A private company just raised $75-million to build high speed rail in Texas

Texas Central Partners, the group behind a planned 240-mile bullet train between Dallas and Houston, on Wednesday announced they had raised $US75 million in private funds.

Also announced was a new CEO to lead the private company. Tim Kieth, who previously led Deutsche Bank’s real estate investment arm, will take the reins of the five-year-old firm.

Funds came entirely from Texas-based investors, the company said in a
press release.

“Today’s announcement marks an important step for Dallas and for our state,” said Dallas mayor Mike Rawlings.

“Investors from our own Texas communities have determined that private high-speed rail is not only needed, but it’s worthy of their financial investment.”

Texas Central Railway hopes to carry passengers on the 90 minute journey by 2021. But there’s opposition to the project.

A not-for-profit called Texans Against High Speed Rail was set up in February by project opponents. They say eminent domain will likely be used to obtain land for the railway, “destroying pristine ranch and farm land.”

“We will continue to meet with state legislators and officials in the executive branch,” President Kyle Workman told Business Insider.

“We will be providing free eminent domain training for affected landowners so they are prepared when TCR tries to buy their land.”

$US75 million is a small dent in the project’s estimated $US10-billion price tag, but it’s an important step, CEO Tim Kieth notes in a press release.

“This project is another step in the long history of Texas leading the way nationally,” said Kieth. “I am excited to work with this group of visionary Texan investors.”

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