High speed train models like this were on display at the Cascadia Rail Summit. (Credit: Doug Trumm)
High speed train models like this (a Renfe set by Talgo) were on display at the Cascadia Rail Summit. (Credit: Doug Trumm)

Cascadia is uniquely set up as a region that would support high-speed rail. Between the linear arrangement of Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver, BC, and the just-over-100-mile distance between each one, the super region could be tied together by a fast rail line. It’s an idea being pushed by a number of actors, including the Cascadia Innovation Corridor, Microsoft, and anyone who REALLY needs to get back north for some Michelin starred roast duck.

In this episode, co-hosts Natalie and Ray discuss a recent report about planning for high speed rail from the Urban Infrastructure Lab at the University of Washington’s College of Built Environments. The report looks at a half dozen other high-speed rail projects around the world and draws lessons from their construction and operation. The biggest takeaway of all: plan to provide great high speed rail service. It’s a little different than the infrastructure plans Cascadia normally undertakes. Here’s a link to the report.

We would love to hear your plans for what to do in a neighboring city if it was only an hour train ride away. Reach out to us at podcast [at] theurbanist.org.  

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Article Author

Ray Dubicki is a stay-at-home dad and parent-on-call for taking care of general school and neighborhood tasks around Ballard. This lets him see how urbanism works (or doesn’t) during the hours most people are locked in their office. He is an attorney and urbanist by training, with soup-to-nuts planning experience from code enforcement to university development to writing zoning ordinances. He enjoys using PowerPoint, but only because it’s no longer a weekly obligation.