This is a big day for the Department of Transportation, for the Obama Administration, and for the American people. We are bringing President Obama's vision of American high-speed rail one step closer to reality with $2.02 billion in targeted investments.
And I am thrilled.
Today we are advancing President Obama's historic high-speed rail blueprint through 22 carefully selected projects that will create jobs, boost manufacturing, and spur development while laying the foundation for our future economic competitiveness. We are providing two billion dollars to 15 states and Amtrak to help build out America's high-speed rail network, enabling people and goods to travel more quickly, safely and energy-efficiently than ever before.
When DOT announced the competition for these awards in March, we were inundated with 98 applications seeking more than $10 billion. Americans heard the President's plan to connect 80 percent of the nation to high-speed rail in the next 25 years, and they responded with a loud and clear, "Yes!"
And it's no wonder. High-speed rail offers significant economic and practical benefits for the states and regions that build these lines and the passengers who ride them.