Just over one year ago, the Riverside County Transportation Commission officially adopted plans to build a new passenger rail line serving connecting the Coachella Valley and Los Angeles. One year later, funding is starting to trickle in for the project, which will cost an estimated $1 billion to complete.

Patch reports that Congressman Ken Calvert (R-41) has announced $5 million in funding for the rail line through the federal Fiscal Year 2024 Transportation/HUD Appropriations bill. That money will go toward environmental studies , and ups the total money raised for the project to $40 million.

Los Angeles - Colton segment of the Coachella Valley rail projectRCTC

The approximately 144-mile rail line would make use of existing track between Union Station in Downtown Los Angeles and the Coachella Valley, with an end-to-end trip time of three hours and 15 minutes. Plans call for the construction of up to five new stations within Riverside County, joining an existing stop in Palm Springs. The new stations would be located at or near:

  1. the Loma Linda/Redlands area;
  2. the communities of Beaumont, Banning, and Cabazon;
  3. near Cathedral City, Thousand Palms, Agua Caliente Casino, Rancho Mirage, and Palm Desert; and
  4. the City of Indio;
  5. the City of Coachella.

Colton - Coachella segmentRCTC

The service would require the construction of a third main line track on the Union Pacific Railroad Yuma Subdivision, as well as new crossovers and sidings, a new railroad bridge at the Santa Ana River, and various other infrastructure and grade separation projects.

A precise timeline for the project remains unclear, although a website previously indicated that construction could begin within 10 years of completing the environmental study.

"UP Yuma Subdivision near Cabazon. Under the plan, the line would be expanded to three tracks to allow for additional capacity for passenger service through the corridor."Wikimedia Commons

Follow us on social media: 

Twitter / Facebook / LinkedIn / Threads / Instagram