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USDOT Approves $2.5B in Private Activity Bonds Allocation for Brightline West Project

LAS VEGAS, NV — The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announces the approval of $2.5 billion in private activity bonds authority allocated for the Brightline West High-Speed Intercity Passenger Rail project connecting Las Vegas, Nevada, and Southern California. The 218-mile, high-speed rail line will primarily run along the I-15 median with trains capable of reaching 186 mph or more, cutting the trip to two hours — half the time to travel by car. Brightline West’s $12 billion high-speed rail project will be a fully electric, zero-emission system to become one of the greenest forms of transportation in the U.S. The project will bolster tourism, create 35,000 good-paying jobs, ease traffic on I-15, and cut more than 400,000 tons of carbon pollution each year.

“Today, the Biden-Harris administration takes the next step to fulfill the promise of high-speed rail in the American West, with $2.5 billion in private activity bond authority to lay tracks, create jobs, and connect American cities,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said. “President [Joe] Biden’s historic infrastructure package gives us the opportunity to build safe, green, and accessible rail systems that will deliver benefits to the American people for generations to come.”

“Building a high-speed rail corridor from Las Vegas to Southern California will drive economic investment and opportunity across the region,” U.S. Transportation Deputy Secretary Polly Trottenberg said. “Residents and visitors alike will benefit from access to a fast and sustainable travel option that better connects key cities.”

USDOT previously approved a private activity bond allocation of $1 billion for Brightline West in 2020, bringing the total allocation for this project to $3.5 billion. In December 2023, USDOT also awarded a $3 billion grant from Biden’s infrastructure law to the Nevada Department of Transportation for this project. In June 2023, USDOT awarded a $25 million grant to San Bernardino County Transportation Authority through the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity Program that will be used for the construction of the Brightline West stations in Hesperia and Victor Valley, California.

“As the first true high-speed rail system in America, Brightline West will serve as the blueprint for connecting cities with fast, eco-friendly passenger rail throughout the country,” Brightline Founder and Chairman Wes Edens said. “Connecting Las Vegas and Southern California will provide widespread public benefits to both states, creating thousands of jobs and jumpstarting a new level of economic competitiveness for the region."

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