters, a much larger land mass, longer distances between major cities and the high cost of construction.
Other factors include efficient air travel, relatively low prices for gasoline and a car-based culture.
In recent decades, political pressure against bullet trains has come from conservatives who argue that such systems should acquire private financial backing and prove that their operations will at minimum be cost-neutral.
It’s a burden state and federal governments do not place on other huge transportation projects such as freeways and airports. For now, the best the country can do is Amtrak’s Acela, which reaches speeds up to 150 mph on a busy route between Washington and Boston.
In an effort to jump-start high-speed rail, the Obama administration in 2009 awarded $7 billion for projects in California, Florida and Wisconsin. Republican governors in Florida and Wisconsin rejected the funding and backed out of high-speed rail plans, sending more of those dollars to California.
Despite the political resistance and financial hurdles, two projects have moved beyond the conceptual phase. One is California’s $68 billion plan for a high-speed rail network connecting Northern and Southern California. The other is the privately financed plan in central Texas.
‘The challenge in America is the scale of America,’ said Robert Eckels, chief executive of the Texas Central High Speed Railway, a private venture that is planning a bullet train between Dallas and Houston.
The Texas project has received much less publicity than California’s, yet it could become the nation’s first operating bullet train line.
Prabhas Ghosh (Unknown)
India is another candidate which shares the common concerns as to why high speed trains cannot be a reality in here. Large land mass, high cost of construction, and a bit hostile geographic conditions may prove high speed transport technology from fructifying. Imagine Mumbai Ahmedabad high speed train running 530 kms in 2 hours, with a minimum transit cost of close to 3000 rupees one way, and project outlay cost of close to 70k crores..insane!
kumar gaurav (Unknown)
Each country has its own risk and limits
Vasan S (chennai)
Reality is Lobbing from Car corporates to govt. If cost is reason, they would not have NASA. If they feel fuel is cheep and air itself is sufficient, they wont interfear other countries, real reason of Lobbing stops trains in US. forget about high speed trains, even many normal trains are not found in most places.
people prefer Air travel and road travel over train travel