What is “Early Investment” aka “Fast Start” aka “Bookends”?

The most recent version of the High Speed Rail business plan (2012) proposes to have High Speed Rail funds pay for improvements in the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles Area earlier than previously planned. According to the previous version of the High Speed Rail business plan, High Speed Rail would not arrive in the Bay Area until 2034 or later.

The proposal was dubbed the “Bookends” proposal by the High Speed Rail Authority. Caltrain called the Bay Area portion “Early Investment”. A consortium of San Francisco agencies called their version of the proposal “Fast Start”.

Regardless of the nickname, the upcoming version of the Business Plan plan is expected to provide $1.5B of funding from High Speed Rail, federal, state and regional sources to fund the electrification of the Caltrain Corridor and positive train control, and a similar amount to fund improvements in the Los Angeles Area.