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52 T R A N S P O RTAT I O N F I N A N C E Discussion rail alternatives, reflected on the interplay with deci- sions relating to Amtrak's future, and highlighted the Robert James need for net new investment for high-speed rail deploy- ment. As other speakers, Itzkhoff spoke to the need for Robert James facilitated the discussion for this session. Key a specific rail title in the bill reauthorizing the surface observations by some participants included the following: transportation program. As projects rely more on taxable and equity financ- ing, there is a greater need for them to make economic Has the Time Arrived for High-Speed sense. Passenger Rail? Container growth through ports will outstrip current capacity and create severe congestion. Charles Quandel We can no longer have business as usual, nor can we expect to simply build our way out of capacity constraints. Charles Quandel spoke about the prospects for high- speed rail. He shared with the group the current status The Alameda Corridor was discussed as a successful of Florida High Speed Rail and also addressed the megaproject, but its weak points were recognized. The Midwest Regional Rail Initiative. He described this ini- importance of port and intermodal research was noted tiative as changing the basis of intercity planning by as was a mechanism for public investment to serve as coordinating parallel activities in multiple states. seed money to draw in private investment. In answering the question of what puts Florida so far ahead, Quandel pointed to the critical role of a cham- pion for the initiative as well as the fact that there is a SESSION 3: INTERCITY PASSENGER MOVEMENTS: public referendum in support of it. DEGREE AND FORM OF PUBLIC SUBSIDY Yuval Cohen, Parsons Brinckerhoff (Moderator) Aviation Infrastructure and Airports John Bennett, Amtrak (Discussant) Donald Itzkoff, Foley & Lardner LLP Thomas Walker Charles Quandel, HNTB Thomas Walker, Department of Aviation, City of Chicago Thomas Walker, Commissioner of Aviation in Chicago, focused his remarks on the infrastructure needs for air- ports and, in particular, for O'Hare International Airport Future of Intercity Passenger Rail and Midway Airport in Chicago. He provided the audi- ence with a number of privatization examples, including Donald Itzkoff ones for airport parking and the Airport Transit Sys- tem, airport concessions, maintenance, construction In his remarks, Donald Itzkoff addressed the prospects management, and design and engineering. for high-speed and intercity rail. Itzkoff reviewed the In the course of his remarks, Walker described the current administration's principles for Amtrak reform, important role of the airports as intermodal gateways including the following: to the region, including for transit and intercity rail movements. He also stated that Chicago is recovering Creating a system driven by sound economics, somewhat faster than other airports from 9/11. Transitioning Amtrak to a pure operating company, Introducing managed competition, Establishing a long-term federalstate partnership, and Discussion Building a new publicprivate partnership to manage the East Coast corridor. John Bennett He addressed the investmentpolicy balance for John Bennett of Amtrak led the discussion for this ses- long-distance service and for high-speed rail, reflecting sion. The discussion focused on on the differences for capital and operating investment. Itzkoff then reviewed some of the pending legisla- Issues of funding equity between modes, including tion, focusing on those components that relate to inter- passenger and freight rail; city rail initiatives, high-speed rail initiatives, or both. The importance of a rail title in the Transportation In conclusion, Itzkoff noted the growing demand for Equity Act for the 21st Century authorization;