Quinn says even faster trains possible in Illinois
DWIGHT, Ill. (AP) -- Gov. Pat Quinn says the state's high speed rail projects could get even faster.
Quinn was there Friday when an Amtrak train reached speeds of 111 mph for the first time along a Chicago to St. Louis route. The train hit the mark on a stretch between Dwight and Pontiac before braking back to normal speeds of 79 mph. By the end of November paying passengers will get to experience the higher speeds on that initial section between Dwight and Pontiac.
Quinn says Illinois is interested in the possibility of building a separate track so trains wouldn't have to share the line with freights. That would allow for passenger trains to go faster. Quinn says achieving that along a Chicago to Detroit line is possible in "short period of time."
JOLIET, Ill. (AP) -- An Amtrak passenger train has reached a speed of 110 mph for the first time in Illinois.
The train reached the speed this morning in a modest milestone for President Barack Obama's high-speed rail vision. The five-car, two-locomotive train zipped through the central Illinois countryside, hitting its high speed between the towns of Dwight and Pontiac.
Gov. Pat Quinn and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood were among the officials aboard who watched the speed increase on a special video monitor. The governor pumped his fist in the air and gave a thumbs-up when it reached 110 mph. Other officials cheered and clapped.
The 30-mph increase from the route's current top speed is a morale booster for advocates of high-speed rail. But some rail experts question whether the route will become profitable.