Union Pacific Railroad Causing Delays, Significant Cost Hikes in Bullet Train Project, Contractors Claim
The most ambitious rail project of California’s future is increasingly dependent on the cooperation of the very railroad that shaped the state’s past — and there are signs their relationship is growing strained.
Contractors building a 31-mile section of the high-speed rail project in the Central Valley have complained that the Union Pacific Railroad is causing delays and significant cost increases. The allegation could lead to a delay claim by the contractor against the state.
The friction involves Union Pacific’s “right of way,” the 100-foot-wide passage granted under President Abraham Lincoln, a former railroad attorney, in the 1860s as a way to develop the west.
It has remained core to the nation’s largest freight railroad: In a folksy television ad that has run periodically for half a century, employees sing, “We are the Union Pacific and we’ve got the right of way.”
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