High-Speed rail receives $200 million grant from infrastructure package

The grant funding from the federal government will be put to use along the rail line in the Shafter area.

The federal government is sending hundreds of millions of dollars to assist the construction of California’s high-speed rail project. 

Federal officials announced that the California High-Speed Rail Authority received nearly $202 million in grant funding that will be utilized in Shafter. 


The big picture: The $202 million grant is through the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements Program, which was part of the 2021 infrastructure law. 

  • Specifically, the grant will help complete the design, purchase right-of-way and construct six grade separations in Shafter to separate car and pedestrian traffic from freight trains and future high-speed rail trains. 
  • Those grade separations will be at Poplar Ave., Fresno Ave., Shafter Ave., Central Ave., Lerdo Highway and Riverside St. 

What they’re saying: Rep. Jim Costa (D–Fresno) celebrated the grant, saying President Joe Biden’s infrastructure package is advancing the nation’s first high-speed rail project. 

  • “This federal grant reflects a commitment from the Biden-Harris Administration to bringing modern transportation into the 21st century starting here in California’s San Joaquin Valley,” Costa said. “I’m proud to have worked with our federal and state partners to secure this grant to advance this project.”
  • California Senator Alex Padilla called on the federal government to continue to build out and modernize the nation’s rail networks. 
  • “This is also an important federal investment in California High Speed Rail – the United States deserves world-class high-speed rail, but it will require federal, state, and local governments working together to make it happen,” Padilla said. “I’m proud to see the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law continue to deliver major wins for California, connecting our communities and uplifting our economy.”
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