Amtrak and the California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) have announced they will work together to purchase new trains for the east and west coast high-speed rail programmes.
By forming a partnership, Amtrak and CHSRA are hoping to advance both high-speed projects, with a view to creating a U.S. standard for high-speed vehicles.
“High-speed rail is right for America and Amtrak working with California to advance both our programmes makes a lot of sense,” said Amtrak president and chief executive Joe Boardman.
Amtrak and the CHSRA have now begun the first phase of the procurement process, having issued a Request for Information (RFI).
Bidding could begin as soon as September this year, with an order then likely to be placed in 2014.
Amtrak is looking to initially procure 12 new high-speed trainsets to compliment its current Acela Express service, with a further order in the early 2020s to replace the existing 20 Acela trains.
CHSRA, on the other hand, plans to acquire 27 high-speed trains capable of operating at 220mph.
“This is about investing in 21st Century state-of-the art high-speed rail,” said California High-Speed Rail Authority CEO Jeff Morales.
“We are pleased to join with Amtrak and look forward to continued collaboration in the future. This is a natural fit since Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor and California will be the bookends for American high-speed rail.”