April 25, 2016
This Press release is in rebuttal of the half page advertisement that Texas Central Railroad High Speed Railroad placed in most local newspapers last week.
Texas Central (TCR) High Speed Rail claims in their recent ad in numerous local newspapers that “Even before the trains start running, the communities along the route will begin to reap the economic benefits.” The arrogance of TCR to think that the citizenry is that ignorant to not see the truth! The real truth is the opposite. The lands where the rails are to be laid the property owners are currently losing values. And with no train station how can there be any economic benefit, except lost revenue and taxes from destroyed businesses and agricultural land.
The latest news is the Texas Central Railroad, High Speed Rail will require local dirt, gravel and sand to build a 25 foot high and 100 foot wide earthen berm. We have been informed that TCR will legally have a 4 mile wide construction path to condemn local land owners property then take the earthen berm materials , which for Ellis County requires a minimum of 17.6 Million Cubic Yards.
“Texas Transportation Code § 112.053. § 112.053. Condemnation of Property: When Railroad Company and Owner Disagree. (b) A railroad company may not, under this section, condemn property that is located more than two miles from the company’s right of way.” That is 2 miles on either side of the rail corridor.
Visualize the four mile wide construction site with large heavy equipment, trucks, and vehicles moving local fill dirt and railroad material as needed. Then add the alignment of city and county roads to achieve fewer underpasses resulting in more private land taken by eminent domain, including the high speed rail (HSR) path requires an access road (more private property taken) to be added alongside the 100 foot wide rail line. Further, include the easement rights on private land to accommodate new power lines (every so many miles from the Electric Utility Corridor to the HSR) for the electric run trains, then add construction equipment and thousands of workers.
Finally all the land that has been ravaged by construction equipment taking dirt, gravel and sand from local property, and you have an economic and environmental disaster that is almost beyond comprehension. This path of destruction would make an F- 5 tornado path look like a bike trail in comparison. That scenario could dramatically reduce the economy for each county affected by estimates of up to 25% or higher.
To clarify, the viaducts that TCR has advertised are elevated with concrete pillars (as seen in others countries) are very expensive to construct and are only required for wetlands or environment protected land not for rolling or flat farm land.This HSR is an environmental disaster that will destroy the economies, communities and rural family lifestyle that are the heart of Texas.
Add the loss of revenue from business and agricultural, including the loss of property values and lost taxes, etc. Schools, emergency services, county taxes, to name a few will suffer greatly. Every HSR in the world is subsidized except in Greater Tokyo, that means no tax revenue or any funds for Texas communities.
TCR is hiding behind the protective claim of a private company to deny open records by the public, while receiving public funds and government assistance and recently asking for state and federal government guarantee loans. They even refuse to release their ridership analysis. TCR had their legal team conceal documents that appear to tell a different story then what the public is being told, that is why the recent law suit by Texans Against HSR request to have the records opened for public access. TCR is in partnership with a foreign company who is a major stakeholder in the HSR and will have eminent domain rights over Texas property owners. Why is the environmental friendly main stream media silent, even in the face of growing strong public opposition to the HSR?
Community Development Sub Regional Planning Commission