State, city to weigh in on bullet train station

The California High-Speed Rail Authority announced Thursday it

As the City of Gilroy kicks off a project to weigh the pros and
cons of locations for a high-speed rail station, state rail
officials are already making suggestions.
As the City of Gilroy kicks off a project to weigh the pros and cons of locations for a high-speed rail station, state rail officials are already making suggestions.

A Downtown Gilroy station should be built at-grade with trenched, partially covered tracks, while an east-of-town station would need to be constructed in an aerial fashion with tracks averaging 35 to 40 feet above the ground, according to a California High-Speed Rail Authority staff recommendation expected to be announced at Thursday’s board of directors meeting in Sacramento.

“It’s consistent with what I expected,” said Gilroy City Councilman Perry Woodward. “It needs to avoid the farmland, it needs to come through downtown, but it needs to come through downtown in a way that preserves our downtown and respects our downtown.”

The City of Gilroy begins its station visioning project this week with a Spanish language meeting regarding project overview and key issues at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Gilroy Senior Center, located at 7371 Hanna Street. Another meeting, with English and Spanish language options, will be held 6:30 p.m. Monday also at the senior center.

Woodward said CHSRA CEO Roelof van Ark met with Gilroy and Morgan Hill officials April 26 to hash out what would be discussed during Thursday’s meeting.

The CHSRA won’t select its preferred station location until the summer of 2012, roughly six months after the San Jose to Merced draft environmental impact report is released, said CHSRA Regional Manager Gary Kennerley.

Meetings

– City of Gilroy Visioning Project (Spanish only): 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 4 at the Gilroy Senior Center

– California High-Speed Rail board of directors meeting: 9 a.m. Thursday at the Sacramento City Council Chambers

– City of Gilroy Visioning Project (English and Spanish): 6:30 p.m. Monday, May 9 at the Gilroy Senior Center

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