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High Speed Rail, Space Port, Crowdfunding, and the Ring Cycle: Houston Matters for Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Former Harris County judge and Texas Central Railway President Robert Eckels is behind an effort to construct a privately funded bullet train between Houston and Dallas/Fort Worth. The mayors of those cities, late last month, expressed their unified support for the project. Texas Central Railway first proposed the plan to build the rail line back in […]

Former Harris County judge and Texas Central Railway President Robert Eckels is behind an effort to construct a privately funded bullet train between Houston and Dallas/Fort Worth. The mayors of those cities, late last month, expressed their unified support for the project.

Texas Central Railway first proposed the plan to build the rail line back in 2012. If successful, it would offer commuters a way to travel from Houston to Dallas in 90 minutes.

On this edition of Houston Matters, we talk with Eckels about the proposed project and find out what hurdles remain before it can be constructed and operational.

Also this hour: another proposed future transportation project would allow travelers to leave Houston…vertically. Houston Airport System officials say they’re going to turn Ellington Airport into a spaceport. Officials say they the spaceport could be up and running as early as 2017, which means sending passengers into space from Houston may not be too far off. HAS is collaborating with local universities, including Rice, to connect students with the aerospace industry. We discuss the project, what’s feasible between now and 2017, and what it might mean for Space City to, once again, be the launching pad for aerospace.

Plus: we talk with Houstonians who use crowd-funding to kick-start projects. And: we learn about the Houston Grand Opera‘s performance – over four years – of Wagner’s Ring Cycle.

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