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WSP will provide engineering support to Texas Central, developers of the Texas high-speed train, as the project moves ahead in its pre-construction phase, with a focus on engineering, cost estimating and scheduling.
The multibillion-dollar project is a 240-mile rail line that will connect North Texas and Houston in 90 minutes, with a midway stop in the Brazos Valley. The project will benefit an estimated 50,000 commuters who currently travel between Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth more than once a week, as well as others who make the trip on a regular basis.
“We are excited to partner with WSP, a company that has been involved in many iconic transportation projects around the world,” said Carlos Aguilar, Texas Central CEO. “This further demonstrates the attention this project has received from world-class firms with such scale and experience.”
“WSP’s expertise in major infrastructure projects and our team of seasoned professionals position us well to ramp up quickly in support of the Texas high-speed train,” said Joseph Pulicare, president of transportation & infrastructure for WSP. “This is a transformational project and we are proud to be a part of the project team.”
WSP joins Fluor Enterprises and the Lane Construction Corporation as the team that will perform pre-construction planning for the mega-project expected to provide 10,000 direct jobs each year during construction. WSP has already staffed dozens of full-time personnel on the project to assist Fluor and Lane.
Under present conditions, traffic between the two metropolitan regions is expected to double by 2035, increasing a trip that takes about 5 hours today to 6.5 hours. The high-speed rail system would provide commuters with an opportunity to avoid those delays, as well as reduce the overall traffic along those corridors.
The high-speed train would provide departures every 30 minutes during peak hours, and one hour during off-peak hours. Texas Central would deploy a high-speed rail system similar to Central Japan Railway Company’s N700-I Bullet train, which has been in operation for more than a half century. The private investor-owned project is not taking federal or state funding for its construction or operations.
WSP has experience on numerous high-speed rail projects around the world, including the California High-Speed Rail project currently under construction. The firm has also been involved with high-speed rail projects in Taiwan, China, the United Kingdom and the system that will connect Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.
WSP’s history in Texas dates to 1886, when William Barclay Parsons served as chief engineer of the Fort Worth and Rio Grande Railroad. The firm has maintained a continuous presence in Texas since the 1960s, and has contributed to delivering recent projects such as the reconstruction of Houston’s IH-10 Katy Freeway, the Dallas-Fort Worth Connector, and the Dallas Horseshoe Project.