High-speed rail routes near Chowchilla will be discussed

jsmith@mercedsunstar.comMarch 26, 2013 

Area residents will get a look at several options for the High-Speed Rail Authority's "Chowchilla Wye" today.

Rail officials will be on hand to discuss four possible routes for the Y-shaped junction where tracks would continue north to Merced and fork off west to San Jose.

Two of the options would send the 220-mph train around Chowchilla to the west near Road 13, while the two other alignments would wrap around the city to the east, near Road 18.

The city settled an environmental lawsuit with the authority earlier this year after rail officials agreed not to build the fast train along Highway 99 through the small town.

The meeting will be held in the Little Theater at the Chowchilla Fairgrounds at 1000 South Third St. The meeting is scheduled to go from 4 to 7 p.m.

More than 100 people showed up at Galilee Missionary Baptist Church in Fairmead for a similar meeting March 20.

These meetings kick off a new round of public hearings as the authority prepares to build north toward Merced, rail officials said. The first part of the line, Fresno to Madera, is expected to begin construction this summer.

The draft environmental impact report for the Chowchilla Wye could be released as early as this summer, with a final choice of the route coming next spring, according to rail officials.

Reporter Joshua Emerson Smith can be reached at (209) 385-2486 or jsmith@mercedsunstar.com.

Merced Sun-Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service